Here at QSA, an ongoing discussion we have is about how profoundly things have changed in the records and information landscape over the last couple of decades. More digital, less paper, decentralised recordkeeping, autonomy over the management of your own ‘stuff’, it’s all happening.
One area that’s really feeling the impact of this is machinery of government changes – MOG changes for short. In paper-heavy times, it was somewhat easier (although very labour intensive) to be able to literally pick up the records that were to be transferred to another agency and move them.
This is a fairly simplistic overview of a complicated process, but the act of picking up a physical ‘thing’ and moving it somewhere lets you feel like you’ve completed the task.
In a hybrid world (which is how we all operate now), things are significantly more complicated. Not only do we still have to do the heavy lifting, we also have to find, pick up and move digital records and information.
If you’re faced with a MOG project soon, we kindly offer you some words of wisdom:
TALK to people.
- Connect with the agency you’re ‘mogging’ in to, talk to business areas to get a feel for the types of records and information they make and where they keep it, get to know the systems and applications that your agency uses, become a part of technology discussions at a higher level.
- Dispose of any records and information that you’re allowed to before the MOG happens – this means you’ll have less to physically transfer.
- Start off by targeting any high volume-low retention areas of the business as these will probably give you more bang for your buck.
- Plan as much as you can before the MOG happens.
- Decide how the transfer will look, map out the logistics of exactly how records and information in systems will be migrated and consider time frames for everything (including approvals).
- Find as much as you can about any previous MOGs your agency has been through.
Look for agreements, plans or communications that give you an idea of what worked (or didn’t) last time.
- You might also find some great wording for your own agreements, or past contacts who might be able to give you a hand.
- Relax and make the most of a project like this. It’s a great opportunity to explore areas of the agency you might not know much about it and a good chance to have a (lawful) clean out.
To try and make things easier, we also simplified our MOG advice too. We’d love to hear what you think about it. You can leave a comment on this blog or send us an email to let us know what you think! Would you like more advice like this?