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4 Tips For Effective SharePoint Information Governance



The release of SharePoint 2013 has reignited the conversation around effective information governance. An infographic from Business 2 Community serves as a good reference for simplifying what governance should be like in an organization. Here are four keys to successful SharePoint governance.

  1. Define information architecture and plan for growth: Clearly defining information architecture helps you to determine what content belongs on a site and if there’s a logical place for the content. That allows you to better manage growth because you’re able to determine where to build a new area of the site if there’s content that doesn’t have a logical home. It is important to define ownership and accountability of sites. Keep track of the purpose of a site and who’s in charge of it. Fundamentally, there should be one business group or individual responsible for the growth of sites within SharePoint. This is vital to avoiding duplicative content and a mess of abandoned sites with no clear owner or purpose.
  2. Make sure you’re addressing business use cases: It’s a great idea to champion internal evangelists or power users. They should play a key role in exploring ways to use SharePoint and determining if it’s the right platform for a particular business solution. Having people champion the technology at a peer-to-peer level is also critical to building user adoption.
  3. Minimize obstacles and maintain control: We can’t stress this enough — do not create bottlenecks for accomplishing tasks in your governance plan. Determine how loose or tight you want your governance to be, and decide how much trust you’re willing to put in the hands of your business leaders and users. We always recommend having someone accountable for monitoring growth and serving as a checkpoint.
  4. Plan to adapt: Your governance plan should never truly be complete. A successful plan will be flexible enough to accommodate the continuous improvement of SharePoint as new solutions are integrated with the platform. Regular audits and cleanup of obsolete information will help to keep the system tidy, although the article notes that “realistically, there will never be a perfectly clean SharePoint system.” Consider devising an archive strategy for outdated content at the onset of releasing SharePoint 2013. This will support a strategy for reducing outdated and obsolete information from taking permanent residence in SharePoint.

Information governance is an important concept for any business dealing with data, which includes all organizations that use SharePoint. Keeping the above tips in mind will help you to craft an effective governance plan that doesn’t get in the way of productivity and innovation.

Source: Business 2 Community, December 2013


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