handwritten names on cards
PHOTO: chuttersnap

AIIM changed its name to the Association for Intelligent Information Management in January of this year. The impetus behind the change to the Intelligent Information Management (IIM) moniker was to broaden the current purview to include all of the inerrelated fields and relationships across the enterprise which are pushing information management beyond the enterprise content management strategy or the content services offered by vendors. The AIIM site has a handy ebook (registration required) which dives further into the term. 

The name change was the focus of a number of conversations during the AIIM conference held April 10 to April 13 in San Antonio. The conference brought together information management and enterprise content management practitioners.

Related Article: Are We Really Having the 'ECM Is Dead' Conversation Again?

The Convergence of Data and Content

IIM is about both data and content, in other words about structured and unstructured information. We have “big data,” but we are drowning in an ever rising tide of unstructured “content.” Advanced analytics concepts can be used on both data and content. Robotic process automation can be used with both data and content. The list goes on. 

As our business partners continue to talk about digital transformation, and we want to build efficient, usable and attractive digital and physical workplaces, we need to consider how to manage our information more intelligently.

Related Article: Our Disappearing Content: Why Digital Preservation Matters

Bad Intelligent Information Management Practices

One way of figure out what constitutes intelligent information management is to consider how we are currently managing our information in un-intelligent ways. I presented a session at the AIIM conference called the good, the bad and the ugly of collaboration (I was trying to come up with a Texan theme, but the best I could manage was Spaghetti Western). We can play a similar game, but for the sake of brevity, I will give you a few examples of what constitutes somewhat less than intelligent management of information (a.k.a. dumb-dumb information management or DIM):

  1. Sending documents as attachments in emails. There remains much wrong with our use of email, including the cc'ing of inappropriately large numbers of colleagues, and sending documents as attachments, especially if they then live in .pst based personal “file stores."
  2. Managing version control in file names. Why are we still giving documents and data files names that include dates and version numbers and words like “draft”? We need to help our user communities get to grips with the concepts of metadata, and how to capture and manage it.
  3. Keep writing the same content over and over again, just so it can be published via different channels. There is plenty of technology to help us with “write once, publish everywhere” but just as with the environment, we need to get into that recycle / reuse mind set.
  4. Fail to empower business users to make the most of the “low code / no code” revolution for business process management. We must help and facilitate the people who know their business process the best to allow for efficient process automation.
  5. Ignore the advantages of communities of practice and enterprise social networks. Why help people help themselves? The value of community managers and ESNs in helping to run communities that facilitate learning, self service, expertise and knowledge sharing are now well understood.

I am sure you can come up with more specific un-intelligent information management practices that you see day in and day out at work, so please leave a comment and share with us any of the ones you have. Meanwhile, the AIIM community will try its best to help our organizations apply some intelligence to our information management efforts.