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Find out about roles and responsibilities

Staff need to be aware of their recordkeeping roles and responsibilities.

Responsibility for managing your recordkeeping system (a records, information management, or administrative team or officer) also needs to be decided.

Roles and responsibilities should be considered when developing your strategic recordkeeping plan.

1. Roles and responsibilities

Responsibilities can usually be grouped according to position or areas within your organisation.

Chief Executives

Chief executives are required to:

  • ensure recordkeeping is included in business processes
  • provide resources to maintain your recordkeeping system
  • promote and support a positive recordkeeping culture
  • endorse the disposal of records
  • set restricted access periods for records held in the custody of QSA.

The CEO can also delegate certain authorisations.

Find out more about delegating authorisations (PDF, 375 KB).

Resources for CEOs

Managers

Managers are required to:

  • ensure all employees are aware of recordkeeping policies and procedures
  • assign recordkeeping responsibilities to the right people
  • ensure recordkeeping processes support business processes–this means making sure recordkeeping is built into your processes
  • ensure there is no unauthorised disposal of records–this means ensuring that disposal is in accordance with an authorised retention and disposal schedule.

Employees

All public service employees are required to:

  • comply with recordkeeping policies and procedures
  • create and capture records of work activities
  • secure records from unauthorised access
  • ensure there is no unauthorised disposal of records–find out who is responsible for endorsing the destruction of records in your agency.

Records manager/records team (if applicable)

If your agency has a dedicated records manager or records team, they are required to:

  • establish and manage a recordkeeping system
  • identify business recordkeeping requirements
  • ensure recordkeeping training is provided to all employees
  • coordinate the disposal of records in accordance with approved retention and disposal schedules
  • ensure appropriate access to records (e.g. through control, storage).

Your agency may have a centralised records and/or information management team responsible for major recordkeeping tasks (e.g. creating files, registering documents, managing access and security). If this is the case, you will need to clearly communicate this to all staff. Staff remain responsible for creating and keeping records of their work.

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2. Delegating authorisations

In your agency, the CEO can delegate authorisation to:

Delegations should be to people with the appropriate skills, knowledge and authority.

Destruction or transfer of records

Delegations:

  • can only come from the CEO
  • cannot be sub-delegated–this means a delegate cannot give responsibility to someone else
  • can be to an appropriate external position if a service provider manages records on your behalf–for more information see machinery-of-government changes
  • can be to an appropriate position or a named officer.

You do not need to inform QSA if you have chosen to delegate responsibilities around the destruction or transfer of records.

Restricted access periods and authorised access

Delegations:

  • can only come from the CEO
  • cannot be sub-delegated–this means a delegate cannot give responsibility for setting RAPs to someone else
  • must be to a position within your agency rather than a named officer
  • can be to an appropriate external position if a service provider manages records on your behalf–for more information see machinery-of-government changes
  • can include determining RAPs, approval for administrative access to restricted records held at QSA and changing RAPs as required
  • can be included when delegating responsibilities for endorsing the disposal or transfer of records
  • are renewed every 2 years through the delegation of authority (records access) form (DOC, 285 KB).

The CEO always retains these powers and does not need to complete the form.

All access requests will be sent to the CEO if an authorised delegate is not nominated. You can provide a preferred contact point (e.g. generic email address) in section 4 of the delegation of authority (records access) form (DOC, 285 KB)

If nominated positions change, you must complete a new form and forward it to QSA.

More information

Information on delegating responsibilities can be found in s27 of the Acts Interpretation Act 1954.

See more about delegating recordkeeping responsibilities (PDF, 375 KB).

3. Communicating roles and responsibilities

Practical ways of communicating roles and responsibilities include:

  • developing and communicating a recordkeeping policy
  • training and awareness–including training programs, employee inductions and regular communications
  • incorporating recordkeeping responsibilities into position descriptions
  • defining recordkeeping responsibilities in contracts and related documents
  • incorporating responsibilities in performance development planning.

4. Training and awareness

Training and awareness programs can be used to ensure staff understand their responsibilities and have the right knowledge and skills to make and keep records.

A recordkeeping training and awareness program will usually cover:

  • what employees need to do–their recordkeeping responsibilities
  • why they need to do it–the legal recordkeeping obligations of your agency
  • how they are going to do it–examples of records that employees need to keep and how they can capture, keep and lawfully destroy them.

The type of training and awareness program you choose, and how it is implemented and delivered will depend on your agency.

Format of training

Training and awareness should be delivered in the best format for your agency:

Online

  • Flexible
  • Can combine visual and audio content
  • Reporting functionality can be used to monitor participation.

Technology-based

  • Useful for practical training in the use of recordkeeping applications and technology
  • Experience in training environments good for employee confidence.

Procedures

  • Procedural documents can be used alone, or to support other training methods
  • Publish procedures for easy access
  • Present procedures during induction processes.

Informal face-to-face

  • Integrate recordkeeping into team meetings, workshops or other training sessions
  • Tailor messages to the audience or subject matter.

Formal face-to-face

  • Regular training and awareness sessions allow employees to attend when it is convenient for them
  • These sessions might be longer, more comprehensive and tailored to the audience (e.g. new employee induction).

Informal publications

  • Regular reminders, tips, or announcements can be put in blog posts, intranet articles, newsletters or social media updates.

On-the-job training

  • Informal training can be fostered through the appointment of ‘champions’–responsible for promoting recordkeeping in their workgroup.

Find out more about marketing your recordkeeping team’s services.

Training to capture records

Ensure that staff know how to create and capture records, including:

  • how to identify a record–adapt and use what records do I need to keep? (DOC, 47 KB)
  • what recordkeeping solutions should be used to capture your high-value business records
  • the specifics of capturing records, like how to title records and apply proper security.

Document this information in your recordkeeping procedures as a collection of work instructions, a guideline, a manual or a web-based tool.

Find out more about developing processes and procedures.