Executive Summary

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A Practical Guide for Implementing an Enterprise Information Management Program is written for companies or large organizations (including the government) investigating ways to treat their information as a strategic asset and for those involved with implementing such a change. An enterprise information management (EIM) program solves the number one challenge among information technology executives: alignment to the business. This cannot be attained until there is a fundamental shift in the way these two groups (information technology and business) communicate and interact together. This guide shows companies how to optimize information assets to increase workflow/operation transparency and how to support better decision making based on standards, policies, and other supporting organizational infrastructure. This guide includes an overview of the various components of EIM and the supporting tools that may be utilized for each component; it is a reference document to build a company’s awareness and knowledge of EIM practices.

Chapter 1 begins with a definition of the five main components and subcomponents of an EIM program. It also clarifies terms used in the final two sections of this guide.

The five main components are:

Business Process/Workflow Management (BPM): The administration of business processes and workflows, including identifying the most efficient business processes and supporting workflow tools that support the vision, mission, and objectives of the company.

Information Governance: The practice of sponsoring, enforcing, and coordinating a company’s information assets through a collection of policies, processes, procedures, technology, and standards.

Information Quality: The people, processes, and technologies that are required to ensure information content and data values conform to business requirements.

Metadata Management: The design, implementation, and maintenance of behavior/activity models created for any business or information technology (IT) system. A repository (a place where information is put for safekeeping) is typically developed to collect models that conform to the governance structure. This allows information to be interrelated and more effectively distributed throughout the enterprise.

Master Data Management (MDM): A system that includes people, processes, and supporting technology that develops and maintains a company’s non-transactional data entities. The goal of MDM is to ensure the consistency and jurisdiction of a company’s information assets by providing structured processes for acquisition, quality assurance, de-duplication, information relationship management, stewardship, and distribution of the assets.

Chapter 2 provides a few alternatives for how a company could go about implementing an EIM program. Each of the above five components are broken down to communicate the business motivation, opportunity areas, and general rules of thumb to consider.

Chapter 3 answers the question, Where do we begin implementing an EIM program? First, the interactions between internal EIM program, business, IT, and governance stakeholders are analyzed and then a helpful checklist is provided for each group. Understanding what the company should control and what it should outsource is also explored. Then, evaluation and feedback techniques are revealed so that companies can continuously evaluate the effects of the program from all four aspects (EIM program, business, governance, and IT). A recurring calendar of events is provided to assist in structuring feedback and to create a routine that helps the company increase its maturity to the desired state in an efficient manner.