This is the fourth report issued by the Chief Archivist and General Manager of Archives New Zealand under section 33 and 35 of the Public Records Act 2005 (the Act). This report provides an overview of the key issues and opportunities for government recordkeeping and presents the results of the audits completed during the 2013/14 financial year.
The purposes of the Act include enabling Government to be held accountable through creating and maintaining full and accurate records of its affairs, and enhancing public confidence in the integrity of public records. The auditing of specified recordkeeping practices and reporting of findings to Parliament directly contribute to those objectives.
This year’s audits indicated that a robust information and records management culture is gradually being instilled into public offices. Several of the audited public offices showed a high level of commitment to good recordkeeping and plans in place to further improve the management of records. Since the passing of the Act, public offices have undertaken significant work to improve recordkeeping practices, and awareness of the business benefits of good recordkeeping continues to grow. Best practice for digital recordkeeping is still developing, and there are opportunities to embed good recordkeeping practices into core business systems.
Whilst the findings from this year’s audits are an improvement on the performance of public offices in 2012/13 we are concerned that, although the Act came into force nearly 10 years ago, only half of the public offices audited in 2013/14 have sufficient recordkeeping maturity.