Miktysh House of CARDS
Business as usual for the User. A concept in managing your information.
The impact of mobile, social, and cloud information has blurred digital and physical worlds and created a window into the unknown. The exertion of these technologies has a significant impact on records management, resulting in the requirement for finding a solution to the digital nightmare and providing the ever elusive dream of information management and recordkeeping compliance.
Effective records capture has always been a nightmare, however the emergence of Freedom of Information (FOI) and Right to Information (RTI) legislation (Qld) has added additional pressure. Records Managers can feel like their House of CARDS has collapsed. Instead of effectively managing electronic and paper records, records staff find themselves policing others who are negligent in appropriate information capture for the organisation. Information silos extend the discovery process for Records Managers seeking the latest version. Silos also will inhibit users working effectively and efficiently across the organisational platform. The collaboration stops at the silo door. Whilst there are organisations who have successfully implemented systems to capture information and reduce paper use and network drives – the user experience has not always been remarkable.
During the course of the past 18 months one of our clients has been going through a major business restructure which included staff, information collections and facilities. It was during this time, the business was bombarded extensively with RTI/FOI requests.
Partially to blame was the restructure as resources and components of the business moved to a more commercial environment, while others were to become government owned. The organisation itself had lost the confidence in the completeness of their records and information as too much corporate knowledge and supporting information was leaving the building with contractors, long term reassigned employees and short term projects.
The Records Manager was dealing with a vexing mass of information daily and found less success in capturing organisationally compliant records as digital sources increased. Additionally the reliance on staff to ensure information was captured for the organisation resulted in information overload, dark data and duplication. In other words, a nightmare of digital information. As the business was being completely restructured and moved to an increased regional focus to facilitate service delivery, response times for information was becoming laborious and difficult for the staff who remained.
Records management has typically been associated with out of control information storage, ballooning technological expense and impossible compliance targets. The Miktysh team needed to find a methodology to build a seamless, uninterrupted and compliant solution; enabling the organisation to drive digitisation and pull information from any platform using an invisible framework that empowered the business to overcome the recordkeeping nightmare. The business required something which did not impact any further on the change fatigued staff. As Miktysh were existing partners with the organisation, our consultants navigated their information landscape and supported them in developing a way to deal with their digital information nightmare, using the structural pillars of recordkeeping we refer to as our House of CARDS (Capture, Access, Retention, Disposal, and Storage) solution.
Typically, when organisations discover a full house and no room to accumulate more electronic information, they simply add storage (physically or virtually). It can be a cheap option, but not necessarily viable, safe or secure in the long term. A large percentage of stored digital information has a short legislated lifespan and is not required to be retained. So why keep it? Our clients had little experience and understanding of the specific requirements for keeping information but were ready and willing to work smarter. Many staff were having difficulty trying to rummage through a mountain of information that may no longer be needed to satisfy the outstanding RTI/FOI requests. It was becoming more difficult to justify constantly increasing storage when the organisation was finding it difficult locating all information; lost in the abyss because it was not saved in a structured system, removed mistakenly, or by design, or just buried in network drives.
By leveraging off the existing systems within the organisation, House of CARDS allowed the corporate information to become visible and not siloed in individual systems. The solution for our client needed to be adaptable now and in the future. Even though they had restructured and minimised staff levels, there were still staff recent to the organisation who were almost born digital and who had experienced a lifetime of information that is electronic – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, email, Google docs and the internet. They needed to have a similar experience for information access in their workplace.
Information is everywhere, in every form and the organisation wanted to ensure it was managed more effectively than has been done in the past. The Records Manager had looked to acquire new tools to capture the required information without imposing additional work. The organisation did not want to revisit any instances of failed implementations of information capture where the organisation’s House of CARDS had toppled and rebuilding was impractical and costly. The business needed a seamless integration to avoid disruptions to business as usual and their customer expectations for service delivery.
Our client organisation wanted to expand their thinking about information capture to encapsulate everything rather than just records for compliance. The Miktysh House of CARDS solution leverages existing software and applications (SharePoint, eDRMS, Network drives) providing a structured approach across the same information, utilising the same business classification structure. An initial mapping of information stored within these repositories was required against the organisation’s business classification scheme and retention and disposal schedules. An initial de-duplication was performed during the analysis. A lot of hard work went into building a successful solution.
Miktysh’s bespoke methodology to help build the organisation’s House of CARDS solution ensured staff were capturing information created or received by the organisation in any format and across its lifecycle according to legislated requirements. This provided real time access to the same information across all platforms and devices with the information secure and accessible by all staff. Fortunately the Records Manager and the Miktysh team were able to do a lot of the hard work with the existing systems in the background and not seen by the staff.
The solution comprises:
Capture: Information is captured and saved by the users via the network drive, SharePoint or eDRMS utilising their preferred system and the business classification structure.
Access: Users access their information through their preferred interface – SharePoint, eDRMS, Network drive. Access to information is leveraged using the eDRMS security features and imposed via the users preferred interface.
Retention: All documents are managed by the eDRMS in the background. Retention and disposal is administered using eDRMS functionality. This is facilitated by the Records Management area and prevents early or unauthorised destruction.
Disposal: Leveraging eDRMS functionality for reporting, disposal is carried out in line with approved retention and disposal schedules.
Storage: Continual increase in storage requirements and duplication is reduced as users have access to the same information exposed across all systems.
House of CARDS allowed seamless recordkeeping which meant the Records Manager could focus on those tasks of managing the restructure of the organisation and the retention and disposal or transfer of information to the new entities without concern that information was lost or not correctly distributed. Staff on site were mostly unaware of the changes to any of the systems apart from the new business classification structure. The attitude to information management improved within a very short timeframe, as staff were able to work as usual and locate more information on specific subjects than ever before. Confidence levels in accessing information as needed improved and were noted by all staff.
Each member of staff continued to work as normal and access information in their preferred way, but found it easier to share information, locate and store information securely. Strategically, the organisation can now manage information in place. They reduced their onsite digital storage and have hosted the House of CARDS on their in premise environment.
Miktysh can show you how to change your digital nightmare into a digital dream. We are happy to discuss how you can build your own House of CARDS and show you the options which allow you to set up policies that automatically manage information in the eDRMS, all the while, letting the staff happily do business as usual. Your House of CARDS can be built using all data, all sources of information across the organisation with minimum pain points, leveraging existing business systems.
For more information, please see key benefits of the House of CARDS here.