A fifth of employees store corporate files on memory sticks

TOWER Software survey reveals that 49% of employees store work-related files in multiple locations posing serious security threats and exposure as well as compliance and information management issues

Some 55% of employees store work-related files such as emails, files and documents in locations other than a shared computer network, according to a new survey by enterprise content management company, TOWER Software. Conducted by independent research organisation, Dynamic Markets, the report, Document Mayhem in the UK and Republic of Ireland has revealed that 49% of PC users store these files in multiple locations, with a fifth (21%) using a memory stick.

14% of employees questioned admit to storing corporate material on the hard-drive of their laptop, and 9% even store work-related material on non-work owned personal devices.  8% use portable hard drives for work file storage, and 7% use mobile devices such as PDAs and smart phones for keeping hold of emails, files and documents.

Paul Brenchley, Vice President for TOWER Software in EMEA explains, Worryingly, 1% are unsure which of these locations theyve stored work-related files in! Overall, employees at middle manager level seem to be worse at storing computer files in such places (62%), compared to administration staff (43%). Despite the meteoric rise in mobile working and popularity of mobile devices, Im surprised that these figures are so high. It seems that warnings about corporate security, compliance and information control simply arent registering with many employees. The use of memory sticks for example, will leave many organisations in breach of their security contracts that forbid them in corporate buildings - or any other location with a corporate IP address. 

Fines and security threats such as those related to data protection and sensitive business and personal information continue to make regular news headlines. However, what also concerns me is the effect that poor information management practice can have day-to-day. Some consequences go beyond failing regulatory compliance, frustrating co-workers, losing customers and bad publicity. In some organisations, getting the right information to the right people at the right time is absolutely critical.

For example, local authorities such as Tower Hamlets Borough Council use EDRM to manage electronic social care records (ESCR). By having all relevant data available, prompt action and informed decisions can be taken to ensure the appropriate care of an individual or case.  The need to securely share information with colleagues and other government bodies such as, health, education, housing, criminal justice, private and voluntary establishments is essential.  


About TOWER Software

TOWER Software is a global leader in the successful delivery and implementation of industrial strength Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solutions, delivering proven productivity enhancements and compliance policy management to our customers while helping them be prepared for e-discovery. Working closely with a range of customers across the globe to address their enterprise information management needs, TOWER Software has incorporated 22 years of real business experience into TRIM Context, its award-winning product. Extensive business rules have been assimilated into TRIM Context to create a configurable, out-of-the-box solution which enables organizations to achieve best-practice information management across the enterprise, while reducing implementation risk.

TOWER Software, a privately held company, was founded in 1985 with the goal of addressing the enterprise information management needs of both public sector and private industry organizations with high accountability to regulatory authorities.

About the Research

Document Mayhem in the UK and Republic of Ireland details quantitative research conducted by independent market research company, Dynamic Markets on behalf of TOWER Software. The sample covers an equal split of public and private sector organisations, with senior managers and general employees in organisations in the UK and Republic of Ireland (ROI). In the UK, 200 interviews were collected with organisations with 250 or more employees, and in the ROI 100 interviews were collected with organisations with 50 or more employees. The smaller sample size and organisation in the ROI is designed to mimic the smaller universe and size of organisations located there, compared to the UK. All 300 respondents confirmed that the majority of employees at their organisation use a PC in their job. Respondents covered a wide variety of business functions, including sales, marketing, HR, finance, customer services, operations and purchasing and included senior management level executives. 

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