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Five New Year's Resolutions for Records Managers

It is almost 2022, and we thought it would be fun to create a list of new year’s resolutions for records managers to consider. Here we go:

  • Ensure that your records management practice is on leadership’s radar- What are next year’s objectives and goals of your organization, and how can you support them with records management? Is your organization looking to modernize? What about compliance? Better manage costs? Increase efficiency? Fantastic, all of these can be supported by practicing a mature level of information governance. Show them how records management with Laserfiche helps get them to that goal.

  • Cement your relationships within IT- I’ve been around long enough to remember the days when IT and records managers had similar goals but used a completely different language and approach. Nien-Ling Wacker used to give a presentation called, “Records Managers are from Venus, and IT people are from Mars.” Happily, communication is no longer a problem between roles. Depending on the organization, some RMs report to the CIO. If this isn’t the case for you, perhaps you sense a lack of appreciation from IT leadership. Know this, the archives and records management system is a significant and essential long-term data source. The unstructured data found in records is an invaluable data source for analysis. The data can drive processes and increase efficiencies depending on how records are created and captured. IT should also consider records at risk for cybercrime. Which reminds me, depending on where you are located and what sector you are in–you may be required to store your permanent records in a Trusted System, which we can help you with.

  • Understand users’ work on the business side- When developing a records management framework, sometimes the organization’s business side pushes back. How do you get them on your side? Listen to them. It will inform your information governance. Understanding how users interact with records or create the documents that eventually become records is critical. It’s also an opportunity to consider how automation can enhance information capture, ensure that templates and metadata are accurate and that workers are efficient.

  • Check-in on your DR (disaster recovery) plan- Here’s another opportunity to work closely with IT. From the National Archives, “The records officer plays a crucial role in providing guidance and assistance in inventorying records and determining appropriate maintenance practices for copies of vital records. The cooperation of agency program managers is important throughout the life cycle of vital records. Based on the contingency planning analysis and identification of both emergency-operating records and those needed to protect legal and financial rights, program managers must determine which records within their physical or legal custody are vital. Program managers, in consultation with the records management office, should then take steps to ensure that copies of those vital records are properly managed throughout their life, as they are updated, stored, and cycled. In addition, original vital records must be properly maintained until their authorized disposition.” Your plan should be revisited yearly.

  • Check-in w/ your Laserfiche Partner to brainstorm- If you’ve got VIP support, see CPS about a system check. Essentially, it is an audit of your Laserfiche system. We’ll show you user errors and make suggestions. We can automate the capture of records and their path through their final disposition cycle. This will ensure accuracy and compliance with government mandates and internal retentions. We’d also love to chat about putting a Trusted System into place to protect your permanent records.

May you have a happy, prosperous, and productive new year!



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