Return on Information: The New ROI?

Topics: Records management

Information forms the core of almost every essential business process. If you have fast, reliable and safe access to information, you can improve customer service, increase business process efficiency and fuel growth.

To achieve both fast access to information and keep the avalanche of information secure requires an investment: You can maximise your ROI, or Return on Information, by investing in records management best practices.

Managing Information With an Eye on Returns Successful organisations maximise their ROI by managing their records and information with the potential business value of each type of information asset in mind. Take the following steps to do the same.

Step 1. Consolidate paper records. According to AIIM, 21% of organisations say their volume of paper is increasing, despite conventional wisdom to the contrary. Problems result, including disorganised files and lost paper. And the cost of wasted office space can be surprisingly high.

In addition, many organisations store records with multiple vendors. Bringing those records to a single vendor can help cut storage costs (think volume discounts). It also ensures that your records are managed under the same set of rules and policies.

Step 2. Get rid of what you don’t need. PwC reports in Beyond Awareness: The Growing Urgency for Data Management in the European Mid-Market that 36% of businesses keep all of their information, just in case they need it. That said, there’s an excellent chance your company keeps a great deal of records unnecessarily. This practice can open up your organisation to greater liability during legal discovery, because anything you retain is discoverable. If you have a records retention schedule, you are in a better position to reduce storage costs.

Step 3. Keep retention schedules up to date. A records retention schedule categorises documents according to their statutory retention period. Regulations and laws—and, therefore, retention rules—change. Choose the retention approach that best suits your company’s needs. Sometimes that means a one-size-fits-all plan. However, it can also call for an exception-based strategy that recognises individual and unique requirements, while also reducing the complexity of an individual retention schedule for different stakeholders within an organisation. For best results, consider automating as much of the process as possible.

Step 4. Create a global classification scheme. Classify all your records, using tags to identify record type, date generated, access authorisation and other identifiers. Being as granular as possible makes it easier to follow retention schedules. It also helps you to find the most accurate and relevant information for mining new business opportunities, remaining competitive and operating more efficiently.

Working with a trusted partner can lower costs, deliver the information you need when you need it, and ensure more secure document management. You can also escape the risk of an information breach.

Call it the new ROI or just good business. Either way, you’re talking about a strategy that makes sense.

To find our more, download our mini guide to records retention, The Basics or Records Retention. Or contact our Information Management team. We’ll connect you with a product and services specialist.

Iron Mountain Recommends: Better ROI With Information Integrity

Improve your return on information by ensuring information integrity. After all, information is more valuable when you can trust it.

In pursuit of integrity, Iron Mountain recommends that organisations ensure that their records are:

  • Accurate and free from error or defect
  • Consistent with a standard, rule or policy
  • Unmodified and never changed in form, meaning or character
  • Maintained in a consistent and uniform manner over their lifecycle
  • Accessed only by authorised people using authorised processes
  • Trackable via an audit trail throughout their lifecycle