#SLAtalk: Proving the Value of Information Services

As information drives the world forward, the way we manage information is evolving at an increasingly rapid pace. While we recognize the increasing value of investing in information services, it becomes critically important to ensure stakeholders and clients do as well. So, how do we do that?

Join us for an hour-long Twitter chat on Thursday, April 3rd. Session 1 will begin at 3:00 pm EDT (7:00 pm UTC). If you can’t make that, we’ll have Session 2 at 10:00 pm EDT (2:00 am UTC on April 4th). (What time is that where you are?)

In 2013, SLA worked with Financial Times to publish The Evolving Value of Information Management – and the five essential attributes of the modern information professional.

The report focuses on how information services are perceived by executives, and finds common trends on how to ensure these services are being utilized to the fullest. These trends are boiled down into 5 essential attributes that, when exhibited, lead to an effective, lasting relationship between the information provider and the user(s). For this Twitter chat, we’ll focus on 4 of these attributes, and ask participants to share how they exemplify these attributes as information providers. We’ll also be joined by SLA President Kate Arnold (@KatefromUK), who had a direct role in developing this report with Financial Times and SLA staff.

  1. (first 15 minutes) Communicating Your Value – how do you overcome the difficulty in demonstrating the value of your information services to the business? How do you constantly “get closer to the action”?

    From the report: “Network! Don’t just sit in a library waiting for requests to come to you. You should actively seek out opportunities to make a contribution to projects and initiatives, and constantly be listening for leads”

    How do you actively seek out opportunities and leads to contribute to new projects? What are examples some examples of doing this?

  2. (second 15 minutes) Understanding the DriversThis can easily read “Understanding the strategy,” or “Understanding the preferences.” How do you gain an understanding of the overall strategy of your organization, and use that understanding to proactively contribute? How do you capture user preferences on an ongoing basis, and cater your services to those preferences?

    From the report: “Beyond understanding the business, information professionals are increasingly involving themselves directly within core teams.”

    How do you move away from the transaction-oriented way of providing service and begin adding value to the entire life cycle of a project?

  3. (third 15 minutes): Managing the ProcessHow do you develop a project management approach to delivering your services and projects? How do you manage the complexity of data at your disposal, along with the internal and external resources? How do you encourage self-service and establish multiple access points to your services?

    From the report: “In the longer term, information professionals should be looking for deeper transformations: initiatives that reduce the burden of stretched resources, instead of simply providing coping mechanisms.”

  4. (final 15 minutes): Providing Decision-Ready Information – How do you ensure the utmost relevancy of your information? How do you not only provide the information needed, but seek opportunities to influence the decision yourself? What tools do you use to provide bite-size, easy-to-digest chunks and visuals?

    From the report: “Stop providing the world to people,” says Catalyst’s Jan Combopiano. “Provide them the path instead. You can’t cover every base. Use your judgment and point them in the right direction.”

Can’t join us live on Twitter? Check the SLA Blog’s #SLAtalk category for the recap which will be posted following the session.

New to the #SLAtalk Twitter chat series? Check out How to #SLAtalk, which includes 10 helpful tips, as well as a Powtoon created by SLA members Emma Davidson and Dennie Heye.

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