Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Record keeping

One of my first tasks in this new job has been to get my head around our records management systems and processes. The National Archives of Australia (NAA) has created an online assessment tool called Check-up and all government agencies have to submit their assessment by 30th September.

This really just involved talking to as many people as possible about how and when they use the systems and also about associated topics. The assessment asks about audits, business continuity plans, cabinet documents and other corporate governance areas. It was a good introduction to the agency as I learnt a lot while asking these questions.

Record keeping or records management (RM) has always been one of those neglected areas in government organisations from what I have seen. Coming from a law firm who had implemented a Document Management System attached to Outlook years ago, I was a bit amazed at how records were managed in the public sector. Obviously lawyers have different drivers for innovation (litigation, discovery, efficiency and cost savings). Now the NAA along with support from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC), Prime Minister and Cabinet (DPMC) and the Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) have introduced whole of government reforms and made this a function to notice (and resource)!

So our Check-up assessment is complete and I have been able to create a list of areas and tasks that my agency will need to look at over the coming year to ensure we have made some improvements by the next assessment date. This will help me to plan the resources I need and to prioritise what is the most important and realistic for our agency.

Has anyone else been involved in this process for their agency?

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