The National Archives recently hosted a meeting of Elder Agency Officials for Records Management (SAORM) & agency records officers from across the federal government. This meeting covered progress & plans for modernizing Federal recordkeeping & implementing strategic records management mandates & priorities.
I'm was pleased to greet so many Senior Agency Officials for Records Management here at the National Archives. For many, this was their first meeting in the new Presidential Administration.
These Senior officials have direct responsibility for ensuring their Dept. or agency efficiently & appropriately complies with all applicable records management statutes, regulations, NARA policy, & the requirements of the Managing Government Records Directive.
Under the direction of Laurence Brewer, Chief Records Officer of the United States, our Office of the Chief Records Officer does great work every day engaging with the SAORM community & ensuring that all SAORMs, especially those newly appointed, are briefed & ready to step into their critical roles in ensuring records and information are managed appropriately across the Federal government. The Office of the Chief Records Officer also completes important work collecting & analyzing the SAORM & agency reports on records management. Itâs one of the ways we understand how much progress has been made in improving records management in agencies and how far we have to go.
Federal agencies & officials must remain aware of the laws, regulations, & guidance governing how records & information are identified and managed in compliance with the Federal Records Act. Managing government records is essential not only to ensure agency activities are documented in order to meet legal requirements, but also to preserve our history for future generations. Properly executed, records management increases the efficiency & effectiveness of every government activity by ensuring that federal employees can find what they need, when they need it.
SAORMs bear a special responsibility for ensuring their agencies meet these obligations. In particular, we rely on agency SAORMs to ensure that the political appointees and agency heads are properly informed of their records management responsibilities. We want all agencies to be successful in meeting these responsibilities, & to help drive the change needed to modernize recordkeeping in the Government as envisioned in the 2012 Managing Government Records Directive. To achieve this goal, records management must be a critical component of every agencyâs overall information governance strategy.
At this meeting, I will shared this brief video with our SAORMs describing the records management responsibilities political appointees should be aware of when entering, working in, & leaving Federal Service:
We are pleased to have such an engaged community of Senior Agency Officials for Records Management continuing to improve records management across the federal government. I am thank all the SAORMs for their attendance & for their consideration of how they can be advocates for records management in their respective agencies to elevate its profile & importance.
For additional guidance, please consult the following resources:
Documenting Your Public Service: https://www.archives.gov/records-mgmt/publications/documenting-your-public-service.html
Records Management Guidance for Political Appointees: https://www.archives.gov/files/records-mgmt/publications/rm-for-political-appointees.pdf