President Obama stated, “The current federal records management system is based on an outdated approach involving paper and filing cabinets.” NARA suggested ideas about reducing unnecessary costs and burdens. Instead of each Agency spending staff resources and funds to develop and implement its own federally compliant electronic recordkeeping system, NARA should offer this as a service, like they do for our paper records via the Federal Records Center program. With today’s technologies and cloud storage capabilities, it makes economical and logical sense for NARA to provide a similar capability and service for our electronic records too.
This Federal repository would enable Agencies to transfer inactive records to a compliant recordkeeping system where they can be professionally managed by NARA in accordance with federal rules. Agencies would have direct on-line access to their business records in the FRC repository and be able to search and retrieve them when they need them.
The FRC repository could become an extension of the Agencies own business systems, i.e., their “archive” for less active business records. Using one of the many commercially available certified records management applications, NARA would be able to apply retention, perform disposition, manage litigation holds, and even provide automated tools or capabilities to support our eDiscovery needs.