The Bigger Picture

I have talked about this at a number of conferences and it has recently started filtering into conversations with fellow practitioners.

The space of the conversation relate to the perspective of the subject matter expert, particularly in corporate functions within organisations, and the tendency for them to create what is considered best practice within their field in an organisation without understanding the impact it could have, without understanding the bigger picture.

I have seen it happen with IT, human resources, finance, facilities management, marketing & communications, information management and even knowledge management.

Here is an example of what I have witnessed.

 The recruiting function within the Human Resources department of a midsize organisation sets a standard for the recruitment process within the organisation. this process is based on best practice and is designed to minimise risk to the business in appointing the best candidate for the role. This process usually takes around two months from submitting the request to recruit to having someone start.

The business operates an office in Perth and is providing services into the booming Resource sector. Qualified people are hand to come by and expensive and in demand. Unless you are able to snap up a candidate quickly, someone else will.

The HR department default to the process minimising risk to the business. But even recruiting a reasonable candidate is better than not recruiting anyone at all.

What can be a quite complicated undertaking is over simplified and reduced to a process when an exercise in problem solving applying principles instead of process could provide a better outcome. Allow people to understand the risks and give them the resources to make decisions and hold them accountable for them.

It is something I am reminding information management professionals about at very opportunity. Here is an example.

What's missing?

Here we have a content lifecycle for web content that is a process. Can you see what is missing? Look again.

All right. This is where web content management can actually learn something from records management. In records management they consider the USE of the record to be very important (although sometimes lost in a compliance haze). No mention in this standard of when, how or why the content is used to generate value to the organisation or to the public.

Driven from an outcome perspective (completed process) as opposed to a value perspective. Is it a quantitative versus qualitative scenario?

More thoughts as I cogitate on the some more.



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