2015 RMSA Released

We are pleased to announce that the 2015 Records Management-Self Assessment (RMSA) report has been posted to our website (.pdf). In FY 2015, all 260 agencies that received the RMSA completed the self-assessment. This includes all Cabinet-level department records officers, departmental components, and independent agencies.

Laurence Brewer, Chief Records Officer for the U.S. Government, said, “This is our seventh RMSA, and we are very pleased to see real progress being made by agencies. We expect this improvement to continue, especially as agencies continue to work towards achieving the goals in the Managing Government Records Directive.”

Some highlights from the 2015 report:

  • There continues to be gradual improvement in overall scores.
  • RMSA findings and recommendations are consistent with the goals and requirements of the Managing Government Records Directive (OMB M-12-18). We believe improvement will continue as the requirements of M-12-18 are implemented and as our records management oversight activities persist.
  • The majority of agencies indicated their records management staff have oversight over records created at the highest levels of their agency (e.g., those of the agency head, senior advisors, and executive staff.)
  • Agencies have policies and procedures in place for email. However, there is little or no auditing for compliance.
  • A majority of agencies are planning to implement the Capstone approach for managing their email.
  • Fewer than half of agencies report having records management staff participating in the design, development, and implementation of new electronic information systems. Of those who participate, only a quarter have approval authority.

We use this annual self-assessment to determine whether Federal agencies are compliant with statutory and regulatory records management requirements as well as to identify trends and areas where further guidance may be necessary. Federal agencies can use the annual self-assessment to identify strong and weak areas of their records management programs and to determine the impact of changes they have made since the previous self-assessment. As a whole, the data can be used to improve records management practices within the Federal Government.

We are committed to continuing our work with Federal agencies to strengthen their records management programs and improve the RMSA scores across the Government. We look forward to working with Congress, OMB, and the Federal agencies to strengthen records management, modernize federal recordkeeping practices, and facilitate the transition to a digital Government.

All of our past RMSA reports are available here. If you have any questions regarding the RMSA, please feel free to leave a comment here on the blog or send an email to rmselfassessment@nara.gov.

About Arian Ravanbakhsh

Supervisory Records Management Policy Analyst in the Office of the Chief Records Officer.
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