eDiscovery certification for the IG professional is still a long way off but the IGP must be familiar with eDiscovery and its relation to information governance inside the organization.
There is no shortage of articles about the increased importance of information governance (IG) and its effect on the communities of practice of legal, risk, privacy, security, IT and RIM. There are many definitions describing the practice of information governance, but simply put, information governance is described as the activities and technologies that are used to help organizations maximize the value of its information assets while minimizing associated risks and costs associated with those assets. IG eDiscovery is an area for IG professionals to stake a claim, considering the identified risks are specifically related to regulatory investigations and litigation. Indeed IG is the first area of the EDRM and important in defining eDiscovery.
This week our blog takes a look at the IGP (Information Governance Professional) certification, and its relevance to our work in eDiscovery. For anyone coming from a background of managing discovery in a corporate environment, this certificate is one that is worth pursuing for several reasons:
- The demand for IGP in job descriptions such as legal analysts is increasing,
- Our clients are telling us that the strategic planning of governance initiatives in their organizations includes plans for preservation, hold and ESI workflows, and
- There are some industry predictions that eDiscovery may become a part of the information governance knowledge areas.
ARMA describes the IGP candidate as someone who has earned the only certification “that demonstrates he or she has the strategic perspective and the requisite knowledge to help an organization leverage information for maximum value while reducing the costs and mitigating the risks associated with using and governing this important asset,” which describes most of us who work with eDiscovery projects.
BIA offers education and testing in the IG arena for its employees because information governance intersects all of the processes and duties we perform on a daily basis – especially with our corporate clients. For those professionals that have IT security and eDiscovery certifications, they’ll find that this certification adds value by complimenting those certifications.
Managing Information Risk and Compliance
Understanding and mitigating information-related risks through such activities as researching and monitoring legal, regulatory and industry-specific compliance requirements; and creating and monitoring internal policies and procedures. The IGP collaborates with stakeholders to determine acceptable risk levels, and then designs and implements methods for measuring and monitoring the effectiveness of the organization’s plan to mitigate its risk.
Developing IG Strategic Plan
Developing a strategic plan that demonstrates an in-depth understanding of the organization’s business goals, corporate culture, financial resources, and commitments.
Developing IG Framework
Establishing the parameters of the organization’s IG efforts, including developing policies and standards the organization should meet; defining the authority, roles, and responsibilities the organization must establish; designing IG program communications and training; and developing audit and enforcement mechanisms to ensure the IG program can be measured, controlled, and improved.
Establishing the IG Program
Determining the IG program scope and goals, such as identifying specific program components, acquiring a mandate from executive leadership, establishing reporting requirements, assigning specific roles and responsibilities, establishing specific program metrics and desired outcomes, and implementing and managing the IG program.
Establishing IG Business Integration and Oversight
Aligning the IG strategy and program to enhance business goals, needs, and objectives. The IGP works closely with business units to determine steps for implementing the IG program in their divisions and for ensuring it is monitored and audited periodically to confirm the business is complying with changing laws and to confirm the IG program does not impede the business goals.
Aligning Technology with the IG Framework
Partnering with IT leadership to understand the organization’s technology landscape, the ways technology is used by the business, and how to align the IG and Technology teams’ strategies and operations, including hardware, software, and data lifecycle management. The IGP also evaluates technology trends that affect IG eDiscovery and partners with IT to assess opportunities and threats.
To better understand how eDiscovery fits into the enterprise as a corporate business process, read our article, eDiscovery as a Standard Business Practice.