Digital Signatures are essential for digital processes

In the past weeks I had interesting discussions about Digital Transformation and the need for Digital Signatures. For an organisation to have fully digital processes, Digital Signatures is one of many different capabilities required, such as imaging paper documents, case management, digital workplace, and workflow support. In organisations documents originate digitally (first 2 steps in the figure below). However when it comes to finalising a document, like a contract or a performance evaluation, it can be difficult to remain digital. Many processes require one or more persons to sign the document for it to be accepted and reach a formal status. Often this still …

Principle #7: Information can be transferred

This is the seventh blog of a series regarding Information Management principles: Information can be transferred. The aim of this principle is to ensure information flows where it needs to flow. In practice you must ensure that the contents of a document or any other form of information is understandable by the consumer. The information should be complete, readable, unambiguous and not dependent on the author/owner for the interpretation and use of the information. This does not mean the information should be simplified. You should make sure the consumer has the means to interpret without needing to get a PhD. This require you to know the …

Principle #6: Information has a lifecycle

This is the sixth blog of a series regarding Information Management principles: Information has a lifecycle. This principle is closely related to principle #5 – information has a status. This principle is aimed at ensuring information reaches a level of maturity that is useful and sensible for an organization. And when information is not useful any more, it is archived, destroyed or replaced with appropriate information. The amount of information being created is increasing rapidly resulting in growing management costs and reducing the efficiency of finding information. Keeping information for the sake of keeping it is not a good thing, …

Principle #5: Information has a status

This is the fifth blog of a series regarding Information Management principles: Information has a status. Once you have found information it can be very helpful to understand the status of the information*. For example an operator of potentially dangerous equipment should be able to find and use the latest approved work instruction or financial data to be shared with a shareholder has been checked thoroughly. This implies that a process is in place that determines the status of the information. This process may have varying levels of rigidity and thoroughness depending on the business needs and obligations. In some cases a peer review might be sufficient …

Principle #4: Information is accessible unless

This is the forth blog of a series regarding Information Management principles: Information is accessible unless. Information hoarding can be a major challenge for co-workers to find information they need to do the work. Even if you have implemented principles #2 – one version of the truth and #3 – one location well, there can still be significant hurdles because there are access controls in place that prevent accessing information. Typically resulting in a quest to find a person that has access, and get a copy by e-mail which undermines principles #2 and #3.   Sometimes these access controls are necessary for example for personal data, confidential …

Principle #3: Information has one location

This is the third blog of a series regarding Information Management principles: Information has one location. This one is closely related to Principle #2 – One version of the truth. In most organisations there are multiple locations to store and manage information such as Customer Relationship Management, Enterprise Resource Planning, your Intranet, Sharing Platforms of your partners and many more. This in one of the cause of people making many copies (principle #2) because it can be unclear where information should be stored and also where people can search for information they need for their daily work. This principle is especially to address this pain point. The one location principle should …

Principle #2: One version of the truth

This is the second blog of a series regarding Information Management principles: Information has one version of the truth. We all have encountered situations where there are multiple documents with the same name but with slightly different content or different lists with legal entities that were difficult to tell apart or we have based work on an outdated version and had to do rework. This principle implies that an organisation prevents the spread of copies of information through attention to behavioral change at co-workers and management to use references to information instead of creating copies. Managers should promote the right behavior through good examples like sending e-mail …

Principle #1: Information has an owner

This is a first blog of a series regarding Information Management principles: Information has an owner. Although all principles are important this one is really important and sometimes also very difficult to implement. The principle implies that an organisation assigns information ownership to the appropriate function within the organisation. The organisation needs to provide sufficient budget, resources and education to the owner. The organisation also needs to provide priority for this responsibility as part of job descriptions and performance reviews. Furthermore the organisation needs to ensure that transfer of ownership is managed for information that changes ownership due to the business process. The information owner should have the following accountabilities: Ensure information is …

What information management principles does a company need?

It is important to make sure information is properly managed at all stages of its lifecycle based on Information Management principles. Information is extremely important to a company and to employees to do their job. In order to guide employees I would recommend to the following Information Management principles for information within a company: Information has an owner – to ensure accountability Information has one version of the truth – to ensure information is reliable and current Information has one location – to provide easy access to information Information is accessible unless – reduces barriers Information has a status – so people can determine the value of the information Information has …

Your Information Management initiative is not getting attention. What to do about it?

You may have experienced this yourself.  Sometimes an Information Management initiative starts off right from the beginning and sometimes it doesn’t… There can be a real sense of urgency for example not being able to locate large contracts with clients or incorrect work instructions that led to serious safety issues. These are easy to explain to an organisation’s executives and co-workers, and will get the right level of management attention. But sometimes there is no urgency or an obvious ‘burning platform’ and yet there are benefits for example efficiency gains, information quality improvements, less risk of reputation damage or enabling new ways of working together. Some of the signs are: The benefits …