The biennial Archives and Records Management Survey is live!
By Veronica Martzahl
On Friday, September 4, 2020, state archivists received a series of surveys that compose the FY2020 ARM Survey. Respondents also received a PDF copy their state or territory’s FY2018 completed survey as a reference. A separate, slimmed down survey for Records Management Only programs has been sent out in the hopes increasing participation in this sector.
This year we are using a new survey tool called SoGo Survey. Also, the survey is broken down the into shorter parts. Respondents do not have to complete each part at one time but can save and return to the survey later. They can also forward the survey link to someone else for their input and they can enter their responses and save their progress. Some fields will also be pre-filled based on answers from the FY2018 surveys. Additionally, blank copies of the survey instruments are posted to the CoSA website.
Each survey will cover:
- Survey 1 is basic institutional data, fiscal information, and staffing information
- Survey 2.1 is just the pre-filled Authority, Resources and Activities for Executive and Legislative offices, so that should be a quick review and you’re done.
- Survey 2.2 continues the Judicial and Local Government pre-filled Authority, Resources and Activities, and adds as questions on Archives and Records Center holdings and Arrangement and Description. The Judicial and Local Government sections should be quick, but the rest may take a bit longer.
- Survey 3 is Reference use in Archives and Records Management Program, Communication and social media and Archival impact. There are some new questions here, especially around RM reference and support activities. Obviously when it comes to reporting out on this section in the upcoming report, I will be providing a lot of contextualization of the numbers in light of the pandemic which will undoubtedly upend these responses.
- Survey 4 is Emergency preparedness, response, and recovery. Not surprisingly, here we have some new questions on your institution’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Finally survey 5 covers SHRAB activities with some overlap into similar activities that may be carried out by your institution as well, such as regrant programs that we often associate with SHRABs, but maybe your institution sponsors them instead.
In late September/early October there will be open meetings to discuss any questions or provide feedback as you are working on the surveys.
The surveys will be due October 31st. It is an aggressive timeframe, especially with elections coming up, but hopefully having the shorter surveys with pre-filled fields will make this more doable. The final compiled report is anticipated early in 2021.