Electronic Records Management Report Offers Solution for Taming the Electronic Office

Sept. 3, 1998
Contact: Ben Meyers
(518) 442-3892

Albany, NY - Today, most organizations increasingly manage work, and make decisions on the basis of electronic information. Without question, organizations need electronic records that are reliable and authentic; usable for multiple purposes, and accessible over time for both business and secondary uses. However, with the shift from paper to digital information, many organizations find that their current electronic records are not sufficient to support their business needs or are in danger of losing access to records.

A recent report, Models for Action: Developing Practical Approaches to Electronic Records Management and Preservation, published by the Center for Technology in Government at the University at Albany, addresses many electronic records management concerns. The report describes several practical tools that will aid managers in both the public and private sector as well as information technologists, records managers, archivists, and students of business and public administration to support their electronic records management needs. The report shows generalizable tools that incorporate essential electronic records requirements into the design of new information systems. It also illustrates two practical tools that seek to bridge the gap between records management theory and practice by linking an organization's business objectives to its records management processes.

"The report findings were generated through a two-year applied research project, conducted with the State Archives, and funded in large part by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). The project, carried out with the NYS Adirondack Park Agency, investigated the tools needed for identifying and implementing electronic recordkeeping requirements into the normal course of improving business processes and designing new information systems. The project also generated a prototype application that is a network-based integrated document management and workflow system, capable of supporting and archiving a fully electronic record. 

The mission of the Center for Technology in Government at the University at Albany is to foster public sector innovation, enhance capability, generate public value, and support good governance. We carry out this mission through applied research, knowledge sharing, and collaboration at the intersection of policy, management, and technology. 

The State Archives in the State Education Department, has a broad mandate to provide guidance and services to help government better manage their records, to administer the official State Archives, to regulate the disposal and selective preservation of state and local government records, and to support activities that strengthen historical records programs and encourage educational uses of historical records throughout New York State.