Information governance (IG) refers to the strategy for providing and distributing information at a company or an organization. It helps to balance and evaluate the risks that accompany a piece of particular information.
IG helps with legal compliance, operational transparency, and reducing expenditures associated with legal discovery. Various guidelines and policies are laid out for IG, and they help the employees to understand how to handle digitally stored information.
Information governance does not solely refer to records management. It also encompasses information security and protection, cyber security, data governance, risk management, data protection, regulatory compliance, risk mitigation, and auditing among others.
What is information governance? And why is it important?
Information governance is a thorough approach to managing corporate information by implementing processes, roles, and controls that treat information as valuable business assets.
In simple words, information governance assures that all the required information regarding a particular subject reaches those who need it by either making the availability of the information easier or by reducing storage costs.
Undoubtedly, information governance is an essential part of every business or organization. It helps the company to reduce legal risks that may come with misinformation or inappropriately presented data.
Also, with proper information governance, the organization can keep up with the changing market trends. Proper information governance helps a company to function smoothly, provides accessible data to employees, and ensures a safe workspace.
The principles of information governance
There are eight basic principles regulating information governance. They are-
Principle of accountability
The principle of accountability states that a senior executive or person of comparable authority shall oversee and tend to the management of the information governance. They must also take responsibility and accountability in case of malfunctions. The organization adopts policies to guide personnel and ensure that the program is being audited.
Principle of transparency
The organization’s business processes and documentation must be done in an open manner so as to avoid miscommunication and dishonest practices. The documents should also be available to all concerned parties whenever they need them.
Principle of integrity
The information documented should be reasonable and provide a suitable guarantee to all those who require it, and shall maintain clean and clear records.
Principle of protection
The information governance program shall be constructed to ensure reasonable levels of protection to files that are termed as classified, private, or essential to the organization.
Principle of compliance
The information documented and recorded must abide by a set of laws and other binding authorities, as well as the organization’s own policies.
Principle of availability
The organization must document and store the records in such a manner that they can be easily retrieved and accessed by concerned parties wherever and whenever they need to. The information retrieved must be accurate and up-to-date.
Principle of retention
The organization shall maintain its records and documents for an appropriate time, taking into account legal, fiscal, or historical requirements.
Principle of disposition
In case there are records that are no longer needed or are not updated, the organization is responsible to dispose of these records in an appropriate and safe manner that abides by the company’s policies and other laws.
Who needs information governance?
IG is mostly known for healthcare, legal, finance, governmental but it applies to all industries. Any business or organization can have its own IG policies and framework by taking help from concerned authorities.
Government agencies have a greater need for IG than other sectors since there are more regulatory guidelines to be established. For example, in a government agency, all digital communication including documents, media, texts, etc must be documented and retained according to the Federal Records Act.
Information Governance is the responsibility of every employee. It is the duty of all the employees to take care of accurate information provided by the company and give its access to the concerned person if the need arises. An IG program ensures that a company functions smoothly and can obtain the information easily when needed.
Screenshots for preserving online data
The world is increasingly becoming more modern and technologically advanced. So, it becomes necessary to preserve data and information digitally instead of recording them in books or registers.
Screenshots are a useful way of preserving online data, and many tools can help you to keep your information safe and intact. Some of the screenshots you can take are those of:
- Full website
- Social Channels
- Campaign sites (landing pages)
- Partner sites
Screenshots of your website will help you keep a track of how the website looks and functions so that you may modify things later. Screenshots of social channels will help the employees keep a track of how the company is performing on social media and will also help to keep up with the current trends and norms.
This will help to expand the company on social media and reach out to customers easily. Screenshots of campaign sites and partner sites will also help to keep proper track of the sites your company has partnered with and how to improve brand visibility.
Using Stillio for information governance
Stillio is a website screenshot service that manages your brand by archiving web pages at any retention schedule. This helps you to preserve your digital history, monitor website changes, analytics, and help your business to implement information governance. With Stillio, you can archive tens, hundreds, or even up to thousands of web pages easily.
All the plans have the same free trials and services, which makes it easier for you to decide and evaluate which plan you’d like to go for. Upgrade or downgrade your plan anytime, and make your information governance strategy a success using Stillio.
In conclusion, IG forms a very necessary part of any company or business, and it is of utmost importance to use the right tools and services to ensure that the information handled by a company is accurate and each information asset can be accessed by employees easily when needed.
Some tools to aid in your IG strategy are the ARMA International Information Governance Implementation Model, ARMA Generally Accepted Recordkeeping Principles, CGOC Information Governance Process Maturity Model, EDRM Information Governance Reference Model, and NHS Information Governance Toolkit. Services like Stillio also help to maintain and evaluate the IG developed by a company.