5 Steps to Implement SharePoint Information Governance

Governance, like a SharePoint deployment, is not a “one size fits all” affair. You need to make sure you anticipate the needs and goals of every division in your company. According to a new study from the Association for Image and Information Management (AIIM), updating and enforcing information governance policies as it relates to SharePoint is a priority for half of the companies surveyed.  

Last week, we discussed the points you must include in a holistic training plan that will enable your users to not just learn the basics of SharePoint, but how they can use it to improve the way they work. One of those points we raised was including your governance strategy. It’s vital that before you even begin training new users on how to use SharePoint, you make it clear to them when, how, and why you need to use the platform.  

As you start working on your governance plan, follow these five steps:  

  1. Set roles and responsibilities. Information governance is not an island – you cannot expect one person to envision and execute this for your entire company (unless you are a one-person startup). Your first step is to bring together a governance committee, including senior management across your organization so that you can truly take into account everyone’s needs and desires for SharePoint.  
  2. Determine initial principles and goals. The governance committee should then develop a governance vision, policies, and standards that can be measured to track compliance and to quantify the benefit to your organization. This is your beacon, your guiding light by which all subsequent policies should abide.    
  3. Classify your business information. Once you’ve clarified your aspiration for SharePoint and goals for governing its usage, you need to get your house in order. Organize your information according to an existing taxonomy, or create a custom taxonomy that includes all the information that supports your business solution.  
  4. Develop an education strategy. Now is the time to train your users. Show them how to use SharePoint according to the standards and practices that you are implementing and explain why those standards and practices are important. For a refresher on other essential training best practices, read last week’s blog post.  
  5. Develop an ongoing plan. Governance is not a once-and-done exercise. Make sure your governance committee meets regularly to review new requirements in the governance plan, reevaluate and adjust governance principles, and resolve conflicts among business divisions for IT resources.  

As you are putting together your governance plan, it’s important that you include that dirty s-word – yes, social – into it. We’re proud to offer you a great new white paper that focuses on three key areas to best apply social governance to your existing or new SharePoint environment and remove the stigma from the word “social” for your management teams.  

Governance is hard, but worthwhile. We can help: Content Panda for SharePoint reinforces governance and steers best practices by making information available where it actually applies: in the forms, libraries, and sites where the work gets done.  

Let us show you how we do it: 

Written by Co-Founder and CMO Heather Newman

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