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Support Our 2017 Research Into Governance Of Long-Term Digital Information


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We are pleased once again to be working with IGI Supporter Preservica to conduct research into the critical issue of long-term digital information. In 2016, with the generous support of Preservica, we conducted benchmark research in this area, finding that virtually every organization surveyed (98%) has digital records and information it must keep (or wants to keep) for longer than ten years, but very few (16%) have a viable approach.

In 2017 we are continuing our research in this area by conducting a short survey of information professionals that delves further into this critical issue, focusing on the specific external drivers (like laws and regulations), business processes, and risk and value-focused goals that inform organizational strategy on long-term records and information.

This survey will only be open for two weeks, so please take a few moments to complete it today. The survey is open to all IG practitioners (i.e., those people charged with doing some type of IG work at and for the organization at which they work - not for an external customer or client).

The results will be made available through a report freely available in our Community Site and we will also be reporting results at the 2017 MER Conference, and at our annual Chief Information Governance Officer Summit, happening May 10-11, 2017 in Chicago, IL. Don’t forget to register today.


We Are Less Than One Month Away from the 2017 CIGO Summit

It’s time for the Third Annual Chief Information Governance Officer (CIGO) Summit. The CIGO Summit is a by-invitation-only, executive event for senior leaders in cybersecurity, information management, law, privacy, data analytics, records management, compliance, and other IG-related disciplines.

The age of big data means organizations have more information under their control than ever before. Unlocking the true potential of your data starts with having a new kind of information leader: the Chief Information Governance Officer (CIGO). How exactly is a CIGO critical to their organization’s success? We’re asking you to help us answer that question.

Our roster of 2017 speakers for the CIGO Summit, happening May 10-11 in Chicago, will lend invaluable insight across the IG board. With participating experts from many different facets of Information Governance, we will be hearing from Mark Milone (Senior Counsel, The Boeing Company), Doug Meier (Director of Trust & Compliance, Pandora)Aaron Murphy (Information Governance Manager, McCormick & Co.), and Roman Coleman (Attorney, The Options Clearing Corporation) to name a few. To see the full list of speakers, click here. Join us May 10-11, 2017 in Chicago for another fabulous, idea-rich event with some of the best and brightest minds in IG.

We look forward to seeing you!


E-Discovery and IG in 2017 and Beyond: The Recording of Our Online Discussion Now Available

We had a great online discussion this week with IGI Charter Supporter OpenText about trends in e-discovery and IG for 2017 and beyond. We also talked about the significance of their recent acquisition of Recommind and what it says about OpenText's product strategy and the market in general.

The video will be available here on our public site for a week, at which point it will move to the Resources section of our growing online community, where you can create a profile and interact with your IG peers. The slides from this online event will also be available there shortly.


IG Snapshots: What We Learned by Looking at Five Information Governance Programs

A Vision for Practical Governance of Unstructured Information

The Information Governance Initiative and its Supporters like OpenText (winner of our Supporter of the Year Award in 2015) are always looking for new ways to drive information governance (IG) forward. The IG community has told us that one of the most valuable things we can do for them is simply to share stories about how IG is getting done. This is exactly what we are trying to achieve with a new series of IG Snapshots based on our extensive benchmarking work. IG Snapshots tell a quick, real-world IG story and highlight the IT and management insights illuminated by the story. We see plenty of evidence that we are on the threshold of rapid change around IG. We see it in the stories that practitioners in our community tell us. We see it in research data showing first movers and fast followers increasing investment in IG, deepening IG maturity, and assigning senior managers to the IG portfolio.

We share a two-part vision with OpenText about how we can solve the problem of governing unstructured information.

  1. A significant percentage of all of your unstructured information is clearly the byproduct of a structured business process. As such, the governance of that information should be built into that business process in a “silent” way that requires little human intervention beyond the initial design. We think this should be a core function of ECM – bolting on and underpinning line of business applications as diverse as ERP and construction management. The beauty of this approach is that it does not require data “classification” (automated or not) in the traditional sense, because the purpose, meaning, and nature of the information is deduced from the business process that generates it. Sophisticated ECM systems are able to connect to and support IG for these line of business systems.
  2. A significant percentage of your unstructured information is not the byproduct of a structured business process and thus, cannot be governed this way. Our 25-year experiment to manage unstructured information using concepts that worked well for paper (e.g., centralized capture and control, human records clerks for classification) has failed. All unstructured information does not require the same level of governance. In fact, a clear-eyed cost/benefit analysis at most organizations would reveal that the cost of attempting to do so (and the loss of employee productivity, creativity, and collaboration that usually follows) does not justify even the theoretical, much less actual, benefit.

Instead, we recommend that organizations adopt this approach:

  1. Identify as many opportunities as possible to govern information as part of the business process.
  2. Identify use cases where automated or machine-assisted human classification makes sense as a tool for moving content into a managed state and maintaining it there.
  3. Identify information that requires a level of document-by-document, content-based classification and governance that can only be practically accomplished by humans, and invest in the best processes for doing this.
  4. Manage the rest using broad rules targeting systems, roles, business functions, work groups, geographic areas, and other factors that reveal business function and thus are instructive regarding the governance rules that must apply.

Focus on progress and pragmatism. Perfection is not the goal.

This approach enables us to take care of the big risks, deliver business value, and move on from our fundamentally unworkable reliance upon human governance and classification for unstructured information. At the IGI, we have articulated this vision in multiple ways through our research, case studies, events, and other work and will continue to do so. We are grateful to have support for these efforts from a forward-looking and pragmatic organization like OpenText.

Your story is incredibly valuable to the community, and we would love to help you tell it. As you will see in our Snapshots, we make every effort to protect the confidentiality and anonymity of the practitioners and organizations we profile, while trying to provide as many specifics as we can. Please contact us so we can help you tell your IG story.

In the meantime, enjoy the IG Snapshots! Download your copy of IG Snapshots: What We Learned by Looking at Five Organizations’ Information Governance Programs.

Skytop and IGI Events

How Does Information Governance Power the 21st Century Organization?

We have talked about our valued partner Skytop Strategies before - an organization that develops highly-engaging executive roundtable discussions around the globe on a range of topics that should be on the radar of every Chief Information Governance Officer and information leader in our community.

That's why we are excited to tell you about two great new events where we are partnering with Skytop to bring the IG message to executives and boards, and also to provide opportunities for IG professionals like you to learn and join that conversation.

Come to the May 19th Event in New York

The first event is The 21st Century Company - How It Creates Value, and for Whom which runs at Baruch College in Manhattan all day on May 19th, 2016. You can check out the full program here, but some of the highlights for IG pros are sessions on connecting risk management (a key facet of IG) to company performance; strategies for engaging diverse corporate stakeholders (a key challenge of IG); as well as discussion and insight from a stellar group of business leaders including:

  • Susanne Stormer, Vice President, Corporate Sustainability, Chief Sustainability Officer,  Novo Nordisk
  • David J. Westfall, Senior Director, Decision Support and Innovation Leader, AON Hewitt
  • Michael Madon, Chief Executive Officer, Ataata
  • Daryl Brewster, Chief Executive Officer, CECP
  • Livia Konkel, Director, Corporate Responsibility & Inclusion and Global Head, Diversity & Inclusion, Thomson Reuters
  • Karen Morris, Former Chief Innovation Officer, AIG
  • Chris Pinney, President and Chief Executive Officer. High Meadows Institute, Inc.

Discount for IGI Community Members

Even better, our partner Skytop is offering a generous 30% discount on event tickets to members of the IGI Community. To take advantage of this incentive, contact:

Colin Hines, Vice President of Delegate Engagement
Skytop Strategies

Cybersecurity and Information Governance

The second Skytop event we are excited about (and not just because we get to go to Rome) is the Skytop Global Cybersecurity Summit on  October 31st and November 1st, 2016. The importance of leadership from IG professionals on cybersecurity has never been more acute, which is why it is a major focus for the IGI. Our partnership with Skytop on this event will help us continue to fulfill our mandate to promote the adoption of IG around the world, and to provide opportunities for our community to learn and advance in their careers. It also helps us in our ongoing effort to expand the IGI footprint to Europe and beyond.

Barclay will be speaking at the Summit, which will convene 150 senior-level executives including heads of information technology, security, law, risk, governance, as well as audit and compliance, who are seeking solutions to complex cyber challenges in the market.

Stay tuned for more information on this great event.

Facets of Information Governance

Spinning the IG Wheel: An IGI Annual Report Deep Dive

Last month, the IGI published its Annual Report 2015-2016, the industry’s most comprehensive research on information governance (IG) as a concept, profession, and market. The report is based on extensive surveying of IG practitioners and providers. If you haven’t downloaded your copy of the IGI Annual Report 2015-2016, take a look inside with us to see what you could learn.

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The wheel is back!

Our most widely adopted infographic from last year’s Report was the one representing the activities the IG community includes within the concept of IG. Sometimes called “the pinwheel” and “the flower” by our community, this infographic has found its way into myriad presentations and publications and has sparked many fruitful discussions about IG.

Because the IG community found this so useful, we revisited the topic this year. We offered a list of twenty-two activities that might be considered to fall under the rubric of IG and asked which ones respondents included within the concept. Our list of activities or “facets” of IG, as we like to call them, included both risk- and value-focused activities. It included activities out of which IG first developed as a discipline and some emerging activities that are important components of our information activities.

The infographic ranks these by the percentage of respondents who said the facet is included in IG. Most agreed that nineteen of the twenty-two facets were a part of their concept of IG. Further, a strong majority of respondents (83%) agreed that this list was complete. The number of respondents selecting “all of the above” for all twenty-two facets was 23% lower than last year. We think this means that the concept of IG is coming into greater focus.

This is a foundational infographic for our community because it so clearly shows the coordinating function that IG must play within our organizations. Most organizations fail to coordinate groups of people fundamentally trying to solve the same problems, but as anyone who has tried to take on a complex, multi-departmental information project at a large organization knows, operation of these facets of IG in isolation of each other often impedes progress. No doubt, a reason why this infographic has resonated with so many is that the coordinating function of IG promises to put an end to the disconnected approach to information that is a common barrier to successful IG, a concept we explore in detail throughout the Annual Report.

Certain facets garnered more support for inclusion in the concept. The disciplines that have formed the core of IG from the beginning led the way. RIM had over 94% support for inclusion, with information security and protection, compliance, and e-discovery having more than 80% support. The current risk focus of IG, a recurrent theme throughout the Annual Report, likely reflects the immaturity of IG as a discipline that emerged predominately from risk-focused activities. That said, organizations are taking on value-side information activities. As the discipline of IG matures, we expect more organizations to execute projects focused on adding business value.

To learn more, download your free copy of the IGI Annual Report 2015-2016 at our online community. Not a member yet? Join today.