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Records Management Training 101 Learning Objectives This training is designed to help you: Understand the importance of Records Management and why records are maintained Understand your RM responsibilities
Records Management Training 101 Learning Objectives This training is designed to help you: Understand the importance of Records Management and why records are maintained Understand your RM responsibilities Learn basic RM terms and definitions Learn how to identify a Record Learn about a Legal Hold Understand Records Schedules Locate additional resources 2 About NARA The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is responsible for ensuring proper Records Management in the Federal government. NARA: Provides rules, regulations, and guidance for the management of records in all media Appraises and schedules active records Stores inactive records Preserves and provides access to permanent records. In locations around the country, NARA stores more than 9 billion paper records; 7 million maps, charts, and drawings; 20 million photographs; 365,000 reels of film; 110,000 video tapes; and billions of machine-readable data sets. 3 What is Records Management? According to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), Records Management is: The planning, controlling, directing, organizing, training, promoting, and other managerial activities involved with respect to records creation, records maintenance and use, and records disposition in order to achieve adequate and proper documentation of the policies and transactions of the Federal government and effective and economical management of Agency operations. 36 CFR In simple terms, Records Management is the practice of maintaining and preserving records from creation until disposition. 4 Benefits of Records Management Records Management: Contributes to the smooth operation of Agency programs by making readily available the information needed for decision-making and operational readiness Helps deliver services in a consistent and equitable manner Facilitates the effective performance of program activities Protects the rights of citizens, businesses, and the Agency Provides continuity in the event of a disaster Protects records from inappropriate and unauthorized access Helps an Agency meet statutory and regulatory requirements Auditors Say U.S. Agencies Lose Track of Billions Papers Found During Fifth Search at Federal Facility: Failure Blamed on Storage Lapses 5 Roles & Responsibilities Employees and contractors must: Recognize records are government assets required by law and used to conduct Agency business Coordinate with Records Management Officers regarding all aspects of Records Management, including schedules and disposition Organize files in a manner that facilitates efficient and effective retrieval of information 6 Roles and Responsibilities Employees and contractors must NOT: Remove or destroy records from offices without authorization or an approved schedule Mix official records with personal information or non-record materials Employees and contractors are prohibited from destroying any unscheduled records. Unscheduled records are treated as PERMANENT until a NARA-approved retention schedule has been implemented. 7 Roles & Responsibilities Program Managers must: Perform reviews of RM activities and help ensure compliance with legal and regulatory requirements Identify the official office of record Specify if the data being created is a record Apply appropriate disposition instructions for files being created 8 Terms & Definitions 44 United States Code 3301 states: Records include all books, papers, maps, photographs, machine readable materials, s or other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received by an Agency of the United States government under Federal law or in connection with the transaction of public business and preserved or appropriate for preservation by that Agency or legitimate successor as evidence of the organization, functions, policies, or other activities of government or because of the informational value of data in them. 44 USC 3301 In simple terms, depending primarily on content and purpose, a record is information in any media created or received while fulfilling the duties of your position or conducting official business that documents Agency function, organization, and activities. 9 Terms & Definitions Permanent Records have historical or other value that warrants permanent preservation. Permanent Records: Are NEVER destroyed Are eventually transferred to the legal custody of NARA for preservation in the National Archives Require special care and handling 10 Terms & Definitions Some examples of permanent records include: Executive Correspondence of highlevel senior officials Directives and policy documents Official DOT reports, decisions, and press releases High-level committee files Operating Administration organizational charts and delegations of authority manuals 11 Terms & Definitions Temporary records have a finite retention period that is approved by NARA. Temporary records : Are destroyed/deleted after a NARAapproved records retention period Often require off-site storage when inactive May require a longer retention period than the retention schedule if subject to a current Legal Hold or other legal issue Must be retained as permanent until a records schedule is approved by NARA 12 Terms & Definitions Some examples of temporary records include: Time and attendance files Employee travel documents Procurement files Budget files General accounting files 13 Terms & Definitions Electronic records are created by means of a computing device, subsequently stored on electronic storage media, and retrievable through electronic means. Electronic records: Are subject to records retention requirements just like other records Should be retained according to the requirements of your Operating Administration s (OA) Records Management program 14 Terms & Definitions Non-record materials are U.S. government-owned documentary materials that do not meet the conditions of a record. Non-record materials may: Have evidentiary value and therefore be within the scope of a legal hold Need to be turned over for Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests 15 Terms & Definitions Examples of non-record materials include: Duplicate copies of documents maintained in the official files Catalogs, trade journals and other reference materials Documents used only for reference or exhibition purposes Extra copies of correspondence Stocks of publications 16 Terms & Definitions Personal documents are papers and files belonging to an employee that are not used to conduct business. Personal documents are: Accumulated by an employee before joining government service and not used subsequently in the transaction of government business Related solely to an individual s private affairs Not prepared, used for, circulated, or communicated in the course of transacting Agency business Not to be kept with records 17 Terms & Definitions Vital records are records that are essential to the continued functioning of the Department/Agency and its operating units during and after an emergency. Emergency operating records Those needed to continue the most critical operating unit functions of the Agency Legal and financial rights records Those needed to protect the legal and financial rights of the government, individuals and entities directly affected by its activities (e.g., payroll records, contracts, and retirement records) 18 How to Identify a Record Many factors contribute to the determination that documents are federal records. According to NARA guidance, if the answer to any of the following questions is yes, you should consider the document a federal record. Did the Agency require creation or submission and maintenance of the document? Was the document used to conduct or facilitate Agency business? If the document is a draft or preliminary document created for background or similar purpose, does it: Explain how the Agency formulated and executed programs, policies, decisions, or actions? Contain unique information? Memorialize an Agency decision? Covered by an item in a records retention schedule? 19 October 2010 How to Identify a Record Start: You created or received a document Does it relate to your agency s, or your, responsibilities? No Non record Yes Are you the Sender/Creator? No Are you the Recipient? No Non record Yes Yes Non record No Does it explain, justify or document an action or decision? Yes Do you need to take an action? No Non record Yes RECORD File as required 20 Records s qualify as records if they: Document the formulation and execution of policies, decisions, or actions Document important meetings (e.g., discuss or attach meeting minutes or agendas) Protect the financial, legal, and other rights of the government and of persons directly affected by the government's actions Note: Personal accounts should NOT be used for work. Retain records according to the requirements of your operating administration s Records Management program. 21 Records Retention Schedules A Records Retention Schedule is a document that provides legal authority for the final disposition, including destruction or preservation, of the records in an office, component, or Agency. Note: A Records Retention Schedule is sometimes called a Records Disposition Schedule. 22 Records Retention Schedules The two types of Records Schedules are the General Records Schedules (GRS) and DOT-specific Schedules. General Records Schedules (GRS) Cover records common among several agencies Cover records relating to fiscal accounting, procurement, communications, printing, and other common functions In most cases, do not need further approval from NARA for disposition to be implemented DOT-specific Schedules Cover program records specific to either DOT or an OA within DOT Need NARA approval before the disposition action set forth in the records retention schedules can be implemented GRS schedules can be found at To access DOT-specific schedules, contact your Records Management Officer. 23 Records Retention Schedules Sample Schedule Matrix Description Record Type Record Series Retention Schedule Files relating to dayto-day commission activities Federal Advisory Committees, Boards and Councils Temporary Commissions, Boards, Counsels & Committees GRS 26 Disposition Destroy on termination of commission Requests from air carriers for compensation Administrator s correspondence, internal memoranda, reports, meeting minutes Correspondence between Agency and air carriers Paper, , and other media Carrier Compensation Files Administrator s Correspondence Files N N , item 2a Transfer to Federal Records Center (FRC) when 5 years old. Destroy when 20 years old Cut off at end of calendar year. Transfer to FRC 3 years after cutoff. Transfer to National Archives 10 years after cutoff A Records Schedule must contain clear descriptions for identification and disposition. 24 Legal Holds A Legal Hold Is a communication issued as a result of current or reasonably anticipated litigation, audit, federal government investigation, congressional inquiry, FOIA request, Privacy Act request, or other such matter. A Legal Hold: Suspends the normal disposition or processing of all documents described in the Legal Hold, including records and non-records May also be called a hold order, freeze notice, preservation order, or suspension order 25 Recap What is a record? In simple terms, information in any media created or received while fulfilling the duties of your position or conducting official business that evidences Agency functions, organization, and activities Why Records Management? Contributes to smooth operation of Agency programs Protects rights of citizens and Agency There are legal consequences for non-compliance Who is responsible? All employees and contractors are responsible for the maintenance of records they create 26 Statutes and Regulations Laws and regulations governing federal Records Management include: Federal Records Act of U.S.C., chapters 21, 29, 31, and 33 Title 36 CFR Parts 1220 through U.S.C. Chapter 101 E-government Act of 2002 Section 207 A complete list of federal Records Management laws and regulations can be found at E-government regulations can be found at 27 Additional Resources DOT s Records Management Policy can be found here: %20signed.pdf A list of DOT Records Officers and contact information can be found here: The DOT Records Management home site on SharePoint can be found here: 28
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