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Best Practice Standards in 
Electronic Record Keeping 
Presented by 
Kerry Gordon, Director 
Recordkeeping Innovation P L
Typical records framework 
• low volumes of hardcopy mail 
• high and increasing volumes of electronic 
messages 
• electr...
Typical framework 
• Poor folder naming structures - by business 
unit, persons name 
• disposal is ad hoc 
• huge quantit...
Risks 
• unauthorised access - loss of intellectual 
property, loss and corruption of data 
• loss after a disaster 
• los...
Issues 
• retrieval is difficult 
• lack of business continuity 
• costs of redoing work, relearning 
• exposure to fraud,...
Why are records important ? 
• evidence of business 
• protect the assets of the business 
• provide accountability 
• nee...
What’s new? 
• New technology transforming 
communication 
• increased mobility 
• enormous increase in volume and respons...
Where are we? 
• Few organisations control all their 
electronic information 
• less resources to manage information 
• co...
Formal or informal records 
• Most companies have protocols for 
managing hardcopy records 
• expectation that electronic ...
Standards development 
• AS 4390 and ISO 15489 
• Australia has world’s first standard 
• standards in government recordke...
Role of the Standards 
• 3 types of standards 
– interoperability standards eg construction 
materials 
– professional sta...
What is a record? 
Records are 
“information created, received, and 
maintained as evidence and information by 
an organis...
Who is responsible? 
• everyone in the company 
• ‘expert’ users 
• Managers 
• Records/knowledge managers 
• Senior manag...
Recordkeeping requirements 
‘Organisations should be aware of their 
legislative and regulatory environment’ 
• company se...
Record standards include: 
• compliant 
• complete 
• meaningful 
• comprehensive 
• accurate 
• authentic 
• inviolate
International standard (2) 
• Recordkeeping controls 
– registration 
– classification 
– indexing 
– tracking 
– appraisa...
Records controls 
• classification schemes 
• indexing - software 
• disposal 
• access and security
Where to from here? 
• What is the problem? 
• How serious is the commitment? 
• What are the objectives? 
• Can we break ...
Implementation strategies 
• Identify recordkeeping requirements 
• analyse and document the business processes 
• assess ...
Risk assessment 
• vital records identified 
• disaster recovery plan 
• document controls for key items 
• fraud controls...
Project planning 
• Strategic planning for records - objectives, 
audience, performance measures, budget 
• management sup...
Help is available 
• Government records agencies 
• training 
• consultants - RMAA product register 
• publications 
• web...
Conclusion 
• Standards provide best practice framework 
• not mandatory 
• implementation needs strong management 
suppor...
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Electronic recordkeeping

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Electronic recordkeeping

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Electronic recordkeeping

  1. 1. Best Practice Standards in Electronic Record Keeping Presented by Kerry Gordon, Director Recordkeeping Innovation P L
  2. 2. Typical records framework • low volumes of hardcopy mail • high and increasing volumes of electronic messages • electronic documents storage is not organised – email applications – desktop applications - shared folders – database records
  3. 3. Typical framework • Poor folder naming structures - by business unit, persons name • disposal is ad hoc • huge quantities of duplication • lack of security, access control • version control, templates • not all records are copied to paperfiles
  4. 4. Risks • unauthorised access - loss of intellectual property, loss and corruption of data • loss after a disaster • loss of corporate knowledge when staff leave • increased risks of litigation, potential losses • unable to satisfy regulators
  5. 5. Issues • retrieval is difficult • lack of business continuity • costs of redoing work, relearning • exposure to fraud, corruption, poor governance, lack of accountability • poor public image • directors sued for negligence • additional storage costs
  6. 6. Why are records important ? • evidence of business • protect the assets of the business • provide accountability • needed in court, by regulators • provide valuable precedence, corporate knowledge • preserve the history of events
  7. 7. What’s new? • New technology transforming communication • increased mobility • enormous increase in volume and response time • flatter management structures and decentralised organisations
  8. 8. Where are we? • Few organisations control all their electronic information • less resources to manage information • corporate failures show key role of records - Enron, Arthur Andersen, One.tel, HIH, British & American Tobacco • electronic information is more fragile and easily lost, or inaccessible
  9. 9. Formal or informal records • Most companies have protocols for managing hardcopy records • expectation that electronic records are simply a convenient copy • breakdown in formal structure leads to informal records • most organisations do not know what they’ve got
  10. 10. Standards development • AS 4390 and ISO 15489 • Australia has world’s first standard • standards in government recordkeeping - storage, electronic records • compliance requirements in government • results of audits
  11. 11. Role of the Standards • 3 types of standards – interoperability standards eg construction materials – professional standards - competencies eg accountants certification, doctors accreditation – best practice standards eg ISO 9000 for quality systems, food industry codes of conduct • Aim: incentive, not mandatory, not audited
  12. 12. What is a record? Records are “information created, received, and maintained as evidence and information by an organisation or person, in the pursuance of legal obligations or in the transaction of business.” AS ISO 15489.1
  13. 13. Who is responsible? • everyone in the company • ‘expert’ users • Managers • Records/knowledge managers • Senior management • the organisation
  14. 14. Recordkeeping requirements ‘Organisations should be aware of their legislative and regulatory environment’ • company secretary and legal advisors role – legislation – regulators – industry codes and practices – licenses and permits
  15. 15. Record standards include: • compliant • complete • meaningful • comprehensive • accurate • authentic • inviolate
  16. 16. International standard (2) • Recordkeeping controls – registration – classification – indexing – tracking – appraisal and disposal • Should apply to records in any format
  17. 17. Records controls • classification schemes • indexing - software • disposal • access and security
  18. 18. Where to from here? • What is the problem? • How serious is the commitment? • What are the objectives? • Can we break down the problem? • What will it cost? • Who will do the work?
  19. 19. Implementation strategies • Identify recordkeeping requirements • analyse and document the business processes • assess and locate existing systems (IT audit) • design the system - software, controls • develop policies and procedures • implement • review and adjust
  20. 20. Risk assessment • vital records identified • disaster recovery plan • document controls for key items • fraud controls - operational procedures are essential • corporate standards • system design to make compliance easy
  21. 21. Project planning • Strategic planning for records - objectives, audience, performance measures, budget • management support • aim for systematic control over all records in any format • need for system procedures • staff training
  22. 22. Help is available • Government records agencies • training • consultants - RMAA product register • publications • websites, listservs • professional associations
  23. 23. Conclusion • Standards provide best practice framework • not mandatory • implementation needs strong management support, software and good design • responsibilities must be allocated • documented policies and procedures are important • conversion may be done gradually

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