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Research Reveals Organization’s Top Challenges in Achieving Governance Objectives

Just last week, EMC issued a press release regarding a recent study they did with the Ponemon Institute that explores the

Principal Product Marketing Manager, Information Governance

immediate issues organizations are facing regarding their enterprise governance, risk, and compliance (eGRC) strategy. The study finds that the largest barriers to meeting eGRC challenges are a lack of defined strategy and lack of enterprise cooperation and collaboration. The study surveyed 190 individuals involve in eGRC, mostly from large organizations. Only 20% of organizations have a clearly-defined eGRC strategy that pertains to the entire enterprise, and 33% admit they have no eGRC strategy at all.

Anyone familiar with Records Management, Archiving or eDiscovery in their organization knows that it is easier to create systems for specific data sets or regarding specific industry regulations. Well-defined spaces in heavily-regulated industries are easier to work on, because so many of the variables are explicit and understood. It is infinitely more challenging to create organization-wide systems that understand the complex interplay of risks and requirements that must be balanced.

In order to create enterprise-wide eGRC system, it’s important that organizations have communication between functional groups. GRC processes tend to fall into one of four groups or domains. These are IT, Operations, Finance, and Legal. In the study, only 28% of respondents report that their organizations enjoy frequent collaboration or cooperation among these domains and 12% admit their eGRC functions still operate in silos. Again, readers who work in eDiscovery or Records Management in particular are well aware of the challenges of getting IT, Legal, and the business to work together on these strategic priorities. Many of the challenges of records management projects lie in finding agreement with these groups or having one group become the road block to making decisions and moving forward.

The driving philosophy behind GRC, and what makes the effort worthwhile is the notion that GRC can help an organization:

  • Define the objectives, policies, procedures and standards by which it is managed;
  • Make informed decisions to seize opportunities while avoiding or managing negative events; and
  • Demonstrate adherence to laws, regulations, policies, contractual obligations and industry standards.

Our Information Governance team recently got back from EMC World where the overwhelming messages were focused on the ongoing journey to the cloud.  While cloud offers exciting new possibilities for business transformation and more efficient IT, it also has the ability to bring existing governance challenges into harsh relief. Developing an eGRC framework not only enables better management of risk and management of compliance requirements, but can also make the journey to the cloud a safer experience.  The first step for many of our Information Governance customers has been to use our archiving, eDiscovery, and records management tools to gain visibility into data, implement retention and disposition, create more efficient operational environments, and build repeatable business processes that are the foundation of good information governance and key components to building a strategic GRC approach.

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