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I don't see anywhere in your outline where you talk to the people you are going to impose this system on. Find out what they are doing now with their records/non records. Find out what works for them and what does not. Explore what's possible, not just what would be ideal from your point of view. Talk to them about space issues, liability issues, and retrieval times. Get their buy in to try something different. Start small. Proceed with your other points. 

William P Creamer Jr.
Records Manager 
New York New York


-----Original Message-----
From: Records Management Program [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Tim Barnard
Sent: Tuesday, July 07, 2009 11:29 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [RM] Starting an RM program from scratch


I need the wisdom of the Listserv in what shouldn't be such a problem.  
 
Part of my job is what I call a records management evangelist, trying to get our state's city and county governments to develop their own records management programs.  Then I have to train them on how to do it.  But how does one start a program from scratch?  
 
It seems that everything I find in books and articles deals with training a records manager for an existing program or strengthening or promoting an existing program, but surprisingly very little on how to actually start one.  
 
This is the basic outline of what I have so far:  
 
	* Appoint an overall records officer (manager) and records liaisons for each department. 
	* Fund the records management program.  In our state, local governments can elect to charge an additional $1 to any document filing fee for their RM program.  
	* Conduct a records inventory.  
	* Identify and prepare storage areas for both active and inactive records. 
	* Make an initial purge of records already eligible for disposal.  (We issue statewide retention schedules, so local governments don't have to create their own.)  
	* Establish policies and procedures.  
	* Train all employees in basic records procedures. 
	* Develop a disaster recovery / COOP plan that includes vital records.  
 These steps may not be in perfect order, but some can be done concurrently.  
 
It seems like I'm still missing something.  Any ideas?  
 
Tim Barnard
Local Government Records Office
Miss. Dept. of Archives and History 
 
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