A recent article from ARMA highlights the new initiatives rolled out by the Obama administration as part of its third Open Government National Action Plan. This is part of the of the United State's membership in the Open Government Partnership which has grown to 66 countries and whose objective is stated "Member countries and their civil society partners are all working to increase public integrity, enhance public access to information, improve management of public resources, and give the public a more active voice in government processes.” They also hold a summit every two years where countries outline commitments to advance open #government.
Often when we talk about records management, it is mainly around electronic documents. However, even in today's highly digital environment, governance of your physical and electronic records together or "unified records management" is critical to ensure you are getting a complete picture of your organization's information governance strategy. Unified records management does present several challenges that need to be addressed.
A recent article from Software Advice reviews the results of their survey of U.S. office workers in which they asked about how they use paper and digital documents during a variety of workplace tasks. There were several interesting key findings:
If your organization is like ours, you likely have information that needs to be managed across multiple systems. Managing records can be a complex process, especially across all of these systems.
We all know that records management is critical for keeping your business running smoothly and efficiently. One underrated aspect however, is protecting yourself from fraudulent lawsuits. By creating a proactive strategy, you set your company up to be prepared for any issues related to records and don't have to rely on a reactive search and seek of miscellaneous emails or files. As anyone who has been through that process knows, it can be like finding the figurative needle in the haystack.
I am not here to tell you to leave all of your information on (file shares in) file servers, however we have learned after working with many customers needing Records and Information Management solutions that sometimes it’s just better to leave your files in place. At least for a while. Placing record retention policies on files (on your file servers) is very feasible if you stay within reasonable bounds.
One of the most important principles in record keeping is classifying information into its appropriate bucket so that it can be properly managed and disposed of. Doing this means you need to create a solid file plan which requires that you understand the two types of record categories that may exist.
#1 - Know where your information resides
When I first started learning about leadership I read a lot of John Maxwell books and I always remember him talking about what he calls “The Law of Process”. Phase 1 of this law was “I Don’t Know What I Don’t Know.” It’s the same way with information, if you don’t know where it is, how would you ever expect to manage it?
In August of 2012, the National Archives issued a directive to carry out a presidential directive to overhaul the records management policies of federal agencies. NARA (National Archive and Records Administration) issued goal A3.1 of the Presidential Records Management Directive (PRMD) and has published information about how to get involved.