James Lappin is a highly respected electronic records management guru out of the UK. James twitters often about RM issues and occasionally references this blog. I get a lot of readers coming here through links James creates in his RM tweets. Unfortunately, I’ve never corresponded with James because I don’t twitter. (It’s hard enough keeping track of all the other records I’m producing without adding tweets into the mix.)
Anyway, James recently posted a tweet referencing my post of my Office 14 SharePoint RM wish list. James suggested that he would add the ability to manage entire team sites as records to the list. I thought that was a very interesting idea. Something I hadn’t thought of before. What do you folks think? Do you see a need for this? How would you expect to manage whole team sites as records?
I know that some of the guys on the SharePoint product team occasionally check out this blog, so it may put a bug in their heads if they see there is a demand for this kind of feature out there in the real world. Let me know your thoughts…
One of the nice things about having a blog is the complete freedom it provides me. I can comment on anything I like without fear of being misquoted or taken out of context. It also affords me the opportunity to make corrections when I am misquoted by someone else. That’s what I’d like to do here.
AIIM recently published their annual ECM Buyer’s Guide and it included an article on SharePoint based Records Management for which I was interviewed. If you haven’t read the Buyer’s Guide and you are an AIIM member, you can get an electronic copy here. I’m quoted in the last article in Chapter 3, ‘Match Game – SharePoint for Records & Information Management ‘.
When I was interviewed for this article back in July, I didn’t realize that it wouldn’t be published for another eight months. Obviously, a lot can change in eight months. And if that wasn’t bad enough, I was never given an advance copy of the article, so I never got an opportunity to verify any of the comments that were attributed to me.
There are two statements I’d like to clarify. First, according to the article, I said:
“Microsoft suggests that you have one records center per server farm, and to me, that is not practical. You can’t have an enterprise program with multiple records centers because of the huge volumes.”
Now, if you’ve read this blog at all, you would know that the first sentence is correct; I do not believe one Records Center per server farm is practical. It is the second sentence where I am misquoted. Not only did I not say it, it doesn’t even make sense. In fact, I believe I was saying just the opposite which is, (as I’ve said here before), the huge volume of records produced by an enterprise requires more than one Records Center.
Later in the article I was also quoted as saying:
“If you implement SharePoint, from the very beginning you have to have a records manager involved, providing a taxonomy and policy. Otherwise, it will be chaos.”
This is an issue with context. I probably said something close to this because I believe it is true. The difference is I believe it is true for any ECM solution. If an organization is implementing a new ECM solution, a qualified records manager must be involved from the first day of the project or the organization will never fully manage their content properly. This is true for SharePoint just as it is true for Documentum, OpenText or any other ECM solution available today.
AIIM is a good organization and the annual Buyer’s Guide can be a very useful resource if an organization is planning to implement an ECM solution. I just wish they would be more careful vetting some of the articles they publish.
As part of a recent industry presentation I did, I created a ‘wishlist’ of records management functionality I hope to see included in Office 14 SharePoint when it’s released at the end of the year. This list is by no means comprehensive and the inclusion of these features would not necessarily mean Office 14 SharePoint is a perfect records management solution. (Conversely, if functionality on this list is not part of Office 14, that won’t necessarily mean it’s an insufficient solution.)
Anyway, here’s what I came up with:
- Mulit-level file plan
- Unique expiration and disposition throughout each level of the file plan
- Significantly enhanced email records functionality (with Outlook client add-on)
- Expunge functionality
- Hierarchical file plan representation
- Out-of-the-box metadata based classification
- Access to records from document workspaces
- Unique and persistent record identifiers
- E-discovery beyond the Records Center
What do you think? Have I left anything out?