How Information Management Helps You to Work Smarter



Online experience has leaped to the forefront of IT priorities: Customers demand secure, responsive, and feature-rich online interactions, and employees seek flexible and productive online work environments. To meet those expectations, IT leaders must improve their ability to manage and integrate data. Breaking down business application silos is a key step. Sandy Ono, executive vice president and chief marketing officer of OpenText, explains how effective information management and integration help organizations gain the “information advantage” by working smarter.

What forces are increasing the strategic importance of information management right now?

First, many organizations have moved beyond digital transformation, but to go further, they need to manage data better. Second, the rise of human-centric work, thanks to the pandemic, is causing some larger enterprises to suffer from talent attrition among the next generation. However, young people will stay at a company if they have access to instantaneous information wherever they happen to be. Third, there are new, higher standards for ESG [environmental, social, and governance] issues, encompassing diversity, inclusion, and climate innovation. These information elements must be managed across the supply chain for both your company and your vendors. And fourth, there are emerging technologies such as generative AI — ChatGPT, for example — that must be managed according to new rules and regulations around data privacy and data sovereignty.

What integration challenges are keeping IT leaders up at night?

Most IT leaders face the challenges of data sprawl and application sprawl, making it necessary to manage information across many different domains. We talk a lot about the promise of AI, but the truth is, solving this data choke point is a prerequisite for any advanced analytics. Moreover, IT leaders today face the challenge of limited resources to get the job done while not slowing down the business. What they need is automation that connects disparate data pools and enables access to insights that business leaders can act on.

Data security and regulatory compliance are critical imperatives. What challenges are IT leaders facing there?

It all starts with the notion of trust in software to ensure that information can be a currency. This is dependent upon the ability to meet several layers of compliance standards facing IT leaders. The first is data protection, privacy, and security that concerns individuals, such as GDPR, CCPA, and HIPAA. Then there are information governance and regulatory response measures that impact certain industries such as energy, financial services, and public sector (e.g., SOX, FINRA, and FERC). Next, software helps to manage for information integrity, authenticity, and visibility with different regulations in place in different jurisdictions (e.g., AODA, ISO, FDA, and EU NFRD). Lastly, as cloud technology has prevailed, there are cloud compliance standards with certain requirements for data security and sovereignty (e.g., FedRAMP, SOC 1, SOC 2, ISO, etc.). Compliance requires us to see how data is flowing across systems of records, systems of engagement, and systems of insight and make sure it is protected across all.

Looking beyond challenges, what opportunities does data present? What is the information advantage?

Digital has fueled the need for total enterprise reinvention. The information advantage is what we believe all companies need to strive for to win, beyond just having process advantage. There are five dimensions of the information advantage. The first is making intelligence part of your business through content management, experience management, process automation, and application modernization. The second is being connected. The OpenText Business Network and OpenText Digital Operations Management (e.g., AIOps) solutions enable you to manage the information exchange both inside and outside your organization. Third, secure information governance enables unfettered use of data, because the data is protected according to compliance requirements. Fourth, to enable scalability, you need to make the right deployment choices at the outset: You have to go small before you go big. That means taking a Lego-block approach by using APIs that work across multiple clouds, multitenant SaaS [software as a service], and managed services. Fifth, taking corporate responsibility means better managing new information requirements for ESG- and ED&I [equity, diversity, and inclusion]-oriented business decisions and staying ahead of new standards as AI [artificial intelligence]-powered innovations take center stage.

Data silos have proliferated at many companies over the years. How does a cloud-based “platform of platforms” help break down data silos?

Most companies have multigenerational IT that covers a broad spectrum of applications, many of which are in their own silos. These can be in data center, SaaS, multicloud, and hybrid-cloud environments. But you can’t just dump everything you have built up over the years; you need to retain the value from that data and those legacy custom applications. The OpenText Cloud platform connects all these disparate pieces. As data traverses that multigenerational IT landscape, you need to have the connective tissue of an intelligent core, a platform of platforms to modernize. That’s what OpenText does.

Many organizations would be eager to work with a trusted partner. What must a partner do to earn trust?

To be deserving of trust, you have to grasp the complexity of your customers’ problems by understanding the spectrum of multigenerational IT. You also must be dependable. After all, a company is trusting a partner with the operation of its environment. But a truly trusted partner must go further and participate in coinnovation by helping a company come up with unique solutions that generate business value.

How does implementing modern information management and integration enable organizations to deliver a great customer experience? Can you offer some examples?

Modern information management helps us to meet the experience demands of the instant generation — whether that is with employees, customers, or partners. In healthcare, we’re helping providers to digitally reimagine the patient experience. One healthcare provider is implementing enterprise content management — the ability to connect, store, and search both structured and unstructured data — to deliver information at the edge where patients are located. In another example, a large airline is using a mobile app to interact with customers. The app also enables airline staff to access data and information remotely. The result is a great customer experience enabled by information management. Looking around the corner into the future to what we call Business 2030, our goal is to enable enterprises to leverage information management as a force multiplier to create more of these experiences.

Learn more about working smarter with OpenText.