Today, we announced DocAve Governance Automation for SharePoint, which enables end-to-end service request management atop the SharePoint platform and thereby allows organizations to define, implement, and enforce governance policies.
We first introduced the product last year at SharePoint Conference, and I’m so excited to finally bring this product to the general public. We’ve known for years now that a tremendous need among our customer base – and the wider global SharePoint community – has been controlling the myriad custom service request systems that organizations had been building for their deployments in a way that abided by organizational governance policies while not hindering business productivity.
The value proposition is simple: Why take the time, resource, and money to build, maintain, and support custom solutions internally when you can automate controls for governance policy implementation and enforcement? Focus on your business, and don’t lose time and resources to manually enforcing governance across the entire organization.
What’s at stake? According to a Gartner Research report (“Predicts 2012: Information Governance and MDM Programs Gain Traction”) authored by Debra Logan, Gartner Research Vice President, by 2016 it is predicted that 20 percent of CIOs in regulated industries will lose their jobs for failing to implement the discipline of information governance successfully.
There are numerous service requests that we are looking to automate in DocAve Governance Automation, but we have prioritized the service requests that we will offer immediately based upon the frequency of use cases from our customers. This release of Governance Automation will include the following:
1. Site Collection Request: Provision the site collection, and automatically define accountability, apply classification, permission, data protection, and content retention policies with full auditing to monitor governance policy compliance.
2. Site Request: Provision the site, apply appropriate classification, security, data protection, and storage policies upon management approval.
3. Site Collection Lease: Automatically notify accountable business contacts for the site collection of policy-based leases expiring, ensuring they renew the lease as well as archive or delete the site collection.
4. Site Collection Inactivity: Automatically notify accountable business contacts for the site collection of policy-based duration of inactivity, ensuring they choose to either continue to use it or archive/delete the site collection.
What is a common theme among these service requests? The notion that they need to be customizable and configurable to meet organization’s specific business needs. So whether one company needs a special step during site provisioning, or another wants to use the same site template and hide the option on the form, Governance Automation can enable it all by allowing you to configure and define policies, metadata, approval processes, permissions, and auditing parameters. There is no silver bullet for governance, and Governance Automation gives companies the runway to create their own policies that satisfy their specific requirements.
By providing a service catalog to the business users, organizations can continue to empower them to manage their content and delegate the actual service request actions to Governance Automation. The key with this is that you no longer need to grant business users elevated privileges such as Full Control, which introduces the need for training and also the risk of business users making changes and configurations that are difficult to fix. Another key advantage of Governance Automation is that it utilizes the power of AvePoint’s enterprise-class management platform, DocAve 6, which includes modules for data protection, administration, replication, storage optimization, compliance, reporting, and migration. Why is this important? It allows companies to move beyond simple site creation and applying permissions with site provisioning, incorporating service levels for backup, storage tiers, auditing, and archiving.
Lastly, Governance Automation includes a reporting engine that allows organizations’ governance committee members who have the appropriate rights to see data on business usage of SharePoint such as “how many requests are received, and from what divisions”, which will help measure the adoption rates of the deployment across the organization and enhance ongoing realignment of cost allocation (read: lower total cost of ownership).
I look forward to sharing with you more interesting use cases Governance Automation is able to address as more of our customers adopt the product. In the meantime, feel free to browse our Governance Automation web page or the following blog articles I’ve written on the topic of governance, as well as Governance Automation screenshots: