What is the information management process and why should you care?

In today’s hyper competitive business environment, information is one of every business’s most valuable assets. An organization with an efficient information management process is much more likely to make better informed decisions, find new value in their data and avoid compliance problems.

What is information management?

At its most basic, the information management process is the method by which your business collects, organizes, maintains and archives and/or disposes of information.

This includes both electronic and physical information, such as customer data, printed memos, meeting minutes, audio recordings, promotional videos and everything in between. The information management process covers every stage in the lifecycle of these assets regardless of format or department of origin.

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6 key stages of information management

An effective information management process can be broken down into six stages:

1. Collection

During this first stage, businesses need to make an important distinction between information that is both useful and accurate and information that can be safely discarded.

2. Storage

Storing information securely is extremely important, especially in the age of high-profile data breaches and privacy concerns. Storage systems should have proper user access controls, versioning and back-ups.

3. Curation

Businesses can add value to their information by keeping it effectively organized. When properly curated, the information can serve new business purposes such as data analytics, identifying trends and cooperating more easily with audits.

4. Dissemination

Proper dissemination of information needs to take a few important questions into consideration: who is receiving this information, in what format, how often and under what level of security? Businesses should establish these factors before starting distribution.

5. Archiving

Businesses should establish a policy regarding how long a piece of information will remain in circulation before being archived. They should also establish an efficient classification system for their archives.

6. Destruction

In the face of ever-growing storage costs and privacy laws, some businesses may decide that certain information is no longer necessary (or legal) to retain. In these cases, destruction is the last stage in the information lifecycle.

Information management systems

Information management systems (IMS) are software designed to store, organize and retrieve electronic information. These systems are extremely common for managing customer information, especially in the hotel, healthcare and call center industries.

Some of the biggest benefits of using an intelligent IMS include:

  • Increased efficiency
  • Much higher security
  • Greater transparency in decision-making
  • More granular analytics

Types of information management systems

IMS can be broken down into several categories according to their specialized business functions. Types include:

Business Intelligence Systems (BI)

Organizations prioritizing data analysis may use Business Intelligence Systems for better decision-making. They are particularly popular in the banking industry.

Customer Relationship Management Systems (CRM)

CRM systems are most often used by marketing, customer service, business development and sales teams to store customer information. This can include customer contact information, sales history and potential opportunities.

Sales Force Automation Systems (SFA)

SFA systems are a specialized component of CRM systems. They use artificial intelligence to automate many repetitive sales team tasks, such as lead tracking and generation, contacting prospects, and order management.

Transaction Processing Systems (TPS)

TPS are used to manage individual sales. There is a wide range of TPS types, from simple point-of-sale (POS) systems that you might see in the grocery checkout to complex booking systems like hotel reservation websites.

Knowledge Management Systems (KM)

Knowledge management systems provide essential customer service, such as automatically responding to customer questions and troubleshooting issues.

How to create your process for information management

Creating an efficient information management process begins with careful and strategic planning. You’ll have to define a few basic details about your organization’s requirements before getting started, including:

1. Scope of the information
a. What information needs to be managed? Is it physical, electronic or both?
b. How long will it have to be retained?
c. Does your organization already have a repository of information?

2. Constraints on the process
a. Are there any internal policies or legal requirements that dictate how you must manage your information?
b. Are there any compliance standards in your industry for managing information?

3. Security requirements
a. Who has access to this information at each stage of the information lifecycle?
b. Are you under any legal obligation to provide adequate protection for this information? (For example, if you’ve been charged with storing documents that contain intellectual property.)
c. Are there any information disposal requirements in the regions in which you operate?

4. Information lifecycle
a. For long-term storage, do your electronic files need to be converted into basic formats? (To avoid unreadable files in the case of discontinued software.)
b. In case of disaster, what are your data recovery options? How many back-ups will you need to invest in and how often should these be checked?

Maintain a robust information management process with Author-it

The right IMS for your organization will improve your overall business procedures, increase productivity and greatly reduce costs. Author-it does all three, and then some.

Author-it is an authoring management platform and CCMS built on a relational database  that automatically breaks down your documents into reusable future-proof components, like building blocks. This process removes the complexity and duplication that often occurs in document-based software, making the information management process far more streamlined.

Author-it’s all-in-one content platform is easy to use, scalable and offers enterprise level security for all of your documents.


To learn more about how Author-it can facilitate your information management process, contact Author-it’s team of experts or request a demo.


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