How Do You Make Sense of All the Data at Your Fingertips?
With many offices going paper-free or paper-lite, electronic data and information is the lifeblood of most modern businesses, but this revenue-enhancing asset could become a major liability if it’s not managed and protected properly.
Data volume is increasing at an unprecedented rate, even for small businesses, so storage, security and accessibility are key concerns.
With Big Data Comes Big Responsibility
Big Data is a relatively new term for data sets (both structured and unstructured) that are so large, complex or valuable they’re difficult to process using traditional methods.
This video describes in very simple terms what Big Data is and what it means for business…
So how can you stay in control of Big Data and use it to make better business decisions?
Reining in the Information Chaos
Well-managed data can be analysed and interpreted to gain insight, which creates a competitive advantage by enabling businesses to better serve their customers, while reducing costs and increasing productivity.
For some companies, all of their Intellectual Property is in their data, so if something were to happen, either through human error, hacking, hardware/software failure or natural disaster, an unrecoverable loss of information could be catastrophic.
Thankfully, most organisations understand the importance of having a strategy in place to manage data and balance the risks and challenges. That’s where Information Governance (IG) policies come in.
Top Tips for an Effective Information Governance Strategy
1. Create an infrastructure that enables fast, easy access to critical data.
2. Appoint an IG Manager to take ownership of the company’s data.
3. Perform a risk assessment and create a mitigation strategy.
4. Define data goals and ensure critical processes take precedence.
5. Gain a complete understanding of data ownership, importance and value.
6. Prioritise, protect and monitor all data to ensure quality and integrity.
7. Get board level buy-in to elevate IG from operations level.
8. Consult external data management experts for advice and guidance.
9. Deduplicate and archive for maximum storage efficiency.
10. Ensure end-to-end protection by identifying weak links in the data pipe.
11. Select a representative from each department to act as IG liaison.
12. Data volume will grow so ensure your system is scalable.
13. Use tools and processes that ensure data accuracy and cleanliness.
14. Be consistent. Set policies that can be enforced wherever data resides.
15. Invest in technology that automates core processes.
16. Be flexible and agile. Plan for future information needs and growth.
17. Employ logical, digital and physical security controls to prevent unauthorised access to sensitive data.
18. Keep up-to-date with legislative proposals, legal requirements and data lifecycle best practice.
19. Combat information chaos by incentivising staff to embrace IG compliance.
20. Investigate cloud-based information management and electronic document management services.