Records managers are responsible for accurately, securely and effectively managing information received and produced by a wide range of public and private sector organisations.
You’ll provide access to accurate records for a range of operational and strategic purposes and ensure that legal obligations are met. This includes controlling the number of records created and stored, and identifying which records are to be preserved for historical and research purposes and which should be destroyed.
Records management is often closely related to knowledge and information management, as well as information compliance (data protection and freedom of information), and some jobs will be an amalgamation of these roles.
Employers of records managers
Any organisation that handles large amounts of information may require the skills of a records manager; key sectors where you might find record managers are those where there is a great deal of regulations and supervision, such as the healthcare and finance.
- establishing new records management systems
- developing, maintaining, verifying and evaluating existing systems
- overseeing the switch from paper to electronic record-keeping
- writing reports and publications
- dealing with enquiries and requests for information from both internal and external clients
- ensuring that financial, legal or administrative requirements and regulations are complied with
- ensuring that data is protected
- classifying and indexing records
- destroying or archiving finished data/records
- ensuring that records are easily accessible when needed
- providing training to staff who require access or have responsibility for maintaining records
To become a records manager, you’ll normally need a first degree. The subject of your first degree isn’t particularly relevant, and records managers come from a range of backgrounds, including archives management, scientific research, financial and retail management, and the civil service.
- strong communication skills to deal with senior colleagues, suppliers and contractors;
- negotiation skills to persuade senior colleagues to follow agreed record storing guidelines;
- problem-solving and analytical skills to develop an understanding of how your organisation works and build integrated records systems;
- good project management and organisational skills;
- a good grasp of new technology to use and adapt to new IT packages and systems;
- an awareness of information management principles and familiarity with information systems and archives;
- attention to detail;
- flexibility to get involved in all aspects of information provision