CEOs and information managers struggle to understand each other, research shows

Making the most of information may be a priority for many businesses, but a new study has exposed a lack of understanding between those who manage and those who use information.

The study, by storage company Iron Mountain, found that 89% of UK business leaders don’t fully understand what their information managers do.

In return, 56% of UK records and information managers admitted they don’t know exactly what senior business leaders want and need from information – with 66% confused about the information needs of colleagues in marketing, manufacturing, finance and other departments.

The study showed just one in ten (10%) of the business leaders surveyed had complete confidence in their organisation’s ability to extract the full value from its information.

>See also: The age of the Chief Data Officer has well and truly arrived

These trends and their impact are echoed elsewhere, with another study finding that just 27% of firms say their employees have access to the data they need, and 42% admit that access to their data is cumbersome.

“In today’s knowledge-driven world our study has revealed an unexpected obstacle on the road towards return on information,” said Sue Trombley, director of professional services at Iron Mountain. “This must be addressed as a matter of urgency if organisations are to have any chance of extracting the full value from their data.

In brighter news, the study also found that 88% of records and information managers have confidence in their ability to help businesses maximise the value of their information.

“This suggests that the gap is created by a lack of understanding and poor communication rather than inability to deliver,” Trombley added. “Business leaders need to better understand what records and information managers can contribute. At the same time, information professionals need to align more closely with business needs.”

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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