How Do You Eat the IG Elephant? One Bite at a Time!

How Do You Eat the IG Elephant? One Bite at a Time!

A Practical Approach to Information Governance Design

A lot of people who need information governance put it off because the task seems so overwhelming. But achieving a well-designed and manageable information governance solution is not as daunting as it may first appear.

The key to success is a systematic and step-by-step approach.  Here are some things to consider as you begin:

Don’t try to move the mountain in one shot.
As anyone who has carried this work out successfully will attest, an essential first step is to break the task into bite-size portions.

Using your company’s org chart, list each department that will be affected during implementation. Identify key players and invite them into your planning.

When you begin to develop an action plan and a timeline, address business units or divisions individually or in logical, workable groups. Do the contracts group and the accounts payable group have similar needs? Perhaps you should meet with the department heads together to ensure consistancy,

At the same time, keep an enterprise-wide view.
Construct your taxonomy with language that contains commonalities across the company. Functional classification will create the structure for how all data is stored. It drives find-ability, and even enhances share-ability.

Don’t be afraid to discard.
In addition to creating information structures where data will be stored, the flip side of the equation is to build retention and disposition schedules to accurately and effectively dispose of data that no longer carries true business value. In classifying you need to know what you want to keep; in disposition you also have to know what to discard.

And, if you are moving from file shares to enterprise content management system (ECM), the addition of meaningful metadata will exponentially increase the ability for users to locate data.

Show them the promised land.
Any governance implies a need for solid change management—and most people simply do not like change. To adopt the new system, users need to understand the reasons for the change. There are plenty of benefits to information governance—findability, risk reduction, even just enjoying a cleaner data storage environment.  Make sure your plan includes sharing those reasons with all users—and especially with company leaders.

Partner with the right solution.
At FileFacets, we help our clients not only plan, but also execute and maintain, an information governance solution. Interested in becoming a partner? Let us know here!