Inside TDV - The Data Vault Blog
Cabinet To Cloud
The long evolution of records management has been encouraged by many trends: government regulation, improved technology, and changing security concerns have all influenced it’s growth over time. Yet many would argue that the biggest shift has been the recent transition to digital information and the cloud, removing many of the problems found with physical processes.
For decades, information management and records management were one in the same. Files only existed in material form, and they needed to be secured against human error, theft, fire, water, and other forces of potential destruction. The methods by which records were managed remained relatively unchanged for decades, but technology began to change long held practices. By the 1980’s computers and word processors made the work environment a very different place than before. It was easier than even to create and reproduce documents, as floppy discs allowed users to save information electronically. The volume of information further expanded to never before seen numbers, and organizations started to look for new solutions.
Since then, the methodology has remained a mixture of techniques. Some industries have adopted digital strategies more than others, and there still exists a demand for storage of paper records and magnetic tape drives. The future looks to accelerate that transition, however, due to several large scale trends:
Expansion of Privacy Laws
There is no reason to believe that global and industry based privacy laws will become less prevalent any time soon. The fact of the matter is, we have likely only touched the tip of the data privacy iceberg, and organizations should expect even more compliance regulations moving forward. This will require companies, especially those operating on a global level, to have an even greater awareness of the laws that impact them in each of the geographies in which they operate.
Further Evolution of Information Governance
Information management was largely a human based activity until recently. The quick adaptation and utilization of data grew faster than technology could corral it, but emerging techniques will allow IT departments to more easily manage data in all it’s forms. Such advances will give organizations the assistance they need to reduce costs and maintain data in a manner that will support information governance initiatives. This role will become even more critical as the expansion of data continues. In concert with privacy laws comes the mission critical task of classifying, storing, securing, and tracking the movement of every piece of data. The costs associated with lax information governance practice (fines, legal costs, loss of business) will only continue to increase.
Increased Cloud Solutions and Security Concerns
The benefits offered in the cloud are many, but well publicized breaches have certainly given rise to pre-existing fears IT professionals and other decision makers have about migrating their most valuable data outside of their own confines. The potential for the cloud as a solution to data storage is vast, so solutions that address greater security will be in demand in coming years. As history has shown, those who create solutions that bring increased return on investment and greater convenience to the enterprise are often rewarded with business opportunity. In addition, managing information will no longer be a restrictive, on-site experience. Mobile devices have penetrated practically every corner of daily life, and the means by which organizations operate reflect such changes. When data must be located quickly (during potential business continuity disruptions, such as extreme weather) mobile solutions place decision makers in a position to collaboratively manage data with little lag time.
Greater Reliance on Information Management Solution Providers
The task of managing data will grow more complicated for organizations of all sizes and industries. Solution providers who are able to seamlessly assist in the secure management of information across physical and digital platforms will become an even greater benefit. Such partners will understand global compliance regulations, create portals that offer fast access to stored information, and institute information governance strategies based on the individual needs of each organization.
The Data Vault has over 30 years of experience guiding our valued clients on the path towards improved practices, and stand ready to assist in any way necessary. If you have any questions and would like professional advice on how to move forward, please contact us and one of our experts would be more than happy to help!