Insights from practitioners in Information Management

Online Retention and Disposal Application – ORDA

ORDA is intended to allow Retention and Disposal Schedules to be drafted:

?Online while logged into the system; or
?Using offline capability, then logging in to upload; or
?Using third-party software, then uploading to ORDA.
ORDA will be a secure web application requiring a client (i.e. a government records manager or similar, or a private consultant engaged by a government agency) to log into the system for online drafting capability or to submit a completed Retention and Disposal Schedule to the State Records Office for review.  

A client’s log-in access will be provided only for the period required for that client’s Retention and Disposal Schedule to progress from draft to approval.

Once Retention and Disposal Schedules are approved, it is intended that they would be searchable and accessible within ORDA for other clients drafting their own Retention and Disposal Schedules. The purpose of this functionality is to allow clients to make informed decisions about:

?retention periods;
?disposal actions; and
?access restrictions (if required)
against a wider background of decision-making and to also encourage consistency in such areas as appropriate.

The State Records Office intends formulating:

?a collection policy that articulates criteria for identifying State archives; and
?a restricted access archives framework that articulates criteria for restricting access to State archives and how long records under each criteria should be restricted for.
It is intended that such criteria would integrate with ORDA so that, when drafting a Retention and Disposal Schedule, clients can benchmark and justify decisions about appraisal and restricted access archives against wider frameworks.


Against this background, the State Records Office asks:

1)  Do you have any general or specific concerns or comments about ORDA? If so, what are they?

2) Do you have any concerns about the intended capability for clients to search across approved Retention and Disposal Schedules for the purposes of checking precedents? If so, what are these concerns and what is their basis?

3) Do you think appraisal and restricted access criteria would assist you in your decision-making when drafting Retention and Disposal Schedules? If not, do you wish to make any other recommendations?

The State Records Office would welcome any feedback on these three areas by 1 June 2010. Please email your feedback to the ORDA Project Manager Damien Hassan at the State Records Office.

State Records Office Business Objective of ORDA

The State Records Office’s business objective for ORDA is to integrate all processes associated with the preparation and submission of Retention and Disposal Schedules, as well as their ongoing management (e.g. tracking, reporting, etc.) at the State Records Office. The development of this system will mark a shift away from submission of Retention and Disposal Schedules and other Disposal Authorities to the State Records Office in hardcopy.

The reasons for developing ORDA:

?to streamline processes associated with the drafting and submission of Retention and Disposal Schedules to the State Records Office;
?to allow the review/feedback of Retention and Disposal Schedules between clients and the State Records Office to happen via the web application, while still allowing discussion through meetings, on-site appraisal, etc.;
?to integrate records appraisal criteria and restricted access (to archives) criteria into the application for client ease-of-use and to also ensure such decisions are benchmarked against over-arching frameworks;
?to allow the information across a range of Retention and Disposal Schedules to be used globally by the State Records Office for reporting, analytical and other business purposes;
?to provide a dedicated system that is fit-for-purpose and that allows central control of registration, workflow, version control and other internal management purposes.
As ORDA will provide a central database of government records retention and disposal decisions, the application will allow capability to search for existing precedents. This is intended to support the consistency of decision-making when individual Retention and Disposal Schedules are being drafted.

Feedback would be appreciated, please contact Damien Hassan of the State Records Office