If you’re unfamiliar with the terms like information governance or information management, you might assume they are one of the same. Actually, they’re two separate approaches to handling your business content.
What is information management?
From capturing, processing and indexing content to storing, archiving or deleting — information management involves how your organization controls various types of information This also includes responding to request for information and knowing what content should be archived as well as where.
Important aspects of information management include:
- Automating data capture to meet compliance regulations.
- Responding to audits with all of the relevant data when needed.
- Evaluating what information is important or unnecessary regarding business goals.
- Acquiring content — whether generated internally externally and understanding the lifecycle of the information.
- Understanding who is responsible for distributing, archiving and disposing information based on the enterprise’s information governance policies.
What is information governance?
Information governance comprises the technologies, policies, processes, and strategies used to optimize an organization’s content to meet business and user needs while minimizing risks of legal, industry, or regulatory trouble.
An enterprise’s information governance policy serves as a backbone of its information management strategy, applying structure and rules, while ensuring the objective of the organization’s information management plan is properly executed.
Implementing and maintaining information governance policies and procedures involves participation from several departments or stakeholders. Creating a cross-functional team made up of members from varied departments helps each teammate understand the significance of data from different user perspectives. Knowing how certain information can impact other teams, throughout the lifecycle of the content, is vital in developing accurate policies and protocols.
While an integrated team works together, each member has a different focus. For example:
- Legal/Litigation concentrates on what content is necessary and should be preserved as well as sets the time table for document deletion. Doing so helps them respond quickly to discovery requests while eliminating the time-consuming practice of collecting and analyzing immaterial data.
- Compliance confirms, each workday, that the organization observes regulatory requirements.
- IT not only implements and manages the processes but also the strategies necessary to manage data.
- Operations, which includes HR and Finance, ensures any retained data is valuable to the business. Purging irrelevant or obsolete information enables efficient analyzing of vital data to track trends or gain insights into the company’s health and direction.
- Records Management identifies types, locations, volumes and conditions of business records while working with record owners as well as the legal team to determine retention measures and lifecycle. In case of an audit, e-discovery or lawsuit, this department is required to not only produce a synopsis of record types, retention details and disposition policies, but proof these policies are adhered to.
While some businesses view information governance as unproductive and expensive, managing an organization’s content is vital to its health and growth. Having an information management strategy isn’t enough to protect you from the risks of lawsuits, audits and fees for noncompliance. KnowledgeLake has experts that can help you design a solid information and governance plan as well as solutions designed to enforce governance within your document management process.You can also read more about taking actions with an information governance initiative.
Learn more by watching this recorded webinar, Information Governance in SharePoint: Save Costs, Reduce Risks.