Day One of the Canadian Institute’s Records Retention & Electronic Information Management Conference engaged lawyers, records managers, IT professionals and consultants in spirited discussions about retention periods, outsourcing (vendors and the Cloud), overcoming barriers to policy implementation, privacy breaches and related topics.
Despite the different backgrounds of the speakers and the attendees, there were a number of common themes re-iterated throughout the day:
• Use SMEs: developing a good information management program requires “Subject Matter Experts” (legal, records managers, privacy specialists, IT); if you don’t have them internally, outsource to suitable experts.
• “Big Buckets” are better: classification schemes should be based on a limited number of “big buckets” of categorized information to simplify things for the end user. Surveys suggest that schemes with under 50 record categories are preferred, but certainly stay under 100 if you are able.
• Educate, educate, educate: ensure your organization’s employees understand the importance of your information management program. Train all new employees, longstanding employees and everyone in between (yes, even the CEO), particularly in this era of Bring Your Own Device (“BYOD”).
• Stay off of the front page: consider appropriate privacy and security measures at all stages of your information management plan. Breaches are expensive and embarrassing.
• No perfection required: all speakers agreed that the required standard for information management is reasonableness, not perfection. The latter is too expensive, and frankly, unattainable.
Day Two’s panels will focus on risks and opportunities inherent in emerging technologies and social media.