Federal Records Management

Universal Electronic Records Management (ERM) Requirements

  Download the Universal Electronic Records Management Requirements Spreadsheet  

The Universal ERM Requirements identify high level business needs for managing electronic records. They are baseline ERM program requirements derived from existing statutes, standards, NARA regulations, policy, and guidance. They are a starting point for agencies to use when developing system requirements. Records management staff should work with acquisitions and IT personnel to tailor any final system requirements. The document contains an abstract, list of lifecycle requirements, list of transfer format requirements, and a glossary. 

These requirements contain six sections based on the lifecycle of electronic records management:

1.    Capture
2.    Maintenance and Use
3.    Disposal
4.    Transfer
5.    Metadata
6.    Reporting

The requirements are either “program” requirements, relating to the design and implementation of an agency’s ERM policies and procedures, or “system” requirements, providing technical guidance to vendors in creating ERM tools and specifications for agencies to consider when procuring them.  

The requirements are then either mandatory (“Must Have”) or preferred (“Should Have”). These designations help vendors determine what functions their tools must perform, as opposed to those that are ideal. “Must Have” and “Should Have” requirements also help agencies prioritize procurement of these ERM tools according to their needs and financial priorities.

NARA will be supporting these requirements going forward and will be updating them to stay current with changes in technology, regulations and guidance products.