Global off shoring of business has brought in its wake a number of information governance issues that the cloud-based applications are attempting to resolve.
Information governance practices have been changed and operational excellence is seen to be the outcome of information management excellence. Traditionally, the supply chain information of organizations resided in partner systems and not within the organization itself. Isolated and siloed systems made it impossible to manage information effectively and efficiently. The organization was constantly engaged in a struggle to run the supply chain and obtain a unified picture of the information system. Today, cloud enabled systems are designed to work across networks of companies and partner systems can be linked with organization systems in meaningful ways to benefit both parties to the transaction.
Cloud supply chain platforms move data processing and linking logic from the organization-end to the cloud. Boundaries are partially dissolved with adequate controls in place. Interestingly, this makes the information driven modern day company into a network of organizations that are linked together by the information they generate and use. Entire communities of users leverage the core technology or utility and operate upon a single version of the information available in the central database in the cloud. Core business functions such as procurement, manufacturing, or financial transactions are managed across the network. This has created a radical shift in the way companies view and handle information and manage it. Partnerships are not isolated contracts between two parties. They are contributive dimensions of an information eco-system that is flexible, hyper efficient, and integrated operationally for mutual advantage. The organizations succeed because they control the flow of information across the network and monitor and improve overall performance by being constantly agile and responsive to the changes in the eco-system.
Consequently, service vendors are expected to provide a broad range of value added information governance services. These services must enable the organization plan and manage the challenges thrown up by the new environment. The service must provide assurance that data integrity and confidentiality will not be compromised and user identities and entitlements will be entirely configurable by the data owner. To this end, data management, data security and data segregation must be fitted with relevant controls and organization must be endowed with the capacity to balance tradeoffs between their operational and service level objectives and their information security and compliance objectives.
The cloud service providers themselves are seeing a lot of opportunity of differentiating their services with value-add on information governance services. They see potential revenue streams, markets and capacity to increase their stickiness and enjoy larger margins.