How should I manage my information?

What is Information Management?

Information Management is defined within the QGCIO glossary as "the means by which an organisation plans, collects, organises, governs, secures, uses, controls, disseminates, exchanges, maintains and disposes of its information; as well as any means through which the organisation ensures that the value of that information is identified and exploited to its fullest extent."

The Information Management Policy Framework (IMPF) identifies and defines the various domains which contribute to effective information management across the Queensland Government. It is an organising framework for establishing a common viewpoint and shared understanding of the broad scope of information management activities undertaken. Additionally, it can be used as a tool to categorise information management activities which can then form the basis for undertaking gap analysis and discovering duplication.

The IMPF has two levels of domains. Level 1 domains are high-level domains that cover all information management activities across Government. Each level 1 domain has one or more level 2 domains which are lower-level domains that define the specific elements of their parent domains. The level 1 domains of the Policy Framework are shown below.

Please select the relevant box in the diagram to view the policies within that grouping:

IMGovernanceKnowledgeMgmtIMAssetMgmtIMAccessnUseRecordsMgmtDataMgmtIS

To learn more about the above domains please select here ..

What Information Management tools are there?

ICT Profiling Program

Through the ICT profiling program, QGCIO collects, analyses and leverages a broad range of Queensland Government ICT data for numerous insight and strategic objectives.

For the 2016/2017 reporting year, the ICT profiling program included the collection of high-value information assets and services that support priority service delivery domains for Government.

The 2017/2018 ICT resources profiling activity is currently underway across agencies. This collection has been expanded to include all Queensland Government information assets. Once collated and analysed, a catalogue of high-value information assets reported through this process will be published here.

Information Asset Register

As a result of the above ICT Profiling program, there currently exists a register of the Information Assets collected by the ICT profiling activity from 2011 to 2017.

This can be accessed below in spreadsheet format by Queensland Government employees only:

The information asset collection process includes the important step of asset value determination. The model adopted by QGCIO is derived from Gartner's approach to measuring value of information assets (“Why and How to Measure the Value of Your Information Assets”, Gartner 2016) and incorporates the Australian Computer Society (ACS) Data Task-force's approach of making Gartner's valuation models more relevant to the public sector (Data Sharing Frameworks, pg 23, ACS Data Taskforce 2017). QGCIO selected a subset of the proposed value models and decided to target four dimensions of information value - business, policy, economic and research.

Information Sharing Authorising Framework (ISAF)

The Queensland Government is a huge generator and consumer of data and information.  Yet regularly, decision makers across all levels do not have access to all the requisite information they need when making crucial decisions – particularly if the information or data is located outside their line agency. Too often, access to crucial information and data is limited due to a misunderstanding of the risks and a lack of consideration on the overall value of sharing.

The Information Sharing Authorising Framework (ISAF) aims to change this status quo by helping agencies strike the right balance between understanding and mitigating risk and realising the benefits and outcomes when sharing data and information. It consists of a set of guidance and advice that assists those agencies who seek to establish and manage an information sharing activity.  The ISAF is broad in it's design and can facilitate sharing across the full spectrum of data and for a broad gamut of uses. These include:

  • to help agencies facilitate service and program delivery
  • inform policy development and implementation
  • provide data input to research and analytics activities
  • publish open data into the public domain

The ISAF strives to ensure Queensland Government information is exchanged between parties without friction, while respecting the privacy rights of individuals and balancing risks and opportunities. The development of the ISAF was led by QGCIO, in conjunction with the vendor partner GWI, and supported by valued contributions from subject matter experts across Queensland Government.

Let us know what you think!
If you have any thoughts, comments or feedback on the framework than we would love to hear from you! Please contact the QGCIO Information Strategy and Policy team at transformation@qgcio.qld.gov.au

Background

The inability to effectively share information between Queensland Government agencies has been highlighted extensively through many independent reviews of distinct Government service delivery failures. This includes the following watershed reports where ineffective information sharing is highlighted as an attributing factor:

Each report makes recommendations to improve information sharing within their service delivery domain and positive tangible progress has been made on this across multiple fronts and in many service delivery areas (In fact, the Information Sharing Authorising Framework draws heavily on the work conducted by the 'Our Child' Information Sharing Solution established in response to the When a child is missing report). However, the need to improve information sharing process and practice more broadly across all service delivery domains still remains. Subsequently, the Information Sharing Sponsoring Group (a Directors-General ICT Council endorsed oversight sub-committee) approved the development of an authorising framework to provide clear guidance and structure for information sharing across broad range purposes and for use by a broad range of agencies.

Structure

The framework is a group of modular components comprising mostly of process guidance, artefact templates and other relevant resources that assist in the establishment and subsequent management of an information sharing activity. For simplicity, these components are organised into four distinct phases which cover the life-cycle of an information sharing activity. The modular design of the framework allows sharing practitioners to easily select the right guidance or tools that best fit their individual circumstances and sharing objectives. A primary premise for the development of the framework was to change the nature of the information sharing conversations from being primarily about ascertaining and remediating risk (either real or perceived), to identifying and permitting information sharing opportunities to improve the business of Government.

The following key relationships assist in structuring the framework for use:

  • Each phase of the Framework has subordinated sub-phases. These sub-phases are comprised of a number of activities, with each activity producing or contributing to an enabling artefact.
  • The Prepare phase should always occur first as its primary output is a master information sharing agreement
  • The Manage phase is core to all other phases and can be considered the default operating phase of the framework. (i.e. the phase where a sharing activity sits when in it's production state)
  • Innovation can occur in any phase (and the Use phase includes formal opportunities to include innovation)
  • Information sharing ends in the ‘Retire’ activity of the Manage phase

The Four Phases of the Framework

Additionally, the framework has two mechanisms that strengthen and support an information sharing activity. These are:

  1. Permitted Usage Conditions Model
  2. Escalation Pathway

The Permitted Usage Model

The Permitted Usage Conditions Model provides a standardised way to give clear and consistent permission on the use of any shared information in an activity. Empowering information custodians to define permitted uses of shared information through a standardised model guarantees clarity of intent and removes the risk of liability through misuse across the information value chain.

Escalation Pathway

The Escalation Pathway provides a short circuit mechanism to help a stalled information sharing agreement where one or multiple party members aren't able to agree on the sharing of information. The pathway allows for decision makers to be provided a full and comprehensive understanding of the risks and opportunities to make an informed decision on sharing.

Components

The diagram below shows all the comprising artefacts of the Information Sharing Authorising Framework. Each artefact is the result of one or more activities conducted across each phase of the Framework. Key enabling artefacts include the Master Sharing Agreement and the Information Exchange Schedule.

Formal Agreement Instruments

The framework includes a hierarchical set of formal agreement instruments that aim to provide consistent, structured and reusable authorisation pathway for all information sharing activities established by the Framework. These formal agreement instruments are outlined in the table below.

Instrument

Level of Sponsorship

Description

Data and Information Sharing Charter (PROPOSED)

Director-General

Whole-of-Government executive agreement on core principles of information sharing which all government agencies strive to.

Master Sharing Agreement

Deputy Director-General

Agency executive agreement for information sharing between all relevant parties for a broad context.

Information Exchange Schedules

Executive Director

(or CIO)

Comprehensive details and protocols of information sharing activities in an endorsed context and with a narrow and specific purpose

The diagram below shows the hierarchical structure of the formal agreement instruments. The Data and Information Sharing Charter sets the direction of government, the Master Sharing Agreements authorise sharing for a broad purpose (such as child protection information) and the Information Exchange Schedules define in detail information sharing for a narrow and specific purpose, which has been endorsed under a broader context (i.e an Master Sharing Agreement)

Further Information

Information Strategy and Policy, QGCIO
transformation@qgcio.qld.gov.au
07 3215 3942

Information Sharing Pattern Library (ISPL)

With valued support and contributions from agencies, the Information Sharing Pattern Library is capturing information sharing case studies and architectural patterns to promote visibility and reuse of information sharing activities across the sector. The ISPL will also assist in identifying recurring characteristics that can be leveraged and reused to solve common information management and sharing problems - both across Queensland Government and with other jurisdictions.

As it continues to develop and maturity of information sharing increases across the sector, the ISPL will be the single point of reference for all information sharing activities in Government. The ISPL will include commonly used patterns to introduce consistency and reduce the effort involved in sharing information.

Why does it exist?

The ISPL's primary purpose is to collect and establish an empirical body of evidence of current information sharing activities. This current state evidence body then informs the information management and sharing agenda by:

  • Qualitative identification of enablers and barriers to information sharing activities
  • Developing a knowledge-base of key learnings and architectural patterns for reuse in future information sharing initiatives
  • Providing visibility to all stakeholders on how Government is sharing and using its information assets.

So what does the preliminary analysis indicate?

Preliminary analysis on the small but valuable quantity of data collected so far has identified a number of barriers to information sharing activities across Government. The three primary barriers as indicated by the data are:

  • Legislation
  • Privacy and
  • Compliance Requirements

The complete list of barriers and their frequency of occurrence is shown in the visualisation below:

What are the next steps?

As the ISPL continues to grow, further analysis will be undertaken to derive insights and understandings of information sharing activities. Any further analysis and insights will be published here on the QGCIO website.

Get involved

We are actively looking for further use cases or patterns to include in the ISPL. If you have a use case that you'd like to share please contact the Information Strategy and Policy team on the contact details below. We look forward to hearing your information sharing story!

Information Sharing Agreements Register

We've established the register of existing information sharing agreements to increase the visibility of sharing activities enabled by formal agreements. The register is an 'active' document (meaning it is continually updated and added to) and has the following key objectives:

  • to increase awareness that information sharing is happening across and within multiple service delivery domains
  • negate the need to negotiate new agreements by promoting the reuse of existing agreements
  • over time move towards more standardised approach to establishing and managing data sharing agreements across the sector (in conjunction with the Information Sharing Authorising Framework)

The Information sharing agreements register can be accessed by Queensland Government employees only.

Get involved

We are actively looking for further agreements to include in the register. If you have an agreement that you'd like to share please contact the Information Strategy and Policy team on the contact details below.

Further information

Information Strategy and Policy team
Email: transformation@qgcio.qld.gov.au.
Ph: 07 3215 3942

Discussion Forums

To view all the Information Management related discussions currently up on the QGCIO discussion forum please view the Information Management category.

This forum includes discussions on all upcoming changes to Information Management related policy and guidance.


Last Reviewed: 10 August 2018