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Amy, hats off to you for such a gallant (and costly) effort to raise the
standards of records storage.  I always appreciate another records center
that cares as much (sometimes more) about their client's records as their
clients do.  I do wish that more clients put a premium on the actual quality
and integrity of storage though.  Touring your off-site records provider
should be a course of regular business, before and after entrusting  them
with your information assets.  Service and storage polling and audits may
very well be a rude awakening for most users of off-site.  Some end users
don't even know which building of their vendor their boxes are in, it's left
up to the vendor to decide which is more convenient to them.  Often, one
building is shown initially, yet their boxes are stored at an entirely
different location, usually of lesser quality!  The more you know about your
off-site records center, and the more that they invest in the well-being of
the lifeblood of your business, the safer your records will be, period.

Glen, I'm sorry, but I disagree with your opinion on archival/long term
document storage.  If stored properly, paper will last practically
indefinitely (this is why we offer specialized document vaults).  We also
offer imaging/microfilming services, but mostly for high retrieval documents
and/or wide distribution needs.  Data migration, hardware and software are
all concerns for archival electronic document storage, and should be
considered (especially when destroying the originals).  Microfilming is an
excellent choice for archival document storage since it's not software or
hardware dependent and is stable over long periods with proper storage.
Although once again, is unnecessary as long as there's not a high rate of
retrieval.  Why look at possibly damaging valuable documents by subjecting
them to scanning/micrography if  they'll almost never be retrieved?  The
cost of these services is MUCH higher than the cost of storage.  As far as
accessibility goes, the original is always only a couple of hours within
reach (24/7).

My thoughts...

Joseph Germinario
Allstate Business Archives/Vault Services
80 Beckwith Avenue
Paterson, NJ 07503-2804
973.345.7776x211 Phone
973.345.7838        Fax
mailto:[log in to unmask]
http://www.allstat.com/

 -----Original Message-----
From:   Sanderson, Glen [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent:   Thursday, January 25, 2001 9:30 AM
To:     [log in to unmask]
Subject:        Re: temperature and humidity control for paper,microfilm and
elec tronic records

Amy, I guess what was left out of the discussion was the difference between
"Storing" and "Archiving".  If a record is only going to be saved for 1--10
years, why go through the added expense of climate control, however if it is
material needs to be maintained longer read 10+ years - indef. if would be
worthwhile to keep it in the controlled environment, although I would argue
that records that need that type of care should be digitized or filmed and
the paper where appropriate should be destroyed.   All this could be avoided
if everything was electronic.

Thanks for your input.

TTFN

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Amy [SMTP:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Thursday,January 25,2001 8:18 AM
> To:   [log in to unmask]
> Subject:      Re: temperature and humidity control for paper,microfilm and
> elec tronic records
>
> Glen-
>
> Just a quick note on paper storage...  When we opened our first facility
> in
> 1994, we decided to heat and air condition the whole thing, as we believed
> that it would be common knowledge amongst RMs that a stable temperature
> range is desirable.  Boy, were we wrong!  We still heat and cool, but
> totally at our expense and not at a premium.  I would say the majority of
> our clients do not understand (nor value) this service.  Until RMs demand
> a
> stable environment for their paper records, the industry will not provide
> it.
>
> Amy Rand
> Chief Brain
> BrainCore
> [log in to unmask]