The need for Content Governance

The OutCons team has worked with several clients globally and one thing many of them struggle with is content governance.  I personally have worked with clients ranging from 100 employees up to 100,000 and while the smaller companies have less of a problem, all of them have a need to streamline and enforce a content governance policy. 

Where most companies have issues with their content governance is at the beginning of the process.  Your role in the company creates a bias on how what you think is the best delivery method and that ultimately impacts the governance process and how well the message is received and consumed.  If you are in a Corporate University or Education function, you will most likely determine that you need a full blown eLearning course with a didactic structure including knowledge checks and smile sheets (surveys) to help you gather your feedback.  You may go through all of this when really, just an email and a call to action is necessary to deliver the message and elicit the correct response. 

Where content governance and a content governance process can help is at the beginning of the process and through the review cycles. It can help identify a significant amount of redundant messages or content and can help alleviate the user from having to wade through a sea of content that may or may not be important to the company or to them. 

Within the eLearning industry, companies worldwide face issues managing their content within their Learning Management System (LMS).  They may face differences in culture and differences in how people approach learning and training or they may face differences in how they are measured from a business perspective and these policies impact how their content is entered and measured in their LMS.  This inconsistency in governance and management of the metadata can cause significant issues and create a severe lack of efficiency in content management.  One example of this would be a large company with over 75,000 employees was rolling out a new product.  The introduction to this product and the training of the developers, sales people, and support people necessitated the creation and delivery of content to all these various groups.  Each of these groups went forward and created content for their own group rather than working on it together because one group was unaware of what the other group(s) were developing.

For the purpose of argument, let’s say that it costs 40 effort hours to create a 15-minute introduction to product X.  If the average employee makes $35/hour for instructional design, that is a cost of $1,400 per asset created.  In just this one product example, we see that rather than spend $1,400 on one asset, the company spent $19,600 just on the creation of 14 assets that were <5% different from each other.  They did this because they did not have a centralized governance process.  Additionally, this company spent an average of $180 per course on administration (180x14=$2,520).  In total this company spend $22,120 on extra work that was not necessary.  If they were able to collectively work on content, view pipelines of content creation, content availability, and quickly determine where a piece of content is in its life cycle, they would be able to realize a return on the investment in a system and process to help govern their content creation.

OutCons can help you realize this return on investment and can even help you justify the cost to implement a process and potential tools.  We have significant experience in the content governance processes, change management, tool development and deployment, and we can even help with the integration and hosting of your content so that your employees get back to the core business they are focused on rather than worrying about their content or the content governance process. 

Now that we have identified the need, our next discussion will cover how you execute on your governance plan!  Stay tuned to this blog for more info.

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