What is the importance of Information Exchange Package Documentation (IEPD)?

Information Exchange Package Documentation (IEPD) is necessary to define the data that is to be exchanged (and the structure of that data) for a particular business purpose, thereby providing interoperability at the Information Exchange Package level.

The GJXDM and NIEM provide a set of defined data and an object structure for that data. However, they do not define sets of data for particular business information exchanges. Without the IEPD, there would be no agreement on which GJXDM or NIEM properties (and extended properties) are used or how they are structured within the IEP. Given the same set of business data requirements, each implementing organization would likely come up with a different IEP to represent that same set of business data. It would be difficult for organizations receiving an IEP to understand it, since the organization wouldn’t necessarily know which properties or what structure to expect.

Even if the IEP from a particular sending organization could be interpreted, it would be expensive for organizations to handle the IEP variations from the different senders. By developing and reaching agreement on the IEPD for an information exchange within a particular justice enterprise, participants can send an IEP that can be understood by those receiving the IEP. Developing Reference Information Exchange Package Documentation further reduces the arbitrary variations in IEPD and the corresponding effort to implement multiple IEPD instances for a similar business purpose.