Here a cloud, there a cloud, everywhere a cloud application! What information governance!?

I came across an article, More Employees “Going Rogue” On IT that reminded me of a recent client experience. Doolittle writes in the piece, “Employees are signing up for free apps and cloud services without running it by IT!” Yes, this practice is reaching near epidemic levels. So often people have something that they want to accomplish and the natural tendency is to come up with the fastest and easiest way to get it done. They recall encountering one of the bajillion tools that they’ve used in their personal life that would work “perfectly” in this situation.

Ulgh! It is difficult to keep up with all of the easy access web applications that are coming online.

policyIQ-for-Information-GovernanceThe client that I worked with has used policyIQ for their Sarbanes Oxley compliance documentation, historically. They recently discovered that employees from all ranks of the business were storing and sharing company information on a wide range of cloud applications. Alone, that might not seem like a big deal—they’re being creative and finding ways to be productive—great! The issue is that many of those tools matter-of-factly state (as Google did this week) that users should have ‘no legitimate expectation of privacy’ when sharing content through a third party. Most of those apps were not intended for business use and certainly not for the confidential sharing of sensitive business information! Not to mention that employees were driving up costs in an uncontrolled manner by subscribing to many services and loading content indiscriminately.

This is really what drove our client to reach out to us. While their IT organization had not yet adopted the practice recommended in Doolittle’s post of creating and educating their employees on their IT Security Policy, they knew that policyIQ’s hosting service was SAS70 and SSAE16 Type II compliant. They had put it through the necessary reviews and had trusted their financial compliance to policyIQ for years. They had experience with locking down some content to small teams while allowing others read only access to a broader base of work. They knew that policyIQ really walked them through the information governance discussion upon initial configuration. They had to think about who would hold the keys to the structure, who could add content and how content would be shared.

Of course, security is the paramount in the discussion of information governance. Knowing where to find things, which is the master version and having instant access to the status of work is really critical to efficient business. Just ask anyone who has tangled with multiple SharePoint sites running different versions with overlapping content that don’t speak to each other. SharePoint was intended for business and often runs head on into the information governance wall (or the wall created from the lack thereof).

If you can relate to this common issue written about in the linked post and experienced by the policyIQ user described here, reach out to us! We can help you to draft a plan for transitioning processes and documentation to a secure and controlled environment—a plan that you can then use to broach the topic of information governance with your executives who are passing confidential data via their iPad app. Yikes!

Big Data, Business Intelligence, blah, blah, blah…get back to asking the right questions.

I recall when I first heard the term the “cloud”. I went feverishly searching for everything that I could read that would help me to better understand this new technology. I was amused and embarrassed when it occurred to me that I had come full-circle and recognized that I had already been working for years on policyIQ which was originally launched as a web-based software as a service (in the “cloud”).

Can you relate to this sense of overwhelmedness (I think the feeling deserves its own word) when it comes to all of this big data-analytics-intelligence-talk?

“Get on board before your ship has sailed!”

All this scary-talk about what you should be doing to control an uncontrollable amount of data is just silly-talk. I want to bring back a great article that tells us again WHY all of this information matters. R “Ray” Wang reminds his readers that it’s not about your understanding of big data; your understanding and awareness of your own driving questions is what is most important.

The policyIQ team continually recycles back to our goal of supporting our clients in making meaningful business decisions. We describe a range of mechanisms supported by our application that will help you to do so: automating processes, documenting policies and procedures throughout your organization, breaking down what was once a 10—or 100—page narrative into digestible chunks of decision-relevant information (like noting all systems, roles, departments, locations, accounts, services, et cetera, touched by each procedure throughout your documentation for easy recall when a relative question arises). The bottom line, still, is helping our clients to more confidently reach key decisions.

View_policyIQ_demoIn the midst of our configuration discussions with clients we often ask our partners to step back from the application and think, instead, about the problems they work to solve every day. What are you responsible for knowing and doing on an ongoing basis that makes a difference in your bottom line? Where are your decision-heavy processes and how do you manage them? Are you still hosting weekly team conference calls (or in-person meetings) to gather updates from everyone on the team? Rallying the troops certainly is valuable—but there’s no need to waste time collecting an inventory from each person on project status. Show up with usable information in-hand. Take advantage of the opportunity to bring a bunch of great thinkers together to brainstorm, problem-solve and innovate. Make decisions.

12-11_RGP-ImageAnd, yes, we do have a solution to help you make easy work of your information problem. What’s different about us is that we don’t try to scare you and overwhelm you and then tell you how we are the only ones who can save you. We are very much like you. Resources, made up of multi-disciplinary professionals with an average of 15-20 years of experience, exists to do one thing: help you to solve your business problems. We also have our own proprietary content management application that is like SharePoint on steroids. policyIQ can be implemented and put problem-solving and decision making information in your hands—wherever in the world they may be—in less time and at a lower cost than you’d invest in just one project manager that you might send out to try to define requirements for your information management or big data needs (long before you get to development and usable information).

We agree with the sentiment of Wang’s piece: don’t be intimidated by all of the hype and reach out to us if you’d like some guidance or support from one of our seasoned professionals.