The first centrally administered records management program at Kennesaw State University grew out of the need to address specific challenges facing the management of physical records in the early 2000's.
Before then, each separate office and department of the University was responsible for appraising, retaining, and disposing of its own records. Inactive paper records were boxed and stored for periods of time as recommended by retention schedules prepared by USG Board of Regents. A campus storage building operated by Facilities served as a "records center," and the disposal of records by shredding was a free service offered by the Georgia Board Authority.
In time the onsite "records center" was shut down and the free shredding service came to an end. As boxes of records began to accumulate, concerns grew over the cost of storage space, potential exposure to legal and regulatory risk, failure to comply with USG policy, and loss of valuable archival documents.
To address this situation, in 2004 Dr. Randy Hinds established the Department of Archives and Records Management under the leadership of Dr. Tamara Livingston. The dual mission of the unit was to develop a repository for preserving University records of historical value (Archives) and to assist departments in managing their inactive paper records (Records Management).
First, a records management vendor was contracted to provide secure storage and destruction services. Second, a series of workshops and tutorials were developed to educate records owners and custodians about their responsibilities. Third, the concept of "records" was broadened to include all formats - electronic, audio, video, microfilm, photographic. The term "information" helps reinforce this idea.
Moving into the future, the Office of Records and Information Management will continue to promote an inclusive and comprehensive approach to information governance. The vision is to move toward electronic recordkeeping systems that are capable of managing records and information throughout their lifecycle and of providing proof of compliance with internal policies and procedures.