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The role of artificial intelligence in information management

Authored by David Gould - Apr 25, 2023


A perspective from David Gould, Chief Customer Officer

It strikes me as paradoxical that businesses feel very secure in using artificial intelligence to let people know, for example, when it is safe to make a lane change at 75 miles per hour, yet they are reticent to use the same technology to classify and manage information through its lifecycle. Artificial Intelligence is used almost every minute of every day, in nearly every smart device we own. 

For information management, AI is not a buzzword or a trendy topic. It’s a real technology with a real purpose. The emergence of machine learning, natural language processing, and other variants of Artificial Intelligence provide a significant advancement for discovering, classifying, consuming, retaining, and disposing of data no matter its source, location, or creator. AI is the key technology foundation enabling users to manage their data at scale, take their data farther, and make it more dimensional than ever before.

My personal experience and perspective on AI has evolved significantly over the past 12 years. The biggest change is that results generated by AI are actually explainable.  You no longer are “required” to have PhDs in Bayesian Inference or Shannon Communication theories to understand what is happening behind the curtain. 

Today’s AI technology can demonstrate, and we can readily explain, HOW the software processed and produced the answer. There is a logical explanation available each and every time a result is provided. Conversely, when I first helped bring the HP ControlPoint solution to market back in 2012, I remember how difficult – and uncomfortable –  it often was to explain the reasoning behind the result.  

Many still compare AI to a black box solution. Like all technologies, AI is rapidly evolving and provides much more explainable reasoning behind the processing than ever before. There is a very noticeable lack of trust and confidence when using AI-based tools to analyze, classify and manage information across the enterprise. In fact, there is a discernable level of apprehension, even disdain, among experienced and savvy information governance professionals.

At EncompaaS, we have given this conundrum a great deal of thought – especially when it relates to how we are optimizing algorithms and providing “explanation” tools to effectively use AI to analyze and manage very large datasets. 

We have seen three core drivers that impact the adoption of AI-based solutions across the enterprise:

It’s a threat to my job

AI is a powerful enabling tool. Given the amount of daily data volume created and the need to “fact-check” the assigned manual classification, not even a huge team of individuals can keep pace. 

Instead of reclassifying manually, handle this with AI-driven solutions. Let the technology do that work for you. AI frees your time to focus on what is most important: creating and managing policy, enabling colleague productivity, and protecting your company’s brand reputation by discovering and protecting sensitive or crown jewel information.

Humans can do it better

The problem is that most large enterprises are creating upwards of 10,000 pieces of content an hour. 

It is physically impossible for those responsible for data management to physically review that size of information corpus without technology-enabled support. Farming out file boxes of content to low-cost locations for manual review will undoubtedly produce a poor and inconsistent result. 

I don’t trust it

When AI found its way into applications, it was difficult to explain the result. Most of the focus was on the concept of confidence – how confident was the software that the document being returned was what the user expected.

However, accuracy – supported by recall – is a much better and more meaningful metric to evaluate the effectiveness of AI. Confidence has always been a problem to explain and, frankly as the key metric, it didn’t do much to create more “confidence” among potential buyers to acquire any AI-based auto-classification solutions.

AI is the driving technology that will give information, data, and records managers more power, more control, and more extended uses of information than ever before. Our goal at EncompaaS is to make you feel more comfortable with the AI imperative and help you better understand how this technology will revolutionize your information management practices throughout your enterprise.

David Gould

Chief Customer Officer

To explore how AI, integrated seamlessly with EncompaaS, can elevate your organization's information management, please contact me [email protected] for more information.

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