Tyrene, the interactions that I have had with various SMEs in developing
file plans and other records keeping systems is to facilitate the creation
of a common understanding various SME/non-SME team members have of their
records keeping needs. The SMEs provide invaluable information regarding
workflow, language, documentation, legal requirements that they are aware
of, and stakeholders, but they may not be describing these needs in a
language that is commonly understood across all team members, nor may they
be considering how these needs translate into effective records keeping
practices in a shared system.

Consider a records keeping system that has SMEs in engineering, accounting,
IT, legal, and administration. Each of these will have different
priorities, needs, and terminology that they bring to the table. My job in
such circumstances has been to first draw out of the SMEs their own
thoughts, then facilitate the conversation of the team in arriving at a
common understanding of records keeping requirements. Successfully doing
this results in records keeping systems that stand the test of time.

In the electronic records training I do in the county with my co-worker,
Jenny Mundy, I illustrate this by talking about a project I set up for a
large water utility. That utility maintained "conduits, mains, and pipes",
and created many records identified as such. Yet the only people who
understood that there was even a distinction between these three terms were
the water engineers (who were not involved in actual records maintenance) -
to everyone else, they were interchangeable. As a result, if administrative
staff got a document on a "conduit", they would typically copy it in the
file for "pipes" and "mains" as well. Facilitating a common understanding
of the terms helped resolve a lot of duplication and confusion in their
records system, and also reduced considerable frustration that had
surrounded the system (for those interested: conduits bring the water from
the watershed, mains take the water from the conduit to your neighborhood,
and pipes take the water from the main to your house).

BTW, this is rather nicely illustrated in Meadke, Robek and Brown in their
section on file classification.

On Mon, Jul 29, 2013 at 11:55 AM, Tyrene Bada <[log in to unmask]>wrote:

> One of the aspects that I enjoy about our profession is the opportunity to
> collaborate with other departments and disciplines.  Every organization is
> different, so there is no single "one-size-fits-all" approach to how RM is
> integrated into the business workflow and org chart.  However, I have found
> the relationship between a SME (subject matter expert) and a records
> management professional to be common.  I believe this could be the core of
> how RM interacts with organization.  According to the "RM Bible" (page 99,
> Information and Records Management; Robek, Brown, et al.): "The records
> management team, consisting of the records manager, owners of the records
> involved, and professional staff, is responsible for developing the file
> plan..."
> How would you describe the responsbilities and dutes of both the SME and a
> records management professional in creating a file plan or classification
> system?
> As a newly minted CRM, I have a clear opinion to my own answer.  However,
> the ICRM Code of Ethics states "CRM's shall use all reasonable care to
> obtain factual evidence to support their opinion."  This posting is part of
> my research to obtain that factual evidence.  I have already searched the
> listserv archives, and will continue to look into other resources, such as
> "The Principles," Section 404 of Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and ISO 15489.  Fun
> times!
> Tyrene Bada, MLS, CRM
> Records Management | Office of the City Attorney
> City of Beaverton | PO Box 4755 | Beaverton OR  97076-4755
> p: 503.526.2298 |
> [log in to unmask]
> Vice President-Programs / Immediate Past President, Oregon Chapter of ARMA
> International
> Professional Member, AIIM
> This e-mail is a public record of the City of Beaverton and is subject to
> public disclosure unless exempt from disclosure under Oregon Public Records
> Law.  This email is subject to the State Retention Schedule.
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Dwight Wallis
Multnomah County Records Management
1620 SE 190th Avenue
Portland, OR 97233
ph: (503)988-3741
cell: (503)260-2263
fax: (503)988-3754
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