Bridging the Record Management Skill Gap

Physical recordkeeping was established even before humans evolved to walk. Like us, our ancestors were like bowerbirds; collecting and keeping things that were precious to them. Formality came in with the written word and the collation of wisdom in documents of clay and papyrus. Documents replaced talk as the accepted and consistent method of retaining and sharing important information. As the volume of information grew the need to record where it was located for findability was developed, and thus recordkeeping was officially born. The premise on which recordkeeping was born and promulgated through the discovery of more effective writing materials was simple. Write down where the physical object is located. Make sure you write down sufficient information to enable identification of that unique object. Giving it a unique number and adding that to the document eliminates error. Today that premise has evolved into electronic document […]

Re-image Your Records Management Team

Every industry and job role has an image.  The movie industry is associated with glamour and beauty.  The racing car industry is adrenalin charged and masculine.  Teachers are dedicated and caring.  And recordkeepers are … Generally the description of recordkeepers is detailed and conservative, or similar terms similarly associated with being worthy, but dull.  Not the type of description that conjures in the minds of people an exciting or inviting image to be associated with.  The records and information industry is not alone in having a less than attractive image; for instance IT and engineering people bear the burden of being described as obsessive and uncommunicative. Records managers and officers share a laugh about the industry image, such as “I’m wearing my beige recordkeeping cardigan of shame”.  Or “I have to be obsessive about order; I’m a recordkeeper”.  It’s all good for a laugh amongst […]

Seven Deadly Estimating Sins of Records Management

Record and Information Managers and Records Officers are constantly implementing positive initiatives that drive improved records management. It’s exciting to see the proliferation and diversity of good ideas within the records industry. The majority of initiatives don’t require a financial budget, official project status or external contractors, so Records Managers have the authority to implement these initiatives without the burden that can be created by red tape. In theory there is nothing to slow positive forward progress and rapid achievement of results. Yet at least 50% of good initiative become a burden to the originator. Some come to a grinding halt, and others become a feat of endurance to reach conclusion. Such initiatives also become stressful and build negativity within your team. In the longer term you become jaded about “good ideas”; both your own and those of other team members, and in the future […]

Developing Staff – What’s Your Problem?

Are you providing regular training sessions in a particular topic, but finding actual skill development or improvement in work performance is poor? It’s a very common, and frustrating, scenario. Frequently we’re asked to develop an improved training course, with improved content, for organisation’s experiencing this situation. But improved content alone, whilst helping, frequently will not improve the learning outcome. The learning outcome from training is the degree to which individuals successfully apply what they have been taught back in their workplace; one week, one month or one year post training. Learning outcomes can be measured. For example help desk support calls and usage statistics inform us on the learning outcomes of technical training. Customer satisfaction or achievement of quality standards are soft skill measures. The rate at which people are re-trained is also an excellent measure. Improved content is only one piece of the learning […]

Writing the Business Case for eLearning – HP TRIM 7 or HP RM8

The majority of records managers work in a public office and thus a formal business case must be approved before public money can be allocated. At Linked Training we are frequently asked to provide information to records teams putting together a business case for HP  TRIM (and now also Records Manager 8 – RM8) eLearning. Every organisation will have a different reason and required outcome for selecting eLearning as part of their HP TRIM / RM8 delivery package so I’ve packaged our general advice into this article, and you can add your organisations specific situation and detail to support your case. The exact structure of a business case will vary organisation by organisation and it’s important to be aware of any templates or structures preferred in your organisation. There are both reactive and proactive situations on which a HP TRIM eLearning business case is built. […]

The New World of RM8

The question of “What is new for the End User?” is faced by every organisation upgrading from one version of software to another. Major, and sometimes even minor, changes in the interface, the functionality and the features require training in some form for the end users to seamlessly transition. Where there is little change or competent users this may be in the form of informative presentations and flyers. For a different audience or extensive change more formal training may be required. Regardless, there will be a need to prepare resources, allocate training time and set aside the budget for this. With Record Manager 8 (RM8) released by HP as the latest version of the TRIM EDRMS many records units will be trying to decide if they should upgrade to TRIM 7 or RM8. TRIM 7 is now well established, and although for TRIM Administrators and […]

Records Management: Back to the Future

Records and Information Managers are assailed with big picture thinking at present. Faced with an avalanche of information looming from the future, planning is currently consumed and frequently overwhelmed with making decisions on managing big data. Cloud computing, enterprise search and data based decision making are the themes of workshops, conferences and papers. The need to research, consult and set direction for the big picture is self-evident. Past experience informs us that failure to forward think leads to poor outcomes. Organisations which failed to read the future litter the landscape. Think Kodak and digital photography, and IBM’s failure to change to a business model that could compete in the changing landscape of PC production. However, the overwhelming evidence is that most Records and Information Management (RIM) teams are struggling to manage the current requirements and needs of recordkeeping; just ensuring all records are captured in […]

Creating a Seat for Records Managers at the Executive Table

On a day to day basis work can be incredibly frustrating. Frequently it feels as though our best intentions and actions are being thwarted at every turn. We need assistance from other people or business units to successfully complete our work, but everyone else is so focused on what they are doing they offer very little support. And NO-ONE understands the importance of the work we do. Yet, at whatever level we sit in our organisation around us there are colleagues who seem to operate free of this frustration. They rely on engagement with other business units too, but they seem to have no problem achieving it. People deliver them the information they need, and happily agree or acquiesce to their requests. Sure, some of them have sunny personalities, but for the main they are of a fairly standard balance temperament, and their success is […]

Unlocking the Value of Information

The world is transforming. Businesses and governments capture more and more of our lives and our interactions with them in digital format. The explosion of digital information associated with this transformation is still in its’ formative years. A 2012 study (Gantz , John; Reinsel , David ;, 2012) completed by IDC and sponsored by EMC, estimated that from 2005 to 2020 the amount of digital data will grow by a factor of 300 to 40,000 exabytes . Business and government agencies have liability for about 80% of that data. It is critical to establish information governance structures that prioritise information management within organisations whilst we are in the infancy stage and prevent a future of loss of critical information. The Information Value Chain Knowledge of the information value chain establishes a basis for understanding why the information we hold is important, even when it may […]

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