Striking the right balance between corporate IT and shadow IT requires possess¿ing detailed knowledge about how the employees in your company are really accessing and using information. This calls for network monitoring, content monitoring and restraint. Unfortunately, no one vendor can give you everything you need to do these things. This is because different types of workers use different types of data in—you guessed it—different ways. Forrester Research breaks the data into three broad categories.
Transactional content: This is information that’s as likely to come from a business partner as from someone in your company. It includes faxes and forms that people fill out, as well as scanned images and corporate information like tax files. This type of information is often closely aligned with a company’s workflow processes and business process management systems. According to Forrester, vendors whose tools work well for capturing this type of content include: 170 Systems, Adobe, Captiva, EMC, FileNet, Mobius, Whitehill Technologies.
Business content: This category includes the multitude of spreadsheets, documents and presentations that the people in your company use to do their jobs every day. These files—and the information that they contain—are typically found throughout an enterprise and are probably managed by any number of systems. But this information is also easily passed on as attachments or as unstructured data removed from the applications in which it is supposed to reside. Forrester says the following vendors help companies monitor the movement and whereabouts of this kind of data: ClearStory Systems, Extensis, Hummingbird, MDY, Oracle, Xerox.
Persuasive content: This is information that is meant to be shared with the outside world. It can be something that an employee puts in a blog or the marketing material that the company distributes. Forrester says the following vendors specialize in managing this kind of content: BroadVision, Ektron, FatWire, Percussion Software, Stellent.