Auto-classification as a Business Process
I don’t talk much about auto-classification although it’s a key component in our technology. Auto-classification, or sometimes termed categorization helps achieve information governance. Content based classification, which is what we do, weights are given to particular subjects in a document that determines the class to which the document is assigned. This is based on rules which provide the instructions on what verbiage and descriptors are important and how they should be weighted.
Request oriented classification (sometimes just called indexing) is classification where users determine how the document is classified. This can be useful to specific functional groups but policy must also be applied to ensure the content is consistently and accurately classified.
Categorization, although the terms now are often intertwined, documents are grouped into categories based on their similar properties. The result is that the document is recognized, differentiated, and understood. Usually the purpose is to group similar content for a specific purpose.
Classification and categorization, to different degrees, is particularly useful in records management and data security type applications where predictable metadata or patterns can be used to aid in the content lifecycle for retention, disposition, and security of privacy assets. For example, one SharePoint client has 72K site collections, and 5,300 retention codes. Using auto-classification they automatically identify documents of record as well as unknown privacy data violations and route to the appropriate repository. They have eliminated all manual tagging of content. Obviously, in this scenario, they had a very strong business case and have achieved their objectives. In this usage scenario there were direct and quantifiable business benefits that were achieved quite rapidly.
I am curious if any readers use any type of classification technology? I would assume it is typically request based classification. Although I could be wrong – wouldn’t be the first time. I am interested in any feedback on classification in general and your experiences.