John Mancini, president of the Association of Information and Image Management (AIIM), and Sue Trombley from Iron Mountain recently did a webinar entitled, “What does the Obama Administration Records Management Directive Tell Us?” and you can listen watch it here. The presentation centered on, “A road map to becoming more strategic with electronic records: not just for federal agencies, but any organization.” The road map included six points and those are as follows:

  1. Educate the organization on the basic process for capturing records
  2. Conduct an information and record inventory
  3. Create a structure for effective governance
  4. Understand the unique challenges of social and email content
  5. Decide on a strategy for backfile paper conversion
  6. Develop a communication, training and change management plan

One of the longest parts of the presentation, but most valuable was the section on governance. Sue spent time talking about the advantages of big bucket retention scheduling and has a lot of great information for those on the fence and favor small buckets. Small buckets serve the purpose of making it easier to find information, but with proper metadata and search engines that makes access and retrievability moot points for big bucket users. Also, small buckets are so granular that depending on the size of the project implementation can be near impossible. Although you gain greater accuracy in small buckets you lose achievability. Small buckets can definitely be a hindrance to the end user who do not want to wade through countless series. Small buckets had a place in paper records, but the volume of records being created with electronic records makes sense for big bucket retention scheduling.

Another great point was made on the importance of communication, training and change management. Not giving enough attention to this area is typically the reason why many governance projects fail.

Something that can’t be reiterated enough and Sue was certain to mention this is that when it comes to managing email do not manage it according to format and give email its own records series, but instead email should be managed and retained based on the content it contains.

This webinar is definitely worth the hour that it takes to listen to as it contains tons of great content.