OpenXML is the product of substantial effort by representatives from many industry and public institutions with diverse backgrounds and organizational interests. It covers the full set of features used in the existing document corpus, as well as the internationalization needs inherent in all of the major language groups worldwide. As a result of the standardization work by Ecma TC45 (1) and contributions via public comment, OpenXML has enabled a high level of interoperability and platform independence; and its documentation has become both complete (through extensive reference material) and accessible (through non-normative descriptions). It also includes enough information for assistive technology products to properly process documents. OpenXML implementations can be very small and provide focused functionality, or they can encompass the full feature set. Extensibility mechanisms built into the format guarantee room for innovation.

Standardizing the format specification and maintaining it over time ensure that multiple parties can safely rely on it, confident that further evolution will enjoy the checks and balances afforded by an open standards process. The compelling need exists for an open document-format standard that is capable of preserving the billions of documents that have been created in the pre-existing binary formats, and the billions that continue to be created each year. Technological advances in hardware, networking, and a standards-based software infrastructure make it possible. The explosive diversification in market demand –including significant existing investments in mission critical business systems –makes it essential.