January has come and gone, and with it, many of the New Year’s resolutions that were made. I’m going to lose weight, spend more time with the family, volunteer for a good cause - you get the idea.
The problem with resolutions is that they don’t seem to last very long. Every year gym membership and activity spike in January, but most people have quit or stopped going 6 months in. So where do all of the good intentions disappear to?
The same can be said for companies that have acknowledged the need to invest in systems and processes to improve the way the manage business information, but as with New Year’s resolutions, many of these never fully materialize.
So which information management resolutions can you turn into to actionable goals?
I Need Results
Firstly, people want to see results, or some benefit, from their resolution - otherwise why bother? Rarely does this happen fast. Changing habits and behavior to achieve results usually happens over time and with effort. But from an information management viewpoint delivering rapid results can be done in several ways.
Resolution 1: Connect Your Information
What do I mean by this? From the days of relational databases, people have realized that any one piece of information is connected and related to other pieces of information. Spoiler alert - this is the case even more so today, with our technology-enabled world creating more digital information than ever before.
As information management professionals, we have really struggled to connect our systems to other information stores, largely because to do so has been a very difficult task. The good news here is the rise of content services platforms is making this task much more achievable. Using new technologies like open source and Cloud and configuration-first architecture, a modern content services platform can be quickly deployed and seamlessly integrated with existing systems for a 360 degree view of your content.
So if you want to simply access your customer documentation from your CRM system, or create a Google Vision driven auto-classification engine for your insurance claim management solution, the key is simply to connect your information. And the best part of a modern content services platform is that it delivers faster time to value and instantly measurable benefits.
Trust me, once you’ve done it, you’ll never want to stop.
Resolution 2: Focus on the Solution, Not the Technology
This is an age old mantra of the wise amongst the information management fraternity, but it has never been more true than it is today. Many in our profession are technologists, and technologists love nothing more than to play with technology and come up with awesome new tech things. But let’s be honest, the fact that you’ve created a solution that can connect three data sources, hook up realtime to a web service to include GIS data and deliver the results via a REST API is not really going to interest your typical head of finance.
However, turn that technology smorgasbord into a solution that can provide the finance department with a way to manage their out-of-control billing procedures and you will instantly be hailed a hero.
This has never been easier to accomplish than today. By using a modern, flexible and open content services platform, companies easily configure their own personalized solution to meet their unique information management requirements. These solutions build on the connected information talked about earlier, and connect the information to the process to the user - a powerful and focused solution.
Resolution 3: Get Smart with AI
Automation Artificial Intelligence has been around since the 1950s, and has been through several hype cycles over the years. However, the use of AI technology seems to finally be delivering on its potential as numerous AI-driven services can now be used within the information management space.
Automatic classification of documents is an area that is thriving with algorithms learning where information (such as customer name, purchase order number, etc) can be found on business forms and other documents. This is work that has traditionally been done by a human operator, and is work that is mundane, repetitive and typically error strewn. Recent research has shown that AI agents are now X% more reliable at classifying business forms than humans are, and that number increases to Y% for rich media types such as images and videos. As organizations begin to leverage these rich medias types more and more, the need and benefit from using AI-driven agents to do this classification becomes increasingly compelling.
And it is becoming increasingly straightforward to use AI. Web services from cloud giants like Google and Amazon can be connected into your information management solutions to process and enrich your content as and when you need. All of the benefits of cloud become available while doing this: scalability, transactional pricing, zero installation time, and so on.
Automating mundane tasks means your business frees up significant amounts of time and resource to do other tasks - meaning that you will have to find another excuse for why you can’t keep your new year resolutions.
So What Are You Waiting For?
Information management is at a tipping point. For years it has been hidden away within the enterprise, reduced to focusing on the storage and handling of documents. With the development of the content services mentality, the resources and capability available to professionals in this field are greater than ever before. Using the unique combination of expertise in structure, metadata, compliance, AI, automation, interface design, case management, and business-driven solution the time has come for information management to come centre stage.
And all of this simply by turning three resolutions into actionable goals. Good luck - and let me know how it goes.