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Memento : Issue 21
bytes When the auditors come knocking, do you see it as a threat or an opportunity? Would your records stand up to independent professional scrutiny? Four Commonwealth agencies asked themselves these questions last year when they participated in the first of a series of recordkeeping audits conducted by the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO). The report of this audit was tabled in Parliament in May 2002. It found that the audited agencies were at different stages in managing the transition from traditional paper-based recordkeeping systems to electronic ones. In the words of the Auditor- General, 'None of the organisations fully satisfied the audit criteria'. The recordkeeping audit drew heavily upon our e-permanence suite of standards and guidelines to develop its audit criteria and methodology. All four agencies reported that participation in the audit helped them identify areas of useful improvement and strategies for managing the transition to good recordkeeping in the electronic era. Archives staff assisted the ANAO with professional recordkeeping advice and expertise. This cooperative relationship between the Archives and the ANAO will continue throughout 2002--03 while further recordkeeping audits of Commonwealth agencies are conducted. Around 270,000 people work for the Commonwealth government. What do they have in common? They all need to make records of the work they do -- to help those that follow them, and to make sure the government can be held to account for its actions. Records and information staff manage the computerised and paper filing systems which are essential for agencies to keep good records. But good recordkeeping depends on individual officers knowing how to create good records and use the recordkeeping systems. When should you make a record and what information should you put in it? We are compiling some training materials to help officer s answer such questions. The material includes a shor t course that records and information manager s can present to staff, and a pamphlet and ready reference card for all staff. We expect the material to be available by early 2003. For fur ther information, contact Esther Robinson at email@example.com. september 2002 memento Did you make a record Make a record of important phone calls. The audit man (and woman) cometh of what you did today? 7 Car toon by Hinze/Scratch! Media