Crossmore Consulting offer a wide range of services to enable their clients to challenge existing methods, promote best practice and increase organisational efficiency. These include (but are not limited to,) the following:
Records are a valuable asset containing the corporate memory of an organisation and they need to be protected, managed and resourced like any other asset. A Records Health Check is one of Crossmore Consulting’s main tools as it provides an audit of current records management systems and processes against best practice, creating a roadmap to assist an organisation to define how it can improve the management of its records. In summary, it is a stepping stone for an organisation on its journey to improve regulatory compliance, increase business efficiency and enhance its corporate image.
Every organisation should develop a Records Management Strategy to ensure that it has a uniform, systematic and planned approach to Records Management covering records from their creation to their disposal. We can work with you in designing and developing this strategy, adhering to best practice and providing your organisation with a roadmap enabling you to deliver quality services. This will in turn ensure the creation and management of authentic, trustworthy, complete, secure and working records, supporting your functions and activities.
Every organisation needs a Policy which all staff can access for advice and guidance in their day to day roles of creating and managing records. A Records Management Policy is a statement of the standard of service that clients can expect from an organisation and we can assist you in developing a Policy based on current legal, regulatory and professional best practice. Records Management Procedures are also required to promote good practices and raise awareness in record keeping, deal with file management issues, including naming conventions, storage and retrieval, back-ups, access, security, tracking and disposal etc. Crossmore Consulting can help you develop this consistent approach to meet your commitment to creating, retaining and managing your records.
It is a fundamental business requirement that on-going records are retained for a minimum period of time for legal, operational and compliance reasons. The length of time will depend on the type of record set against the organisation’s business functions. A Retention Schedule is therefore an essential element of good Records Management practice and a requirement for proper implementation of the Data Protection Acts of 1988 and 2003. Common sense alone would decree that records, whether paper or digital, cannot all be retained indefinitely and we can assist an organisation in putting in place a system to ensure that records are only retained for as long as legally and operationally necessary. We prepare a schedule by carrying out an Audit of current record holdings, exploring any relevant legislative requirements for retention and examining professional industry guidelines and good practice.
Many companies undertake Shredding, Scanning and Physical Storage in house. It is recognised however that this is not appropriate or favoured by all companies. There is also significant external expertise available and Crossmore Consulting has partnerships with suppliers of these services and can give advice on interacting with these external providers. In addition we can assess the viability of carrying out these functions in house to ensure a value for money approach by an organisation. Legislative demands in particular on Scanning can be a minefield to ensure that evidential weight is placed on digitised records. Contact us if you are looking at reviewing your approach to Shredding, Scanning or Physical Document Storage.
Certain pieces of legislation have implications with regards to Records Management for organisations. A number of these are applicable to many organisations such as Data Protection, Freedom of Information, Safety, Health and Welfare, Employment and Equality Legislation, Finance, WEEE Directive etc, while others would be organisation specific such as legislation for Child Care, Disability, Charities, Adoption etc. We can assist you in reviewing your industry appropriate legislation to help you ensure that you are compliant and not open to fines etc. What we often find is that staff are often generally familiar with the legislation influences for their operational needs but do not always have a clear understanding of the Records Management demands which could have significant financial consequences.
We have extensive experience in providing cost effective, interactive training in Records Management which can be tailored to meet the needs of an individual or organisation at an external training venue or in house. Your company may already have a Records Management Policy and a Retention Schedule, but how many people are aware of them and how many are actually comfortable with applying them? Do you need advice on Disaster Planning, Vital Records, File Classification, Legislation, Physical Storage etc? We will develop a programme at the appropriate level to address your concerns and create more in house expertise. If you are interested in holding a training day. Please Contact Us.
We are now offering a full range of training on the new Freedom of Information Act 2014 in association with Arcline and AllOne limited under the framework agreement established by the Office of Government Procurement. As a former FOI Implementation Manager, FOI Officer and Decision Maker within the Health Service, I am very well placed to offer this training and advice to new and existing organisations that come in under the new FOI legislation.
The 3 main elements of Disaster Planning are Prevention, Preparation and Recovery. Every organisation must give consideration to developing Disaster Planning and Recovery arrangements to facilitate continued trading in the event of a disaster. We can give advice on developing plans to recover documents and ensure a timely return to full operation in the event of unforeseen circumstances. We also work closely with companies who provide comprehensive restoration services in the event of a disaster so that an organisation can recover and successfully reinstate documents, books, photographs and artwork after damage.
Vital records are records essential to the continued existence of an organisation and are recognised as irreplaceable. We can assist you in identifying and protecting your vital records to ensure the continued operation of the organisation in case of disaster. You may be backing up your vital electronic records but what are you doing with your vital physical records? This type of record is probably the only record that you should copy? Are you at risk?
A File Plan or Records Classification System is simply a method of classifying records to bring together those with shared characteristics to facilitate filing and retrieval. An examination of filing systems can often reveal signs of overloading, duplication, lack of cross referencing, obsolete correspondence, no tracer system, shortage of equipment, long retrieval times, filing backlogs and an overall ad hoc approach to review and storage. We can step back and challenge existing File Plans and Classification schemes and design new uncomplicated ones for easier access and maintenance.
While many records are stored in electronic systems in an organisation, it is normal to also find a substantial amount of physical records on site. These physical records clearly need to be organised, protected and managed in appropriate accommodation. Over the years this accommodation can come under pressure and inevitably, inefficiencies emerge. We can review your storage arrangements for you, identifying inefficiencies as necessary, but more importantly, pointing to a way forward. Storage space has to be appropriate for the record types and quantities and has to be secure, accessible and safe. We have the expertise to investigate all of these issues and produce a solution to optimise your information storage requirements.
A Survey or Audit is typically an excellent method for getting hard facts about an organisation’s record holdings. It will identify where they are stored, how they are stored and how long they are being retained. Both simple and detailed surveys can be carried out depending on the nature of the project. We can undertake these audits and surveys in an organisation to produce a profile of what records exist and the procedures associated with them. Typically this will involve questionnaires, physical surveys and interviews, and it is also a golden opportunity for an organisation to sell the benefits of Records Management and build support.
Tendering for large contracts can be a daunting business. We can help organisations bridge the skill gap and work through the mountain of documentation that often appears in public tenders. Coming from a background of having sent projects to tender and evaluated returns, we have the skillset to assist your company to answer comprehensively and “push the right buttons” to avail of lucrative tender opportunities. Public Service tendering is all about achieving value for money using the criteria of Most Economically Advantageous Tender. This includes a focus on cost, quality of the product, environmental impact, supplier performance, fitness for purpose and flexibility among other things. Various guidelines and procedures have to be assessed and complied with, clarifications often have to be sought, responses carefully planned and prepared and submitted on time, all in the right format. Let us enhance this process for you.
In addition to the Records Management focus, Crossmore Consulting also provides Business Process Review applications to enable organisations to challenge existing processes which may be in need of streamlining. This can be a much wider, although complementary feature to the Records Management activity, leading to even more efficient and effective business processes in general while ensuring that a continuous improvement ethos is instilled into the organisation.
Companies who are either Moving, Downsizing or Closing their premises face many decisions, not least those with regards to what to do with records which may have accumulated over many years. Moving records is not simply a matter of throwing them in a van and dropping them of at a new premises! On-going business must be supported and legal compliance must be maintained at all times and everything must be carried out in a planned and rational manner. If Downsizing or Closing a premises, even bigger decisions are required with regards to what records do I need to retain and what records can I eliminate? Skilled project management is needed in all instances and Crossmore Consulting can assist and guide you in preparing for these events to ensure you make the correct decisions from both a legal and operational viewpoint.