Who cares about information management? 

One of the questions we always get asked is, “So how do we get the business interested in information management initiatives?”

Despite our obvious interest in information, I have to admit that not everyone shares my passion. And to be fair, I can’t say that I know the ins and outs of accounting, HR activities or logistics. I just want my money managed, people hired and stuff delivered. The same goes for most people when you talk about information management – they don’t care about the detail; it’s the outcome that matters.

The fastest way to make IM interesting to the disinterested, is to talk about solving business problems. Think about the difference between the following two statements:

Version 1: We need to upgrade our eDRMS to improve records management.

Version 2: We need to ensure our license to operate is not impacted by the inability to retrieve our compliance documents.

Version 1 is clearly written by an IM professional. And while they are focused on delivering the outcome of reducing business risk, it’s not immediately clear for non-IM specialists.

On the other hand, version 2 is focused on a business problem and what needs to be done to solve it. Sure, it’s really saying the same thing, but this time in a way that non-IM staff can relate to.

The same approach can be applied to selling the services of an IM department. Go and ask people what they are frustrated with, help them to identify the underlying issue … and then tell them about potential solutions that IM can offer.

Demonstrating the value of IM initiatives can be challenging. Making sure that you communicate in business language, targeted at your business, will go a long way to demonstrating the value of IM within your organisation.

Dr Vanessa Douglas-Savage

Consulting Director