All federal agencies to change their database management services

August 8, 2013

Last year, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) issued a directive asking all agencies, including offices within the Executive Branch, to transition toward a digital records management software. Out of 281 agencies a part of NARA’s network, the Department of Interior is already making headway toward a paperless office.

Recently, NARA released a report detailing how offices are doing in their progress toward implementing these new technologies. Some departments are experiencing difficulties because of unsupportive senior staff members and lack of funding, according to Fierce Government IT. About 85 percent of bureaus responded to the NARA’s fourth assessment report.

“The purpose of the [assessment] is to provide NARA and federal agencies with an objective measure of the current state of records management programs, the impact of changes made since the previous assessment, and data that can be used to make future changes,” IT specialist Arian Ravanbakhsh explained on NARA’s website.

Record managers should get everyone involved in transitions, including senior staff. Reiterating the importance of keeping these records on a secure network can streamline workflow and improve efficiency in the long-run.

Despite the challenges, the reported stated that 59 percent of agencies are changing their data processes and utilizing new digital records management software for long-term use. Upcoming requirements for these offices include drawing out a detailed strategy on how to digitize these files by the end of 2013, having all emails stored on a document management server by 2016 and then moved to an entirely programmed system by 2019, according to Next Gov.

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