Five 2016 Information Management Predictions
If it seems as though information management has grown exponentially over the past year, it has. And 2016 will continue to usher in even more growth for the industry. In particular, the need for stronger information governance (IG) strategies will continue to be at the forefront for many companies. Finding new ways of governing information in multiple formats is a continuing challenge – and one that will prompt many companies to look for partners who can guide them to better information management strategies.
In 2015, there were many discussions on how to help the C-Suite better understand why they need a legally defensible IG program in place, and those conversations have established the groundwork for getting the right solutions in place for 2016. As this conversation transitions, here are the top five information management predictions for 2016:
1. Thought leadership in the information governance space is expanding.
What was once a rarely recognized term, information governance has taken center stage. And there are more thought leaders helping define best practices and standards for implementing IG. For example, the Information Governance Initiative (IGI) has been gaining traction in providing IG education and training for every industry. Added to legacy groups like ARMA and AIIM, we can expect to see these leaders provide even more guidance on IG best practices going forward.
2. Third-party trusted advisors will become critical for IG consulting expertise.
Regulatory has touched the C-Suite with severe penalties for non-compliance, prompting executives to look externally for help. Businesses do not always have the staff in place to establish and maintain IG programs; an IG partner is a proven expert who can help companies stay up to date on regulatory changes, practices and policies.
3. Partners will need to provide industry-specific regulatory compliance best practices.
Because information exists in both physical and digital formats, businesses are looking for IG partners who can provide guidance relevant to the industry, whether in physical or digital form. Current regulations change frequently, new ones emerge, and partners are expected to keep up with legal advancements and establish ways to govern all information at once to stay compliant.
4. Technology will take a more prominent role in information management.
Businesses need complete control over every piece of data they own, regardless of format or location. Technology will become a critical component in effectively managing information. In particular, IG partners are well-equipped to provide insight on how automation can improve contract management, redundant, outdated or trivial (ROT) data removal, content abandonment and eDiscovery. Additionally, the Internet of Things will change the amount of data available and require experts to determine how best to manage it.
5. IT and records management will be critically intertwined.
For most businesses, the blending of IT and records management has created significant challenges and has often resulted in poor governance. Data is created at exponential rates, thanks to the seemingly endless amount of digital storage space. The result is a surge in content abandonment which opens up businesses to more risk through either non-compliance or data breaches. IT and records management will need to work closely together to ensure both regulatory adherence and data protection.
Information management has evolved over the past few decades, and we should expect to see it keep evolving. Exponential data growth and constant regulatory changes will require information governance programs to adapt. Thankfully, new technology can help tackle some of these pending challenges, although that comes with its own set of security-related needs. More on that in our next post on “2016 Information Security Predictions.”