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Sound IM strategies lead to success in AI implementation
Thu, 4th Apr 2024

A new report by AvePoint, in partnership with the Association for Intelligent Information Management (AIIM) and the Centre for Information Policy Leadership (CIPL), reveals that companies with established information management (IM) strategies are more likely to benefit from the implementation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies.

The inaugural AI and Information Management Report involved data analysis from over 750 digital workplace leaders worldwide, illustrating key challenges that organisations face when deploying AI - with data quality identified as a prominent hurdle.

The survey discovered that less than half of the organisations feel confident about safely implementing AI. Prior to the implementation phase, 71% of companies were anxious about data privacy and security, whereas 61% voiced concerns about the quality and categorisation of internal data. Despite an apparent rise in the use of generative AI tools, fewer than half of the organisations have an AI Acceptable Use Policy. Frighteningly, one of the considerable issues during AI incorporation was the unintentional data exposure encountered by 45% of organisations.

Chris Shaw, UKI&SA Country Channel Manager at AvePoint, stated, "Our survey reveals that many organisations struggle with information management and data privacy, and these problems are only going to get worse as reliance on AI increases and more data is produced.” Dana Simberkoff, AvePoint’s Chief Risk, Privacy and Information Security Officer, added that a lack of adequate policies exposes organisations to avoidable risks and encouraged entities to improve their data protection and governance.

The study did highlight a contradiction between companies' perception of readiness for AI integration and their reality, with many obviously experiencing preparation gaps. Interestingly, 88% of organisations reported having an IM strategy in place, yet 44% lacked basic practices such as archiving, retention policies, and lifecycle management solutions. Data volume is growing too, with 64% of entities managing at least 1 petabyte of data, and 41% handling at least 500 petabytes.

Director of Information Management at AvePoint, Alyssa Blackburn, shared her observations that the growing volume of data being generated by companies, likely to accelerate with the increased use of AI, could exacerbate the current challenges being experienced unless organisations evolve or establish their information management strategies.

However, the report also revealed that effective IM strategies could pave the way to a substantial return on AI investments. Organisations with mature IM strategies were found to be 1.5x more likely to benefit from AI implementation. Despite this correlation, only 17% of organisations acknowledged the value of a robust IM strategy as the most effective way to ensure a return on investment for their AI endeavours.

President & CEO of AIIM, Tori Miller Liu, confirmed the study's demonstration of the importance of an information management strategy for successful AI integration. This year, organisations are greatly increasing their AI investments, with 83% planning to boost their AI spending and 79% investing in licensed AI. Yet, less than half of them currently offer AI-specific training.

President of CIPL, Bojana Bellamy, emphasised the critical need for a comprehensive accountability program for data privacy management and AI governance. She argued that good data management and AI governance should extend beyond legal compliance, as it is essential for long-term business success, building public trust and maximising the beneficial impact of AI.