Managing government information

Resources and guidance related to Government of Alberta information management.

Active records services

Records management services and processes that support day-to-day business operations and decision making, including:

  • file folder maintenance
  • document preparation and filing
  • access requests and request tracking
  • file manual maintenance
  • annual file room cleanup
  • file room orientation

Detailed information on active records services provided to Government of Alberta clients is available through the Service Catalogue (login required).

Alberta Records Management Committee (ARMC) circulars

The ARMC provides direction to government organizations on the records management program through the following circulars:

Classification

Classification scheme development

  • detailed information on classification development services provided to Government of Alberta clients is available through the Service Catalogue (login required)

Business Classification Scheme (1.0 MB)

  • describes 10 functions that deal with the common record-keeping activities found throughout the Government of Alberta

Content management

Document Naming Conventions (0.4 MB)

  • outlines the recommended naming conventions for documents

Information Lifecycle (0.06 MB)

  • a visual representation of the stages of information management lifecycle
  • Government of Alberta policies, processes, guidelines, and procedures must be followed to effectively manage information at each stage of its lifecycle

Information Management Planning (1.0 MB)

  • intended for those responsible for information management within Government of Alberta ministries
  • helps to assess the current state of information management in a ministry
  • aids in developing ministry information management plans that align with the Information Management Strategy

Email management

The tip sheets and guides below will help you quickly and effectively manage the Outlook environment through automation and preferred practices.

Forms management

The Information Management Branch is responsible for managing the design, development, maintenance, storage and distribution of an inventory of electronic and paper forms used by both the Government of Alberta and the general public.

Detailed information on the forms management services provided to Government of Alberta clients is available through the Service Catalogue (login required).

Government reorganization

The senior records officer is responsible for completing these transfers.

Managing Information During a Government Reorganization (0.2 MB)

  • lists information management activities to complete following an election or a government reorganization

Records Schedule Reconciliation Instructions (0.4 MB)

  • details instructions for transferring approved, cancelled, expired and draft records schedules, and for deleting draft records schedules that are no longer required

Imaging management

The Information Management Branch is responsible for:

  • creating and maintaining a list of vendors who provide digitization services
  • offering advisory services on digitization best practices
  • providing subject matter expertise for digitization projects

Detailed information on imaging management services provided to Government of Alberta clients, such as document digitization or microform conversion, is available through the Service Catalogue (login required).

Inactive records storage

The Information Management Branch oversees the storage and management of inactive records. Inactive records are records that are no longer needed to support day-to-day operations, and are maintained in secure off-site locations. All stored government information must be retained until it can either be destroyed or sent to the Provincial Archives of Alberta.

Detailed information on inactive records storage services provided to Government of Alberta clients is available through the Service Catalogue (login required).

Records in ministers’ offices

The nature of information found in ministers’ offices requires strong foundational guidelines to protect it from security and privacy risks.

Managing Records in Ministers’ Offices Guideline (0.6 MB)

  • offers specific guidance for managing the information produced and used in ministers’ and deputy ministers’ offices

Managing Records in Ministers’ Offices Presentation (0.5 MB)

  • details information on records management and the FOIP Act, focusing on ministers’ and deputy ministers’ offices

Records retention and disposition schedules

Guidance

The Information Management Branch provides advice to ministries on the development of all records retention and disposition schedules, and secretariat support to the Alberta Records Management Committee (ARMC).

Detailed information on schedule development services provided to Government of Alberta clients is available through the Service Catalogue (login required).

Developing Records Retention and Disposition Schedules (1.4 MB)

  • offers guidance on the Government of Alberta’s approach to scheduling and techniques for developing high quality schedules

Preparation of Records Schedules for the Disposition of Imaged Source Records (0.6 MB)

  • offers guidance on the management of source documents that have been converted into a digital format, since older records schedules may not provide guidelines for disposing scanned records

Enterprise-wide schedules

These schedules can be used by all Government of Alberta ministries, agencies, boards and commissions, with the following exceptions:

  1. Salvageable Damaged Records: ARMC approval is required before a government organization can use this schedule to destroy records.
  2. Unsalvageable Damaged Records: ARMC approval is required to dispose of unsalvageable records that are not contaminated.

Administrative Records Disposition Authority (ARDA) - 1986/050/A017 (0.8 MB)

  • may be used as a records retention and disposition schedule for common administrative records in Alberta Government ministries and agencies

Backup Systems – 2003/043-A001 (0.01 MB)

  • provides a common approach to backups for all ministries, agencies, boards and commissions of the Government of Alberta
  • provides a legal disposition authority to dispose of the records associated with the backup process, and the content of the backups

Civil Litigation – 1982/223-A2 (0.1 MB)

  • used for records relating to Legal Services Division’s legal and strategic activities across the Government of Alberta

Ministers' Offices – 2002/041 (0.01 MB)

  • used for ministry and cabinet records that are generated or received by ministers in their capacity as ministers of the crown

Salvageable Damaged Records – 2012/005 (0.01 MB)

  • used for records that have been physically damaged but are either not contaminated or have contamination that can be mitigated (such as mould caused by clean water) and restored to usefulness

Transitory Records – 1995/007-A001 (0.01 MB)

  • used to delegate authority to destroy or delete transitory records to every Government of Alberta employee
  • transitory records containing sensitive or confidential information must be securely destroyed or deleted

Unsalvageable Damaged Records – 2011/002-A001 (0.01 MB)

  • used for records that have been damaged (for example: harmed, contaminated or spoiled) and cannot be reasonably salvaged or restored to usefulness

Senior records officers

A senior records officer (SRO) is responsible for implementing the records management program in each ministry, agency, board and commission. A list of contact information for each SRO (0.1 MB), listed by organization, is maintained by the Information Management Branch.

Supporting applications

The Information Management Branch administers the following applications to support the delivery of information management services to government clients (login required):

Forms Client Relationship Management (CRM)

  • manages the forms management process, from client request through the design, development, testing, reviewing and publishing stages

Government of Alberta Central Forms Repository (CFR)

  • provides a restricted access point to internal government forms for employees, contractors and agents of the Government of Alberta

Inactive Records Information System (IRIS)

  • assists Government of Alberta organizations with moving inactive records to the Alberta Records Centre for storage or direct final disposition

Online Records Retrieval System (ORRS)

  • assists Government of Alberta organizations with requesting inactive records from the Alberta Records Centre

Records Scheduling System (RSS)

  • facilitates the development, review, appraisal, approval and amendment of records retention and disposition schedules

Transfers and disposition

The Information Management Branch supports the systematic and controlled disposal of the Government of Alberta’s information assets, including:

  • facilitating destruction of paper or electronic records
  • transferring records to the Provincial Archives of Alberta for preservation
  • suspending disposal in response to legal holds

Detailed information on transfer and disposition services provided to Government of Alberta clients is available through the Service Catalogue (login required).

Official and Transitory Records: A Guide for Government of Alberta Employees (0.4 MB)

  • guides individuals in the Government of Alberta to identify records, and determine when to retain valuable information assets and when to dispose of obsolete information

Official and Transitory Records Flowchart (0.1 MB)

  • offers a simple visual reference for individuals trying to categorize records as official or transitory

Shared Drive Document Deletion or Archive Procedure (0.3 MB)

  • details the disposition process used by Service Alberta personnel for documents stored on shared drives
  • accessible for Government of Alberta employees only

SharePoint Document Deletion or Archive Procedure (0.3 MB)

  • details the disposition process used by Service Alberta personnel for documents stored on SharePoint
  • accessible for Government of Alberta employees only

Vital records

Use these resources to assist in the development of vital records programs that support business continuity planning in the Government of Alberta.

Identifying Potential Vital Records (0.2 MB)

  • describes 5 main categories of vital records to consider

Vital Records Coordinator Role: Potential Responsibilities (0.2 MB)

  • outlines tasks a vital records coordinator may be asked to participate in or organize

Vital Records Coordinator’s Contacts (0.1 MB)

  • provides a template to collect relevant business continuity contact information

Vital Records Inventory, Part 1: High-Level Organization Summary (0.1 MB)

  • provides a template to identify vital records that support critical, vital, necessary and desired services

Vital Records Inventory, Part 2: Detailed Records Information (0.2 MB)

  • provides a template to detail the series title, use and medium of the vital records identified in Vital Records Inventory, Part 1

Contact Information Management Branch

For further details or inquiries about the Government of Alberta’s information management program and services, please contact sa.informationmanagement@gov.ab.ca.