email management

ECM Success in the Real World, Part 2: Email Management

Welcome to the second in a series of blogs highlighting real-world enterprises that have adopted innovative, new approaches to generating measurable success with ECM.

This blog turns the spotlight on an organization that’s effectively managing massively growing volumes of email to mitigate risk and cost. As we all know, unabated email growth has become a thorn in the side of most organizations. Annual growth rates of 500 – 1000% are common. Consequently, the traditional “keep it forever” mentality just doesn’t fly anymore; company after company has discovered it’s a one-way ticket to harried records managers, irritated legal staff, and runaway storage costs. What’s the recipe for success, though?

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One of my favorite customer panels from Enterprise World this year featured pipeline and terminal operator NuStar Energy sharing their journey to optimal email management. Their back-story is fairly conventional. As a relatively young company, NuStar had devoted most of their early operational efforts to fundamental, “keep the lights on” activities; there wasn’t the resources or bandwidth available for developing and implementing Records and Information Management (RIM) policies.

In my experience, that’s actually a pretty common refrain for many organizations, regardless of their maturity. And the outcome was predictable, as well. Leaving the end users to manage their own email footprint resulted in rapidly rising storage costs and concerns from Legal and Records Management (RM) about locating information for litigation and compliance purposes.

Simplifying is the Key to Success

Time was of the essence for NuStar, and the management team’s strategy for bringing their email challenge under control embodied a novel, new way of thinking about implementing ECM. Rather than attempt a traditional ECM integration that blanketed every facet of the enterprise, they identified a specific, tangible issue—email management—and set about sourcing and implementing the appropriate technology and best practices to solve it. Everything, from policy development to change management to user training, was directed toward that defined goal.

And, honestly, the results reflect that singular, focused mission. NuStar has been able to realize optimal governance by integrating ECM deep into the email process. They also enhanced productivity by providing a new generation of employees with the options to work the way that’s best for them.

There’s much more, behind the success of NuStar’s story—including the OpenText technology that enabled them to achieve a light-touch, multi-tiered email management program and lay an ECM foundation that’s being systematically extended throughout the organization. Take a few minutes to read all about NuStar’s dramatic advances here.

As an aside, it’s interaction like this that has me so excited about Enterprise World every year. Being able to experience first-hand how one organization has addressed and conquered email challenges with a solution that makes RM, legal, and business users happy is worth its weight in gold.

If you weren’t at Enterprise World this year, start by exploring the NuStar story above, then mark your calendar and plan on attending Enterprise World 2017 in Toronto next July. There’s plenty more where this came from!

Also, read the blog on ECM Success in the Real World, Part 1: Document Management.

About George Harot

George Harot
George is a Product Marketing Director for Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solutions, based in London, UK.

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