Magazine article Information Management

Don't Wait for an Invitation to the Table. Just Pull Up a Chair

Magazine article Information Management

Don't Wait for an Invitation to the Table. Just Pull Up a Chair

Article excerpt

The lessons learned in the wake of disasters like Hurricane Katrina, compliance nightmares like Arthur Andersen, and booming technology changes have forced the business world to take notice of the important role records and information management (RIM) plays in a company's success...or failure. Without a sound RIM program in place, companies are subject to financial loss, litigation, public embarrassment, and more.

There has been a lot of discourse about whether there is a place for RIM professionals to sit at the strategic decision-making table when it comes to policy, technology decisions, and compliance efforts. But the spotlight on RIM today has changed the question from "Is there a place at the table?" to "Will RIM professionals step up and take their place at the table?" Wall-flowers need not apply. The issues are too vital to organizational success for RIM professionals to continue wondering about what their role should be.

How vital their role is to an organization's survival was accentuated by the widespread failures in policy, lack of foresight, and technological inadequacies that were highlighted by the devastating Hurricane Katrina. In this issue of The Information Management Journal, you'll hear from two RIM professionals who were at ground zero. Their experiences, shared in "Dealing with Disaster" on page 28, emphasize the importance of technological savvy, a solid recovery plan, and a good dose of the reality that "It can and it may happen to me."

Being keenly aware of that, RIM professionals must take the lead in developing business continuity plans that will minimize the disruption and facilitate the resumption of business following a disaster. In his article, "Taking Charge: Disaster Fallout Reinforces RIM's Importance," Bruce Dearstyne writes about several issues brought to the forefront by Katrina, including the needs to safeguard vital records, to prepare for worst-case scenarios, to develop secure and stable electronic health records, and to have access to expedient and reliable information in crises. …

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