Fixed vs. Dynamic Content: Lifecycle Management

By James Watson posted 04-25-2011 17:28


For many organizations, lifecycle management of content is an important capability to address compliance and litigation concerns.  But recognize that content takes many different forms, and the lifecycle management processes must be adapted to address the varying content types, with the primary distinction between fixed and dynamic content, as shown in the table below.  

For most organizations, coming up with a plan to address dynamic content is more challenging.  But as more organizations deploy social business applications and seek to manage content contributed to internal blogs and wikis, there is an increasing need for lifecycle management of dynamic content.

Following are a few best practices a firm should consider to begin its foray into dynamic content life cycle management.

  1. Inventory and Profile Dynamic Content Systems: First, conduct an inventory of dynamic content systems, profiling key characteristics of each. Summarize the multitude of different systems and usage scenarios in which your systems generate, store, and distribute dynamic content. Depict the critical characteristics of the content: the frequency with which they are updated, the span of contribution (e.g. for content authoring, review, and approval), as well as metadata, types of search parameters, and the governance associated with the content of each dynamic content system.
  2. Develop Usage Guidelines and Standards: Second, based on the inventory and profile analysis, define the appropriate usage scenarios for the different types of dynamic content in use within your organization. For example, how can you better manage your dynamic content contribution processes (e.g. authoring, review, and approval)? What content should be stored in, say, Documentum vs. SharePoint vs. Jive? What are the trade-offs a business unit should consider in its decision as to which platform to deploy or extend? What are the functional tradeoffs – the storage and retrieval implications, as well as the potential need for retention and disposition?
  3. Define a Lifecycle Management and Migration Process: Finally, determine how dynamic content should be managed and potentially migrated through the content lifecycle onto the appropriate systems as it becomes fixed content. For example, when should user-generated content within the Jive platform be archived? How can metadata be leveraged to automatically move content from SharePoint to Documentum?

With these three steps, an organization will be well on its way to addressing its dynamic content life cycle management needs. 

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