What Is Information Management Governance?

Sandhya Bhat

Since we are living in an information-rich world, there are three things that describe enterprise data management: concept, business objective and system.

Enterprise data management is basically about the successful data integration into different business applications and effective data retrieval for business processes utilization.

Every firm is a hodgepodge of different kinds of data or information that must be managed efficiently otherwise other entities might gain access to such and use them against the company. This is where the role of information management governance comes in. Information governance may mean a lot of things to any individual or firm, but the meanings are always related to proper utilization, distribution, retrieval and disposal of information.

Information management governance is also about specifying the decisions and accountabilities surrounding the manipulation of information for any given purpose. For some, information governance is also about encouraging desirable behaviors among the users of the information to properly value, create, store, use, archive and delete information.

The concept of information management governance is actually derived from the concept of information technology (IT) governance. IT governance is described as a set of processes which ensure effective utilization of IT to enable the organization of achieving its goals. The same concept applies to information governance minus the IT emphasis.

Based on the given definitions and conceptualizations above, information governance highlights accountability of the users wherein the appropriate behaviors are encouraged. Accountability is almost always associated with challenges wherein the lack of such certainly leads to problems.

What we didn’t realize is that information may eventually become futile or obsolete when its integrity is tarnished. The information will lose meaning and the business might no longer deem it necessary, relevant or important regardless of all the hard work and resources (time and money) involved in creating and storing that information.

Perhaps, this is the reason why efficient management and governance is critical – so that information will not lose its integrity and will be useful for the organization for the longest time possible.

Further, the users of the information are the people who knew how valuable the information is. Thus, their behaviors must be controlled, so that they will use the information diligently and generally, treat it as a valuable asset as it really is. So evidently, more than the information component of information governance, it is more lenient to the human component. After all, the people are the ones who created and using them.

About the author: Juma Vera MSc, CSSMBB, CSSE has developed several new and enhanced existing strategic methodologies to improve technology and human capital utilization, produce greater ROI on investments and streamline service delivery. She is an acclaimed author, speaker, a sought after thought leader and an avid world traveler.