An Enterprise as a House, Not a Silo: Why Executives Must Start From the Top Down With an Architect and a Budget
By Allison J. Walton | January 27, 2017
3 minute read
To expand the conversation with the rising issues and complexities of Information Governance we want to bring the conversation to financial executives responsible for the company’s bottom line. We are still seeing one off purchases to solve immediate problems in silos, without consideration for an Information Governance blueprint for the enterprise.
At Adlib, we want to change the understanding of the problem of governing information for top executives. We have successfully done this as evidenced by hard numbers and thousands of use cases. While every organization’s line of business and needs are different, there are some basics that don’t change. Many of these basics relate to efficiency and cost savings from the top down across the entire enterprise, but rarely are the people responsible for the enterprise as a whole part of this crucial conversation.
Consider this real-world analogy for the esoteric and sometimes seemingly invisible problem of Information Governance today.
The company is the house.
We, the software provider for transformational document services, are not only the foundation that the house is built on, but we are the architects to assist in how the foundation is laid.
In the building, remodeling, and maintaining of the house the employees in the organization are the resident maintenance crew and there are subcontractors who perform various functions.
The Information Governance committee oversees the house along with the Board of Directors to ensure that the company/house functions at an optimal level.
Consider the Information Governance Committee (IGC) and their primary roles as they relate to our software’s capabilities:
- Compliance - Regulatory compliance and proof thereof through secure document storage
- Human Resources - Internal investigations /document management of searchable employee records
- IT - Functionality and High Performance- deduplication
- Legal - Risk Mitigation/Litigation/Analysis and Production/Chain of Custody/Metadata
- Privacy - Protection and Redaction of sensitive documents
- Records Information Management - Archiving/Findability/Searchability/Organization/Preservation
- Security - Access Control/Document Integrity and Protection
Where is finance in this representation? Finance executives along with their boards are the stewards of the house. Back to the analogy, it may be difficult for the persons responsible for paying for the acquisition of a tool or planning to include the tool in the budget, if they cannot fully understand the value the tool brings and its role in the organization.
The problem of Information Governance has become so pervasive it is time for the finance executives to step in and evaluate this problem and proposed solutions with hard numbers in a holistic fashion, not just in individual silos.
What is many times an afterthought, or considered too late in the acquisition process, is how our software will be acquired within the context of larger IT initiatives and budgets. Most institutions want their software partners vetted by internal resources before a purchase order appears on their desk, and that is not what we purport to change.
We do however propose that one enterprise content manager, records manager or HR specialist cannot see the full picture nor can they decide on the needs of other business units. Finance executives have this holistic visibility that is necessary for Information Governance success.
We aim to expand the understanding of the problem to the finance executives, earlier in the acquiring process to improve implementation and optimal efficiency. Much of our time at Adlib is spent communicating with the Information Governance Committee professionals about the value of information management and how it can be properly executed. As users of the software solutions we provide, they are crucial champions and change agents in the journey toward Information Governance for their organizations. However, they cannot do it alone and we cannot navigate the internal processes to assist without the appropriate audiences.
At Adlib, many of our successful customers have deployed the functionality of our software in one area. Take for example a records department that has executed content standardization through capture and Advanced Rendering:
In the records room of the company the light is on! However, this functionality has not been deployed in an enterprise fashion and therefore many other rooms have no foundation upon which to install electricity. In order to shed light on their data they are lighting candles to create visibility in an ad hoc fashion. All departments live in the same house, but the wiring has not been completed in all the rooms. Wax and matches add up over time and you still may not have enough light to find what you are looking for.
We want to assist in the tracking of these results in a real-time way as a partner. More than just a utility as our software ends up embedded in your enterprise, we want to architect these solutions with you. When you set out to build your house, you don’t just lay a foundation in one room, buy wiring, and then only put it in one room. The same is true for an Information Governance plan that must be built on content standardization to have a solid foundation.
This is no longer a bricks and mortar conversation; Information Governance software acquisition is an architectural and forward looking strategy in the digital era. Companies that plan to prosper must ensure the financial executives measuring risk, change and value are an integral part of the build from the ground up.