Information Management System: Why is it Necessary for Business Growth?

By Nafees Ahmed, CIO, Indiabulls

Business organizations at all levels either enterprises or small business houses have understood its importance and transforming themselves into digital. Digitization comes with its own set of challenges which is retrieving the relevant information quickly and correctly. For data retrieval, organizations are commonly using data management but to make it more effective a strong Information Management System (IMS) is required. IMS can be applied to any system of software that facilitates the storage, organizing and retrieval of information within a computer system for large domains of archived information. The conservative approaches of data collections are both intricate and extensive. A good records management program provides an organization with the capability to associate with new technologies and take advantage of their many benefits. Every business, program or system must address well-defined objectives, which will add value, either directly to the bottom line or toward the achievement of the organization's goals and objectives.

Significant amount of time is spent on searching for missing or a misfiled record. Therefore, a well-organized records management program is essential for information management systems so that information retrieval can be enhanced, with corresponding improvements in efficiency and productivity. Moreover, a well-managed information system acting as a corporate asset enables organizations to objectively evaluate their use of information and accurately draft a roadmap for improvements that help them to enhance business revenues. For making search more effective, search strategy may vary according to the available sources. In spite of such guidance, sometimes probable pertinent answers are missed because all potentially relevant databases or information sources are not searched on every query. 

The process of generating query may contain a knowledge base including a thesaurus that has programmed and embedded complex search queries or set of commands that allow users looking for information to formulate their queries. This approach also includes defining categories for the types of document. Selection of these defined categories may be performed automatically based on predetermined criteria relating to the personal characteristic of the user or selected set of categories selected by the user.

Each country has its own set of regulatory requirements. These laws can create major compliance glitches for businesses and government agencies since they can be difficult to locate, interpret and apply. The only way an organization can be reasonably sure that it is in full compliance with laws and regulations is by operating a good information management system which takes responsibility for regulatory compliance, while working closely with the local authorities. Failure to comply with laws and regulations could result in severe fines, penalties or other legal consequences. This makes the need of IMS. One of the major objectives behind the implementation of Information Management System and Programs is to minimize the risk associated with business litigation and potential penalties. The same is also applicable with Government Agencies. A better managed record management program not only helps to improve the business efficiency but also helps in reducing the liabilities associated with documented information disposal by providing for their systematic, timely disposal during the normal course of business.

Information Management System has become the necessity of business establishments in present scenario and it will keep growing in future as well. It has also increase the potential risk of information security and/ or misuse of information. Keeping in view of this, the Government of India is also expanding the perimeter of regulatory requirements which should satisfy the requirements of law of land as well as helpful in safeguarding the business need for business establishments. One important aspect in IMS is safeguarding the vital information i.e. every business establishment whether it is public or private requires a comprehensive system for safeguarding its vital business as well as customer records and information from catastrophe or disaster, because every business establishment is vulnerable to loss. So while selecting a program for managing their vital business information, make sure that it should be capable of preserving the integrity and confidentiality of the preserved information. This is especially the case for financial information whereby Enterprise Resource Planning systems are being deployed in large companies.

At the end, implementing an effective information management system will acquire the advantages to the business. This can be achieved if the business establishments gain insight to better align business strategies and identify critical relationships and gaps along four key dimensions which are people, process, culture and infrastructure. An effective information system provides a defined structure for business organizations to evaluate themselves relative to these dimensions. Business establishments can maximize the output and impact of information strategic corporate asset by understanding and improving alignment with these critical dimensions to gain competitive advantage.

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