Gartner predicts that, by 2017, 33 percent of Fortune 100 organizations will experience an information crisis, due to their inability to effectively value, govern and trust their enterprise information. In a press release Andrew White, research vice president at Gartner states “There is an overall lack of maturity when it comes to governing information as an enterprise asset. It is likely that a number of organizations, unable to organize themselves effectively for 2020, unwilling to focus on capabilities rather than tools, and not ready to revise their information strategy, will suffer the consequences” and goes on to say “Information is becoming the competitive asset to drive business advantage, and it is the critical connection that links the value chain of organizations.”

In the recently-released Digital Workplace 2014 in the Connected Organisation report from Jane McConnell one of the many charts that showed a significant difference between Early Adopters and the Majority is the degree of maturity (assessed on the Meta Group model) in the management of information. Taking the top two levels (Organised and Managed) the survey shows (p105) that 48% of Early Adopters were at this level but only 6% of the Majority. That single chart indicates the importance of a pro-active approach to information management in achieving an effective digital workplace.

Organisations still seem to think that if they have a Big Data strategy then success in the digital economy is assured. Commenting on this approach Andrew White notes “When we say ‘manage,’ we mean ‘manage information for business advantage,’ as opposed to just maintaining data and its physical or virtual storage needs.”

Over many years in this business (including five years competing with Gartner!) time after time I have heard CIOs take the position that if Gartner recommends a strategic direction then that’s the direction they will adopt. So why (in the case of information management) have the recommendations consistently made by Gartner (and others) over the years been equally consistently ignored? 

Martin White