The Personalized Hybrid Information Governance Program, Part I: Customizing the Plan
The term “one size fits all” can be painfully misleading, especially when considering a hybrid information governance (IG) plan for your organization. The fact of the matter is, there is no uniform solution; IG plans must take into account a wide variety of considerations that are specifically unique to your business. Unfortunately, many businesses put themselves at risk by not taking the time to design a custom-made plan. Instead of dedicating the time and resources necessary to create the appropriate strategies (or any strategy, for that matter), some prefer to take their chances with an ill-fitting hybrid IG plan and respond to potential issues—fines, lawsuits, etc.—by letting their attorneys sort through the mess. In the end, a company could end up spending more money on legal fees and fines—not to mention the potential reputational damage that can ensue—than if they had just done the appropriate legwork ahead of time.
In this two-part series we’ll take a closer look at the steps necessary to ensure your hybrid IG plan is custom-fitted to the unique nature of your business and the steps necessary to create and maintain the plan.
Customizing the Plan
Clearly, having a customized information governance plan is mission-critical. Before the plan can be implemented, it is important to consider all of the information management factors specific to your organization; these three will get you started:
- Location: Laws pertaining to data privacy can vary, which is a critical consideration for businesses that operate in more than one locale. Your plan must take all laws—from local municipalities to federal mandates—into account. For global organizations, this is especially important.
- Industry: Much like the location consideration, the industry in which your company operates may have specific regulations that impact the method by which you manage information. Understanding those regulations inside and out will assist in appropriately formatting your plan.
- Paper-to-Digital Ratio: It’s no secret that digital data is ever-increasing, but not all companies adapt at the same rate. Accurately account for the amount of physical and digital data you store, be cognizant of how that breakdown may shift in the coming years and allow for the possibility of plan adjustment to accommodate changes in data usage.
By boiling down these three critical elements, you will have the data necessary to streamline your plan and eliminate blind spots that could occur with a “bolt-on” approach.
In our next installment, we’ll explore best-practices for creating and maintaining a hybrid IG plan, once your determined differentiators specific to your organization.
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