Assessing Your Company’s Inventory Maturity Model – Level 4

Assessing your company’s information governance and avoiding costly liabilities and exposure is the purpose of the six-tier information governance maturity model. Jeanne Caldwell of RulesMapper outlines the characteristics of organizations at each level of the model.

Maturity Level 4 – Managed
In this maturity level we move from a defined to a managed process, which brings oversight, including audits.  This is where the more regulated and forward thinking organizations are today.  One of the significant differences with this level is that there is a comprehensive inventory of all electronic information in the organization.  This level of maturity minimizes the risks related to producing information and there are significant cost savings because inefficiencies and redundancies have been eliminated.

Responsibility:  There is central management with responsibility that is assigned and staffed.  Departments are responsible for participating in the inventory process and maintaining the inventory with management oversight.   The maintenance activity is done when there are changes as well as on a prescribed schedule.

Process:   The process for inventorying is standardized and consistent; it is also sustainable.  The process is supported by a centralized database that tracks the initial data and any changes to the data.  The process is sustainable because it supports both ad hoc changes as well as data validation done on a prescribed schedule.

Formats:  The vast majority of information in today’s organizations is electronic.  At this maturity level all electronic information in the enterprise is inventoried.  This includes databases, Internet/intranet, desktop, email, social media, etc.

Stewardship:  During the inventory, the stewards of each information asset are identified.  This includes all electronic information assets.  The stewardship differentiates between electronic information that is controlled by the IT department, e.g., ERP systems data, and electronic information that is controlled by departments, e.g., Access / Lotus databases.  The stewardship role is defined to include responsibilities applicable to information governance at the department level.

Duplication:  At this maturity level there is a deliberate effort to identify the information assets and where there is duplication.  This includes duplicates throughout the enterprise and media duplicates that could exist within a department.  It includes all electronic information.  There is a deliberate effort to analyze this data and to de-duplicate it.

Information Governance:  The identification of the organization’s assets establishes the framework for information governance.  Information governance is applied enterprise-wide; it is not based on risk.  Information governance compliance is audited on a regular schedule against the data contained in the inventory.

In my next post, I’ll detail the characteristics of Maturity Level 5 – Optimized.