Integration Planning and Requirements

The success of information sharing initiatives usually depends on multiple independent partners, each with their own mission and capabilities, creating a shared vision for their common enterprise. They must build this shared vision on the basis of well understood, clearly documented requirements. It is the partners' consensus around these requirements that provides a stable foundation for design, implementation, and deployment of information sharing solutions. Establishing this consensus is a key step in the planning of any information sharing initiative.

SEARCH has long been a leader in consensus-based modeling of information exchange requirements, as part of strategy and planning for information sharing. The Justice Information Exchange Model (JIEM®) is a tool that SEARCH developed, through funding from the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance, that allows users to follow a simple but powerful methodology, supported by an intuitive software tool, and guided by reference models that represent best practices from across the country.

The result of applying the JIEM® methodology is a set of documents that lay out a plan for information sharing-which agencies share information, at what points in the business process, for what reason, and under what conditions. Each exchange identified in JIEM® can contain additional information, such as criticality and priority, which will assist in project planning; JIEM® exchanges can also capture privacy and security policy elements. JIEM® also integrates with the Global Reference Architecture (GRA), allowing practitioners to adopt a service-oriented approach to information exchange, and also integrates with the National Information Exchange Model (NIEM) by providing the "jumping off point" for developing NIEM exchange specifications.