June 3, 2011 – Enterprises seldom practice and preach unified information management, leaving them susceptible to disjointed spending and problematic records incidents, according to a new survey from Iron Mountain.  

The document management provider surveyed more than 5,500 IT professionals focused on industries such as manufacturing, education, finance and health care for the report, “Managing Information: Trends in Business Process Efficiency.”

Thirty-five percent of survey respondents rated information management as implemented in its entirety across the enterprise. Others found implementation relegated to the local level (18 percent), partially put in place across the enterprise (16 percent) or not enacted as a whole to different enterprise geographies (13 percent), according to the survey.

As a result, 38 percent of enterprises marked their internal records management as “effective,” with the remainder of respondents dissatisfied or outsourcing those initiatives.

Without a far-reaching information implementation plan, growing sources of data and regulation have caught enterprises off guard, says Sue Trombley, director of the consulting division of Iron Mountain. Trombley says enterprises pleased with their data management approach are most often those with a change management component and financial backing for training and marketing.

“If you don’t invest in that, it’s going to go nowhere fast,” Trombley says.

Lawsuits and system attacks, or “trigger” events, often prompt organizations into a change in mindset on records management after the fact, and 32 percent of respondents noted some type of recent trigger with their information management. However, 58 percent stated they had no large-scale incident, which Trombley admits quells any “real urgent cause for anyone to consider doing anything different around records.”

Trombley says those in the survey who have an overarching plan in place for information management have done so by pushing the ROI to upper-level executives.  

“If you’re spending millions of dollars just pulling data off tapes for email discovery, that’s a compelling reason to start thinking about how to manage you data differently,” she says.

To review a copy of the survey and related Iron Mountain information, click here.

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