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3 Tips to Ensure KORA Compliance

There has been a spotlight on the Kansas Open Records Act (KORA) in the media lately, largely due to recent violations. Under KORA, any individual can request public records from government bodies. If all requested records are not provided within in a specific timeframe, these organizations are subject to significant repercussions. This is merely one example of a ‘sunshine law’. The purpose of sunshine laws is to provide transparency into government agencies by giving the public access to local government proceedings.

Because of the possibility of unexpected records requests, information management professionals need to pay close attention to the location and lifecycle of all content that may become a record, otherwise they put their organization at risk of legal ramifications. This can be a time consuming and tedious task for small organizations, let alone those with a large record count. 

The three tips below can help your organization get on track with KORA compliance:

1. Define Records Management Initiatives in your Organization

While many records managers may abide by information management processes, getting end-users to comply with these procedures can be a struggle. The average end-user tends to be more focused on their own workflow rather than the lifecycle of the document in use. This disconnect can put an organization at risk of being non-compliant with set regulations. The first step to successful records management is to analyze these types of hurdles and compose a plan to combat them. 

2. Know and Implement Retention Schedules

Retention schedules vary depending on types of documents and their regulations. It is important to have accurate information regarding these schedules in order to implement them correctly. In big organizations, keeping track of numerous retention periods can be intimidating. Fortunately, ECM software can assist in automating the retention and disposition process. This can greatly reduce the manual workload for records managers as well as ensure compliance with open records law.

3. Prioritize e-Discovery Methods

The inability to search and find records can pose a problem in responding to KORA requests. If a government entity receives a request for all records pertaining to a certain subject, they are obligated to locate and present those records in a timely fashion. Proper indexing and immediate retrieval of records can make this a seamless process. This is where federated records management comes in to play. By using a single dashboard with a unified search experience, end-users can quickly search and locate records.

Shining Light on Your Records

The key to complying with open records laws is to keep in mind the public’s right to access certain records.  Using these tips can help prepare for an unexpected KORA request and ensure civil laws are not broken.  Although actions to achieve regulatory compliance with records laws can seem overly complicated, creating a plan and knowing your organization’s options is a helpful start.  Stay ahead of the chaos and stay compliant!

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3 Tips to Ensure KORA Compliance

There has been a spotlight on the Kansas Open Records Act (KORA) in the media lately, largely due to recent violations. Under KORA, any individual can request public records from government bodies. If all requested records are not provided within in a specific timeframe, these organizations are subject to significant repercussions. This is merely one example of a ‘sunshine law’. The purpose of sunshine laws is to provide transparency into government agencies by giving the public access to local government proceedings.

Creating a Retention Schedule that Works

Creating a usable, automated, and simple file plan is an important part of ensuring records are managed in a consistent manner and that you are protected from legal risks, such as failure to disclose information during a discovery proceeding or the unauthorized leakage of information. The first step in the process is creating a retention schedule, which outlines how long records are kept in accordance with the organization’s obligations and the law.

How to Manage Your Sprawling Content

Sprawling content, the spread of content across multiple repositories, has been a thorn in the side of records managers since the dawn of document management. Consolidation of repositories, which began in the early 2000s, at first looked to be the solution. However, it ended up highlighting the problems of content sprawl due to the high costs of consolidation as well as need for records managers to manage multiple file plans. Federated records management offers a solution to these problems but doesn’t offer the same locked-down approach with regards to regulation that consolidation can. Consolidation of repositories and federated records management both have pros and cons and, depending on your organization’s content management processes and repositories, one can be more beneficial than the other in the long term.