Digital Transformation Today

3 Tips For Preserving A Strong Information Governance Strategy

User adoption is a large component to determine the success or failure of a new technology project, but getting people on board doesn’t mean you should let fundamentals like an information governance strategy fall by the wayside.

With disruptive technologies such as cloud computing, mobile devices and social enterprise tools, companies need a strong information governance strategy for this new environment.

When implementing a new technology, people and productivity come first. Think about how you’re going to get them engaged and what business processes you need to bring to this technology. Your focus with a new tool like Yammer, for instance, might be on training users on the basics of integrating a newsfeed, what you should say on a newsfeed and how to access another newsfeed for a different project.

Once the new technology is being adopted and people are leveraging it, check in on the fundamentals behind establishing an information governance strategy in this new environment. Mobile and social tools definitely require organizations to revise their governance strategy and develop an appropriate information usage policy.

These new technologies have an impact on governance, but many companies haven’t fully addressed the changes. Unless an organization has officially released an enterprise mobile environment in recent years, people in that organization have probably been making shortcuts with Dropbox, Google Drive and other tools that are free and widely available, and which may fail to store content in suitably secure ways.

With mobile technologies, for example, users seldom feel that protecting company data is their responsibility — they tend to see it as someone else’s problem. But bring-your-own-device (BYOD) security is still very important. Organizations must be able to acknowledge that BYOD is happening, and invest in their own mobile and cloud strategy. In this context, companies should provide mobile apps that allow access to company data, while preventing the data from physically residing on the device.

Here are a few tips for introducing new technology, in terms of an information governance strategy.

  1. Find a simple way to communicate what’s OK and what’s not OK: This is the most important aspect of making your information governance strategy work in a new technological environment. You have to keep it simple, or people won’t get it. With enterprise social tools like Yammer, for example, your guidelines might boil down to, “Don’t post a client’s critical details or financial information in a Yammer site.” An appropriate policy for social tools might consist of basic guidelines over what users should and shouldn’t upload.
  2. Avoid processes that create bottlenecks: It’s a balancing act to provide governance and oversight without hindering usability and user access to that information. To avoid fine-line compliance issues, you might start by creating a plan to get content off external tools like Dropbox and Google Drive, and into your own enterprise mobile and cloud environments.
  3. Develop resources to support adoption and enforce policies: Enlist evangelists — people who help support user adoption and help apply governance. In particular, make sure that management is helping to foster, sponsor and encourage the use of your new technologies. That might be in the form of all-or-nothing decisions, where the old technology is removed, or through incentivizing use of the new tools through rewards or financial benefits.

From a security perspective, the accessibility of cloud and mobile platforms is challenging traditional ways that organizations kept their information secure. Organizations are being challenged now to increase usability while maintaining a strong level of security.

Learn more about creating the right information governance strategy for your organization by contacting Portal Solutions.

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