Sue Trombley, managing director of thought leadership at Iron Mountain, believes federal agencies will need to strike up greater collaboration between records managers and information technology professionals to be able to digitize information in time for the government’s 2019 deadline, she writes in an FCW piece published Wednesday.
According to Trombley, there are several ways to convert paper into electronic form, key among which are to set goals early and agree on a common language, especially in the use of industry terminology.
“Although each group brings its own expertise to the digitization process, together, and in compliance with National Archives and Records Administration procedures, they can form a winning partnership to propel agencies forward during their move to digital records,” Trombley writes.
In 2011, the White House sought to set up the backbone of its open data initiative when it put out guidelines that required agencies to streamline all electronic records according to a standard format.
According to the presidential directive, modernized records management will promote efficiency, accessibility and accountability as well as cut spending amid the growing volume and type of records departments and agencies maintain.
Trombley notes that beyond terms used and planned goals, another issue RM and IT professionals need to pay close attention to is the tools they will need to carry out the work, including scalable storage space and sustainable records management practices.
“By bringing together RM and IT to work on records modernization, federal agencies will meet mandated goals faster,” Trombley writes.
“Moving forward, there will no doubt be more steps to take to better bridge the gap between the groups, but their progress has already started to move the federal government forward, making digitization a more seamless process while modernizing information management programs and fostering a more open government,” she concludes.