Records Managers

NARA Bulletin 99-04 Attachment F

Sample Plan for Scheduling Electronic Copies of Records of Department/Agency

The following is an example of a plan that an agency headed by a Director might submit to describe its assessment of recordkeeping guidance and milestones for developing and submitting schedules to cover all of its electronic copies within a two year period. The required elements of a plan are described in Attachment B. If you submit a plan, it must reflect your agency's strategy for implementing NARA Bulletin 99-04, but you do not have to follow the format in this example.

Introduction

As indicated in the attached letter from the Director*, the Federal Government Administration cannot complete schedules for its electronic copies of scheduled records created by word processing and electronic mail software within the time frame specified in NARA Bulletin 99-04. Consequently, we submit this plan, which, in accordance with Bulletin 99-04, includes our strategy for scheduling these records, an assessment of our recordkeeping guidance, and milestones for completing schedules within two years.

*See Attachment E for the sample letter from the Director of the Federal Government Administration. (The Federal Government Administration is not a real agency).

Strategy for revising existing schedules to cover electronic copies

The Federal Government Administration is comprised of five organizational components: Office of the Director, which includes the General Counsel, Congressional Liaison, Public Affairs, and other staff offices; Office of Administration, which is responsible for personnel, budget, and other administrative functions; Office of Policy, which develops overall policies in the area of undersea transportation; Office of Regulatory Affairs, which formulates and issues rules and regulations; Office of Inspections and Investigations, which monitors compliance with agency rules and regulations. All agency offices are located in Washington, DC, except for the Office of Inspections and Investigations, which has field offices in eight major ports in addition to a Washington-based central office.

In 1987, two years after the agency's establishment, five schedules were approved by NARA, one for each of the offices discussed above: N1-888-88-1 (Office of the Director), N1-888-88-2 (Office of Administration), N1-888-88-3 (Office of Policy), N1-888-88-4 (Office of Regulatory Affairs), and N1-888-88-5 (Office of Inspections and Investigations). Together, these schedules covered all agency records. In the early 1990s, three additional schedules were submitted, each covering one or two new series, mainly in the Office of the Director. All eight approved schedules have been consolidated in a printed issuance, Agency Handbook 1500. The current edition was issued in January 1995.

We intend to review the scheduled series of the Office of the Director, Office of Policy, and Office of Regulatory Affairs in the first year of our plan since those offices create the greatest number of permanent records in the agency. These offices also share the same network, e-mail, and word processing systems. In the second year of our plan, we will review the schedules of the remaining offices. As part of the review of the schedules, we will develop and submit to NARA new schedules to cover electronic copies.

Description of recordkeeping guidance and its implementation

Chapter I of Agency Handbook 1500 contains guidance that addresses such issues as the ownership of official Agency records, when drafts and other work papers must be treated as official records, the need to document decisions reached in meetings or telephone conversations, and the distinction between personal files and official records. Agency Directive 1500.1, issued in June of 1996, provides guidance to agency staff concerning e-mail. Both these issuances are up-to-date and are based on NARA guidance. A notice reminding agency staff of these requirements is issued annually.

All offices (down to the section level) have a copy of Agency Handbook 1500, which is also available on our internal web site. Agency Directive 1500.1 was provided to all employees and also is available on our web site. The records management staff provides annual training to records liaisons in program offices on recordkeeping guidance and the training and inspection necessary to ensure adequate implementation. Records liaisons provide additional training as necessary and inspect recordkeeping practices.

Milestones for taking actions

These milestones are based on receiving NARA approval of our plan by June 1, 2000:

June 2000 - September 2000. The Director will establish an oversight group, including information technology, records management and key program officials, to provide guidance and direction for the effort. The oversight group will assemble a records management team and develop procedures for assessing agency business needs for electronic copies of agency records and developing schedules that reflect these needs.

October - November 2000 - The records management team will evaluate electronic copies of records of the Office of the Director. The records management team will primarily rely on input from records liaisons in these offices, but will make some on-site visits.

December 2000 - Records officer will develop and secure internal clearance for schedule for electronic copies accumulated by the Office of the Director.

January 2001 - Submit Office of the Director schedule covering electronic copies to NARA.

December 2000 - February 2001 - Records management team will evaluate electronic copies of records of the Office of Regulatory Affairs and its component offices. Records management team will primarily rely on input from records liaisons in these offices, but will make some on-site visits.

March 2001 - Records officer will develop and secure internal clearance for schedule for electronic copies accumulated by the Office of Regulatory Affairs.

April 2001 - Submit Office of Regulatory Affairs schedule covering electronic copies to NARA.

March 2001 - April 2001 - Records management team will evaluate electronic copies of records of the Office of Policy. Records management team will rely primarily on input from records liaisons, but will make some on-site visits.

May 2001 - Records management team will develop and secure internal clearance for schedule for electronic copies accumulated by the Office of Policy.

June 2001 - Submit Office of Policy schedule covering electronic copies to NARA.

July 2001 - August 2001 - Records management team will evaluate electronic copies of records of the Office of Inspections and Investigations. Team will rely primarily on input from records liaisons, but may make some on-site visits.

September 2001 - Records management team will develop and secure internal clearance for schedule for electronic copies accumulated by the Office of Inspections and Investigations.

October 2001 - Submit Office of Inspections and Investigations schedule covering electronic copies to NARA.

September 2001 - Records management team will evaluate electronic copies of records of the Office of Administration. Team will rely solely on input from records liaisons.

October 2001 - Records management team will develop and secure internal clearance for schedule for electronic copies accumulated by the Office of Administration.

November 2001 - Submit Office of Administration schedule covering electronic copies to NARA.

NARA Bulletin 99-04
Attachment A

Attachment B
Attachment C
Attachment D
Attachment E
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