Untamed Frontier of Record keeping
The world of Records Management has progressively undergone changes that have made a mockery of
its past. We all remember when the dominant information carrier was paper and the paper file cabinets where the ultimate storage for the information that an organisation relied upon for its day-to-day running.
A lot has changed in the way information is treated within the organisation. It is no longer the media but the content that matters when it comes to considering the value of the information.
organizations today see the strategic value of information and embrace a set of principles governing that asset — from creation to disposal.
Organizations depend on information to:
- Develop products and services: All products are produced on the basis of information that support formulas, methods, design, appeal (market research results). So are services that an organisation proffers. Without accuracy and up-to-dateness of the information, an organisation would be stuck on the way forward.
- Make critical strategic decisions: Important Strategic decisions have to be based on information that is timely, accurate and comprehensive enough to guarantee success whenever diving into new areas or taking critical decisions. Information availability and accessibility are key to guarantee this
- Protect property rights: Organisations invest heavily in research to enable them to stand out with their unique products ( inventions), services (innovations), etc. To benefit fully from these type of products and services, an organisation needs to have a well compiled Research and Development Data to prove to the world that they actually own the innovations and inventions and thus can claim patents to the same. Accurate, comprehensive, and complete data is key in ensuring/ guaranteeing this.
- Propel marketing: For an organisation to market its products and services, it has to use Business Intelligence- which derives a lot of data from existing records. Market research delivers data on preferences, trends, etc. Absence of such information is likely to cripple an organisation in moving its products and services round. This can spell instant death to the organisation. Besides, the organisation needs comparative data on the industry that it operates to enable it to leverage its investments on research, etc.
- Manage projects: At any one time, an organization would be having one or more projects that are ongoing. Success in any project will be anchored on the quality of the information that an organisation has. Whether it is a new project or an ongoing project, information is key. It is the sole item that has to be relied upon on daily basis regarding projections, risk management, budget (financing), progression, etc. Without proper information, evaluation and monitoring would be impossible, there would be no lessons learned from successes or failures, etc.
- Process transactions: Tracking processes is key in ensuring that trends are brought out early enough to institute any corrective measures if need be. Transactions are interactive processes that an organisation engages in with its internal and external customers. Anomalies may occur dues to failure of omission and commission. Such information is captured and processed for management purposes. Unavailability of such information may lead to an organisation ending up in the wrong place especially when the anomalies are against the grain.
- Serve customers: Transactional data described above also helps the orgnisation to monitor customer preferences and thus take the right moves in serving their customers. Information collected from customers also helps the organisation determine a number of factors regarding their customers. When an organisation does not understand its customers, it cannot go far. Customer needs can be collected overtly through open market research or covertly by deploying analytical tools that analyse customer transactions to bring out patterns based on products/ services or geolocational issues.
Information governance is the activities and technologies that organizations employ to maximize the value of their information while minimizing associated risks and costs. We believe that there is a need for like-minded people to come together and find a better way to use and manage information.
A well-governed information is critical to the success of any organization.
- Accountability — Information governance gets senior-management oversight, and record keeping has clear-cut policies to ensure appropriate openness and ease of auditing.
- Integrity — Records are authentically, honestly and reliably managed.
- Protection — Information that’s private, confidential, privileged, secret and/or essential to the business is safeguarded.
- Compliance — Record keeping consistently meets regulatory requirements and organizational standards.
- Availability — Information can be identified and retrieved easily through a clearly understood process.
- Retention — Materials are maintained for the right amount of time, which is dictated by legal mandate, fiscal and operational considerations and historical precedent.
- Disposition — A secure, thorough process for destroying (or donating, as in historical archives) unneeded records is in place. Litigation or audit concerns would suspend this process.
- Transparency — Information is handled lawfully, ethically and accurately.