This is the first in an occasional series of blog posts providing practical guidance on how to create an information governance program and how successfully to execute on specific information governance projects.

One of the most common questions we hear from organizations about information governance is “How can we get started?”  We often counsel clients that the best way to get started is to look for a quick-win opportunity where information governance can add value.  Even a small project can serve as a catalyst to organically spur and mature information governance.

As part of its ongoing case study series, the Information Governance Initiative (IGI) recently profiled one of the largest retailers and distributors of tires and automobile parts in the United States.  Like most organizations, this company had legacy, digital data in departmental shared drives that it wanted to manage better.

Shared drives are notorious for containing information that is redundant, outdated and/or trivial, otherwise known as “ROT.”  At best, ROT data is useless.  At worst, ROT data can harm an organization.  But getting rid of ROT data requires an organizational understanding of what is important to the business.  Embracing information governance is the ideal way to help answer this fundamental question.

The IGI’s profile provides great insight into how a project to address ROT in departmental shared drives led to a revamp of the company’s information management practices, including a collaborative effort to address governance of digital data on a going-forward basis amongst key stakeholders.

Download the IGI case study (free IGI subscription required).

Achieving a mature information governance approach to data has its challenges, but the possibilities for getting started are virtually limitless.  The most important thing to remember is that any opportunity, no matter how small, can serve as the foundation for an organization’s information governance success.