Friday, April 29, 2011

The Need for Records Management Training As Well As Telework Training

The Need for Records Management Training As Well As Telework Training

Just moments ago I attended a telework training session that was informative and well presented. I am encouraged by the energy behind the various telework initiatives and the recently passed Telework Law (H.R. 1722 The Telework Enhancement Act signed by President Obama in December 2010). As a strong advocate for telework I feel that it is the workforce for such a time as we are living in today, and in subsequent days many of the concerns and culture changes which may be causing some resistance to telework will be effectively addressed and productivity will not be affected but rather enhanced by the teleworker.

My purpose in writing this email is to request that in addition to telework mandatory training we also consider the need for mandatory records management training. Records management is everyone’s responsibility and as the workforce of today and workforce of the future becomes more and more mobile it is of great importance that we realize the importance placed upon records management as we interact with the agency records both within and outside the normal work place. The management of Agency records must be stressed along with other productive work related practices and I would encourage you to consider the following important essentials and benefits related to records management:

Importance of Records Management:

• Protects the legal, financial, and other rights of the government and its citizens
• Ensures continuity and consistency in carrying out business processes
• Records Agency progress, achievements and other metrics which provide accurate metrics for justification of various Agency mission and objectives
• Provides information required by Congress and other officials
• Documents Agency organization, structure and essential vital records
• Enables Agency to be compliant with required regulations

Risks imposed when Records Management is not practiced effectively

• Potential loss of Agency records
• Accidental deletion of electronic records
• Inability to locate essential records
• Failure to meet eDiscovery (the process of locating electronic documents when required for litigation) requirements
• Failure to meet Paperwork Elimination and Space Elimination Acts
• Failure to meet legal requirements
• Failure to exercise prudent business practices
• Inability to accurately and clearly demonstrate agency accomplishments

Telework and the importance of Records Management

• If teleworkers are not briefed in records management there is the possibility that electronic records would not be managed properly
• A failure to manage electronic records may result in accidental deletion, inappropriate exposure, accidental modification or tampering with Agency records
• The teleworker should be aware of the fact that records are being produced on various media and electronic devices and not just the pc or laptop, such as:
• The cell phone
• The smart phone
• The iPod, The iPad, etc
• Electronic Records may also be created and managed within various Web 2.0 apps such as:
• Wiki’s, Blogs, Facebook’s, You Tubes, Google Apps, Emails, etc.
• The cloud also poses very unique challenges to records management and the teleworker, for which the teleworker should be informed and trained

I have listed some considerations for the inclusion of a mandatory records management training session. This list is not exhaustive but I appreciate your feedback and look forward to your response.

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