Topic-icon Transitory Records

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1 year 7 months ago #121 by foirecords@hotmail.com
Transitory Records was created by foirecords@hotmail.com
Has anybody seen some good resources/wording of the description/definition of transitory records that is useful in communication to staff?

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1 year 7 months ago #122 by bankstrevor@ymail.com
Replied by bankstrevor@ymail.com on topic Transitory Records
There have been many attempts to equate Transitory with a simple equivalent term or with a simple definition. You might have seen ROT. Redundant, Outdated, Trivial. Not bad. Web folks seem to have latched onto that one quite a lot, when they want to justify taking down web pages.

"Transitory = that which no longer has value" is not bad... but then you really have to explain "value". As in value to the company whist the employee only understands value to themselves.

You can ramp up the degree of complexity somewhat by saying Transitory = That which as no business value or that which has no value for business" but again, that is not an easily intuitive digestible definition for end users

We can ran a program based on recycle logic - where we said "red, yellow green, Keep it clean". Red was Transitory, aka stuff that simply is about 10 of your employees immediate emails or paper that is so rough draft that it has superseded four times over and thus really could be thrown and the world wouldn't end. Yellow was reference (to the user - not the company) aka CYA stuff that the user is not quite ready to pitch. And green was the good stuff that was to then managed.

I might suggest, Transitory be explained to employees as "stuff that you use to Cover Your *ss". They'll understand that point. Meaning, while they think what they are holding onto is super important, the reality for the management who are responsible for the processes that generated the materials, this stuff/records has no reason to keep it as an official output of a process that they'd be proud to show off via a foip/atip.

So one last thought for you. "Transitory - of short duration." Simply tell employees it's the stuff that is kept for 2 years and less.

Again, if you aren't looking for Policysh based definition, the open your mind to a creative way of labeling materials no one will ever look.
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1 year 7 months ago #123 by bankstrevor@ymail.com
Replied by bankstrevor@ymail.com on topic Transitory Records
Dave, on top on what I rambled on about, if you want to see some of the gov's approach to teach this idea/concept/term, let me know, and I'll flip you the Policy definition use and some awareness materials that were used to describe this idea of transitory.

Ltr
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1 year 7 months ago #125 by carolynh
Replied by carolynh on topic Transitory Records
Hi Dave,
Here is our definition: "records that have limited, short-term value only and will not be needed in the future. They are not needed for statutory, legal, fiscal, administrative, operational or archival purposes and are not typically filed within a standard filing system." Our Transitory Records Policy goes into the five categories we use (modelled after Yukon Government's): 1) Temporary information. 2) Duplicates. 3) Drafts and working materials. 4) Publications. 5) Advertising materials.

Hope this is helpful.

Best,

Carolyn Harris
Information and Records Management Administrator
Kwanlin Dün First Nation
Whitehorse, Yukon
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1 year 2 months ago #205 by web@armavi.org
Replied by web@armavi.org on topic Transitory Records
Hi, I put together this blog post on the topic and pointed it back here! www.collabware.com/blog/2017/3/20/assess...agement-policy-clear
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1 year 2 months ago #206 by bankstrevor@ymail.com
Replied by bankstrevor@ymail.com on topic Transitory Records
Great use of the Forum to share this info. Thanks!

Indulge me. I wish to add more thoughts. Here is my continuing thoughts on this whole topic of Disposition, and the place Transitory, as a concept, has inside this discussion, are as follows:

#1 Responding with language entitled Duty to Document (as kicked up by the 2015 triple delete thing) is a faulty approach. I get it; Information Commissioners [IC]) are trying to get end-users to have their materials actually findable. And their approach is to institute a "record what you do/say" response via legislation. But attempting to fight the oral culture of decision making, and the pervasiveness of email/pins/texting etc.. with legislation is ineffective. "Culture eats strategy for lunch." So, good luck to them (IC). Especially when the legislation comes with no consequences! All they can do is "audit and make a recommendation". Whatever. What needs addressing is a deeply rooted cultural addiction of using email. The is certainly true in Minister's offices, the device of choice for those working in Minister's office.

#2 Marketing Transitory
Which brings me to culture. Civil servants are shaped by public attitudes which are shaped, in turn, by media. Media's use of scandal when writing about delete means we in IM can not market the term Transitory as a positive way to manage info. The word is akin to cover up. Despite our awareness efforts, we have not succeeded at empowering civil servants to respond to a media's request with explicit specific answers that show they followed a process to manage info, that respected retention dates; and nor have we made any inroads with IT knowing the difference between back up tapes and the real thing, despite what ever policy guidance we have.

Which brings me our guidance. The whole idea of articulating anything via the right policy is also insufficient at addressing this topic. Until a CIO takes the policy and translate it into a business rule that flushes shared drives, emails, anything back up, well... guide all you want; the ones reading your policy or following you are fellow IMers.

Conclusion
Delete just doesn't hold water anymore. We sold "clean as you go" in order to help with findability. But we know now that better metadata is the key to that in the world we work in now. We know that And we don't help from IT who keep back up tapes for at least seven years (for some reason). To get a sense of the cultural attitudes, simply read blogs from techies. They simply can't fathom disposition being a 'thing' in an e-world way of working.

I'd love to see it discussed at the upcoming event co-hosted by ARMA Vi and the archives. No delete would theoretically snow up an archives who can't handle the full volume of info in a gov environement. But all they need to do is take the archival stuff for ease of access. They don't need us to delete 99% to get to 1%. Just take the 1% and lock it down in our systems (read only).

To beat this to death... Take way transitory as a concept. Stop spending efforts on cleaning up. Keep it all and spend time on metadata. If they know its all out there, they will stop using email and instead finally record their actions. Promote Open Government and let everyone know that into today's world the expectation is that gov is open not closed, a glass house if you will. So, make the way you operate legit not hidden. Write down your processes.

Ultimately this is a messy complicated issue. I'd love to see more of us talk about it, here or at ARMA Canada's upcoming conference.


my $0.05 (no pennies anymore)
(views expressed here are entirely mine).
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