A Records Management Questionnaire

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The Federal Information and Records Managers (FIRM) Council Electronic Records Standards Committee A Records Management Questionnaire

The following list of questions was developed to assist offices performing evaluations of electronic systems in order to prepare the SF115, Request for Disposition Authority for submittal to NARA. The questions are not mandatory. Rather they are provided as a guideline to facilitate a dialog among Program Offices, IT organizations, and Records Management officials.

The list is in text form. Users may use the text as the basis for developing a database, a form, a table, or whatever format they find most useful for their current situation.

Many thanks to Ms. Tammy Schartel for developing this questionnaire for the FIRM Councils Electronic Records Standards Committee.

We hope you find this guideline useful. In the spirit of continuous improvement, feel free to provide questions or comments to the FIRM Council Bulletin Board by replying to this message.

1. What is the name of the system (both acronym and full)? 2. What is the name of the program office responsible for this system? 3. Name other offices in your organization that use this system. 4. Who is the system administrator? 5. What is the program/legal authority for the creation of the system? 6. What is the purpose of the system? 7. What are the source(s) of input for this system? 8. What are the applications this system supports (how are the data manipulated once they have been input)? 9. What are the outputs from this system? 10. What is the primary key/unit of analysis for each file (one record is created for each . . .)? 11. Supply the record layout and codes for the files in the system. 12. What documentation is available for this system? 13. What are the inclusive dates for the file(s)? 14. What are the inclusive dates for the subjects of these files? 15. Are the records in this system necessary to protect the rights or interests of the Government or individuals affected by the Government (vital records)? If yes, please explain and provide offsite storage plans to include where duplicated in electronic form. 16. Are there any restrictions on the release to the public of the data? If yes, please cite the authority for those restrictions. If yes, can any segregable portions of the file be released or does the system produce a public use version of the data? 17. Would data or outputs from this system be likely subjects of Freedom of Information Act Requests? 18. Would portions of the data be lost or distorted upon conversion to flat file format (ASCII or EBCDIC)? 19. Are any codes used during input? If yes, please provide documentation to decipher the codes. 20. Please explain the update and backup process for this system. 21. What hardware is used for this system? 22. What software is used for this system? 23. Does the system have a privacy act listing? 24. Recommended disposition for electronic data. 25. Recommended disposition for outputs. 26. Recommended disposition for input data sources. 27. Recommended disposition for system documentation. 28. Provide a plan for migration of data when software is updated or changed.

-- Anonymous, August 21, 2000

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