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Record Keeping – Major Challenges and Highlights

records keeping

The Public Record Office Victoria PROV has just undertaken a major report into their current record keeping practices of government agencies in Victoria. The report was created to highlight the record keeping challenges facing the public sector. The Victorian Government is currently producing more paperwork than they ever have before and the increasing amount of paper records requiring management is proving challenging. The (PROV) report looked into many of the challenges faced, below we have a look at six of the key findings.

Risk Management

Record managers in the public sector are responsible for managing records efficiently and are also responsible for managing the risk associated. Several agencies haven’t identified a disaster management plan and do not have appropriate risk management plans in place.

  • Studies by PROV show that only 20% of agencies manage Information Asset Registers.
  • Many agencies do not maintain Risk Registers.
  • The recordkeeping processes and agencies are entirely reactive.

Storage

Agencies’ ever-expanding paper records storage needs are costly and very time consuming when it comes to re-accessing them.

  • The latest PROV numbers suggest that approximately 800km of paper is currently stored, and that number is steadily rising.
  • Most of the time, agencies are storing physical records along with digital versions.
  • The volume of documents and data is growing rapidly and exponentially

Limited Resources

Record management can sound like a mundane task. However, most government agencies require a dedicated team to manage the huge number of records they create.

Most agencies lack the resources and the staff for professional records management and for transferring records to PROV.

End of Life Systems

A significant problem has materialised whereby certain public records can only be accessed utilising legacy systems. As an example, no management plan currently exists for accessing Lotus Notes content as the Lotus Notes system has since been retired.

When a record reaches its end of life, it’s essential to manage and protect the records access appropriately; to begin with, agencies are required to transfer a permanent record to PROV. In the absence of a well-designed programme for obtaining the record, agencies may be required to outsource the storage of records to APROSS-approved vendors.

Information and document sharing

Currently, the Victorian Government does not have appropriate measures in place for the sharing of critical information between departments. The prevention of access to critical information is jeopardising the safety of victims and stopping some government agencies delivering their core service properly.

Disposal Guidelines

PROV guidelines state that public records must be disposed of in the following situations:

  • When the document is no longer required for administrative use.
  • When the retention period has expired.

Appropriate disposal of public records helps minimise storage costs and ensures they remain available for the correct duration.

Records with a temporary retention value can either be destroyed or transferred to PROV or an APROSS-certified facility.

Any records not required for immediate access can be stored with a commercial storage company provided the storage company is an Approved Public Record Office Storage Supplier (APROSS). Any records stored must be retained in an APROSS-certified facility that complies with the PROV standards.

How Compu-Stor Can Help?

Compu-Stor offers a professional, reliable and secure solution to counter all these challenges. We are a PROV-compliant, APROSS-certified facility established over 32 years ago.

We provide end-to-end records management solutions to government and commercial agencies that improve productivity, compliance and efficiency.

Whether you are looking to store documents temporary, records awaiting sentencing (subject to approval by PROV) and records sentenced as permanent value, we offer a professional solution to meet your agency’s requirements.

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.