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Dec 13 / Erica Wilson

President Issues Memorandum on Records Management

 By Erica Wilson, Government Information Analyst

Photo courtesy of On Being

On November 28, President Barack Obama released a presidential memorandum for the heads of executive departments and agencies on the subject of managing government records.  In the national directive, the President writes about what many in the field know and try to impart on others: when records are managed properly, it improves efficiency, ensures public access, reduces administrative redundancies, and saves money.  He also challenges those who work with records management to come up with ways to update policies and procedures for the digital age.  Obama emphasizes the importance of open government and making RM programs a priority to ensure transparency and accountability in government.

One thing that contributes to a well-run records management program is support from management.  A Records Management Officer can organize an inventory, make a file plan, oversee records disposition, and create a training module, but without reinforcement of policies and procedures from upper management, it may be hard to convince others that records management is necessary and a part of their jobs.  By issuing this directive, President Obama has shown encouragement and support for those working in the records management field to continue developing programs.

2 Comments

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  1. Roger Nichols / Dec 14 2011

    So, since our county is in compliance with TSLAC does the memorandum
    from President Obama impact us in any way?

  2. Erica Wilson / Dec 14 2011

    Good question, Roger! Since the memorandum was issued to improve records management at the federal level, your county will not be affected, as you are obligated to follow the state laws regarding records management. However, we felt that the memorandum was noteworthy because many times what happens in federal government will trickle down to the local level, so leaders at state and local levels may follow suit.

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