What is Records Management?
Records Management (also known as records and information management, or RIM) is a system that is utilized to manage paper or electronic records. It is predominantly from the flash they’re created or received, through to when they’re used, stored, and disposed of.
As a matter of fact, records comprise information you’ve created or received. They should be preserved as evidence of business transactions or to comply with the law. It could be anything from meeting minutes and correspondence to financial records or even legal contracts.
The records can be in digital or paper format, and they need to be kept for a certain amount of time subsequently. A document predominantly turns into a record once all the work on it is completed. Documents tend to change frequently, on the contrary records should not change as they are a record of past happenings.
A records retention schedule throws light on the time frame- how long you should keep records before destroying them.
The impetus of records management is to ensure that you maintain and have access to records that can be retrieved for business processes, legal requirements, or audits.
The 10 gilt-edged records management best practices are discussed below
1. Define- Business Needs & Goals:
It is important for organizations to bring out a clear understanding of the necessity for records management.
It provides a schema for the creation, destruction, and disposition of records. Through this process, organizations authenticate that appropriate and legal records are created. It also checks whether they are retained based on the stipulations outlined in their maintenance schedules. In addition to that, the documents are destroyed when they are no longer in need. As a healthy document management practice, it should be checked whether the records are disposed of properly to safeguard the individual’s privacy.
2. Establish- A process for Identifying & Documenting Records:
The process of identifying and documenting records is deemed the crucial step in the records management process. The types of records that need to be included are shilly-shally based on the type of archive. Further, records should be included if they are effectuated as evidence of an event. The records management system is a complex system, which is inclusive of multiple steps and processes.
3 . Reviewing and Updating Policies and Procedures:
It is vital to scrutinize and update records management solutions in order to maintain the records’ integrity.
4. Effectuating a Records Maintenance Schedule:
In order to circumvent the potential costs and risks associated with the loss of records, a retention schedule should be invoked.
5. Identifying- Records Management Team:
Records Management Team identification is a primary success factor in any business. In general, the team is tasked with the responsibility of keeping track of records. In addition, it also ensures that they are stored resolutely until they are no longer needed.
6. Setting up an Easy Workflow:
To ensure that all data is captured and stored in the most relevant or appropriate format, it’s predominant to set up a records management workflow.
7. Establishing a Sturdy location for Records Storage:
Your records must always be hoarded securely in a safe location that is not available or within the reach to unauthorized people. Consider the following when laying hands on a location:
- Offsite storage accessibility only by authorized personnel with the pertinent clearance level or credentials.
- Secure facility with manifold protection layers
- A business that handles electronic information with document control software.
8. Record, Track, and Monitor Records:
Records are perpetually moving in and out of storage, as well as between colleagues and departments. Without any comprehensive categorization and tracking system in place, there is high possibility of files sliding through the channels. As a result, it can also vanish.
9. Validating that all Employees have Access to Updated Policies:
For the most part, keeping employees informed about the new policies and procedures is an important and also an uphill task for any organization. Since the policies vary from one organization to the next, it is up to the management to avouch that all the employees have rightful access to the organization’s updated policies.
10.Train Employees on Document Management:
Document Management can always be a time-consuming task for most managers. It is because there is a truckload of processes that have to be followed and it’s not always palpable to remember them all. Moreover, in order to alleviate the burden on your managers, it is advisable to create an Employee Guide in terms of Document Management.
Why Do You Need Best Practices For Record Management?
Record Management is a key trait of any organization. It is preeminent to have the best practices in place to vouch that records are not at a loss.
The phenomenal reason why companies demand best practices for record management is to ensure that they law compliant. The second reason is to substantiate that there is a records backup in case something emanates to their data. The third reason is to sew up that they are not losing any vital information in the process of records digitization.
A good records management plan or a proper file management system is crucial for any sort of organization to persist with a strong and healthy culture