Records management (RM), also known as the records and information management or RIM, is the professional practice of managing the records of an organisation throughout their life cycle, from the time they are created to their eventual disposal. This includes identifying, classifying, storing, securing, retrieving, tracking and destroying or permanently preserving records.
The purpose of records management is part of an organisation’s broader function of Governance, Risk, and Compliance and is primarily concerned with the managing the evidence of an organisation’s activities as well as the reduction or mitigation of risk associated with it.
The definition of ‘document’ and ‘record’: in records management it is important to be clear about the difference between a document and a record.
A document is any piece of written information in any form, produced or received by an organisation or person. It can include databases, website, email messages, word processor and spreadsheet files, letters, and memos. Some of these documents will be ephemeral or of very short-term value and should never end up in a records management system (such as invitations to lunch).
Some documents will need to be kept as evidence of business transactions, routine activities or as a result of legal obligations, such as policy documents. These should be placed into an official filing system and at this point, they become official records. In other words, all records start off as documents, but not all documents will ultimately become records.
ERA has an excellent record of achieving very high levels of savings with traditional off-site storage (boxes, files, deeds, wills, architectural drawings, etc.), scanning, digitising and secure shredding. They also assist with the management of electronic data.
At ERA we are also concerned with broader issues than the price you pay for the storage, management and disposition of your business records. We recognise that our clients have responsibilities for information security, data protection, business continuity, risk management and compliance. There are a raft of statutory and industry specific regulations and our aim is to find solutions that can assist you in compliance with those obligations as well as save you money.