Unlocking your Dark Data Archives

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Have you ever moved homes? If you have, you have gone through the daunting task of reviewing your documents in the folders and deciding to keep them or throw them away. If you keep them, you will either put them into a modern file cabinet that isn’t rusting or put them into a locked fireproof box if they are very important like birth certificates, passports, etc. For those documents getting thrown away, you decide to shred some because of personal information. Imagine what an organization needs to go through to do the same thing at a corporate level especially if mergers and acquisitions have occurred.

Why Should an Organization Evaluate Their Archives Holding Documents of Record?

Do you even know what is in some of these old archives? If the answer is “no,” then this means that you can’t purge any records because if you don’t know what is in a repository, then it may need to be keep per your record retention schedule or it may be a part of an active legal situation.Door to dark room with rainbow light. Background Illustration.

Finding the Keys to Unlock Your Dark Data Archives:

Key#1 – Take an Inventory: This sounds like a simple task, but for most organizations it isn’t. Most organizations have 20 archives containing documents of record. Most of these old archives are end-of-life and out of support.

Key#2 – Choose Your Target Enterprise Archive: Your target Enterprise Archive must be proven with a large install base, actively developed, built on an open architecture to deliver meaningful data sets to Analytics and have an inherent capability for records retention and lock-down.

Key#3 – Choose a Migration Partner that Understands the Old Archives and the Target Archive:   This is INCREDIBLY important. The partner must have a long history of migrations with a proven methodology and have developed tool kits for the old archives.

Key#4 – Take the Opportunity to Discover, Verify, Clean-Up and Modernize during the Migration:  Most skilled migration partners bring the old archives into a common format, such as XML, before moving that information to the target archive in the target format. During this time, your organization has a tremendous opportunity to verify that all records being moved are accurate and unchanged to the bit level, identify the records that can be purged and do not need to be moved and select the format that best suits your organization to make sure that you “future proof” your documents of record.

Key#5 – Is This the Right Time to Go to the Cloud?: To the Cloud or not to the Cloud? That is the question. Almost all organizations are trying to answer this question and many have selected a “Cloud first” approach for all new applications. Whether or not you are going to Cloud today, your strategic Enterprise Archive should have a Cloud deployment option today in case your organization chooses a Cloud option in the future.

I invite you to watch this short recording which demonstrates today’s modern enterprise archival and retrieval system, IBM Content Manager OnDemand, that feeds analytics with trusted data for data driven insight.

Worldwide Sales Leader and Senior Certified Consultant, CM OnDemand Solutions, IBM

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