Need to develop a RK Implementation Plan for TBS? Follow this simple approach!

If you’re part of an information management (IM) or recordkeeping (RK) team in the GC, then you were likely relieved to find out that the Treasury Board Secretariat (TBS) has made a decision to extend the Recordkeeping Directive compliance deadline by one year, or to March 31, 2015.

However, in lieu of this much needed pushback, large Departments and Agencies were recently asked by TBS to submit “Recordkeeping Implementation Plans by July 31, 2012” (source: TBS. “Directive on Recordkeeping: Extension of Compliance.” Email to 1 June 2012.).

So if you’re like the IM consultants at Systemscope, you and/or your team has probably been asking yourselves a few questions, such as: “what is TBS really looking for here?” and “what’s the best way to develop a RK Implementation Plan?”.

To answer these questions we’ve come up with a simple approach to aid clients with the development of their plan. This approach will allow you to create an overarching plan, using TBS’ RK Assessment Tool as a foundational piece, providing TBS with the level of detail they want to see. So, if your Department or Agency has yet to produce a plan or is looking for clarification, follow these suggested steps:

    1. Fill out the TBS RK Assessment Tool: (link available only to GC employees). Gather a few stakeholders around a table (from IM, RK, and IT), get yourselves set up with some coffee or tea and take a sweep through the RK Assessment Tool. Identify the level you believe your department is at (remember you’re grading yourself for the level of compliance in paper AND electronic formats), and write down some notes as to why you graded yourselves at that level so that when you look back, you’ll have some context – which will speed up the process of the following steps.
    2. Map your initiatives to each assessment criteria and identify gaps. Once you feel satisfied that you have filled out the RK Assessment Tool to the best of your ability – without dwelling over it too much – go back through the Assessment Tool with the same group of stakeholders, and determine what initiatives (either complete, ongoing or planned) are necessary in order to comply by 2015, or reach level 3 in the Assessment Tool. Also be sure to identify any gaps and then consider initiatives that need to be developed and completed in order to be compliant in that area.
    3. For each initiative develop a description. When you’re done mapping and identifying initiatives, create a description (like the one below) for each initiative. Divvy-up the tasks among your stakeholders to ensure that the person who knows the most about any given initiative is the one to complete the description. TBS has explained that they expect to see, “key deliverables, resources, milestones, and timelines” in your completed plan, and this step will get you there (source: TBS. “Directive on Recordkeeping: Extension of Compliance.” Email to 1 June 2012.).
Initiative [title of initiative]
Description [provide a brief description of the initiative – purpose, objectives, etc.]
Reference [include each assessment criteria that applies to this initiative, from the RK Assessment Tool, as a reminder of the TBS compliance requirements]
Outcome [describe the end state – what will be accomplished when this initiative is complete?]
Deliverables (outputs) [list the expected deliverables associated with this initiative]
Owner [identify the owner – person or group]
Timeframe (Duration) [identify the projected start and end dates]
Milestones [define milestones as they apply]
Dependencies [list any initiatives that need to be completed in order to complete this initiative]
Risk(s) [consider any risks that could arise and delay or inhibit the success of this initiative]
Cost [include this if it has been determined]
    1. Once you have filled out your initiative descriptions, create a roadmap. We suggest using Microsoft Visio for this step, but if you do not have access to the software, Microsoft Word or PowerPoint should do the trick. On the roadmap, plot your planned initiatives, the order in which you plan to take them on, and an overall list of outcomes (consider: what will the outcome state be when everything is complete? where will you be?). Remember to consider dependencies on other initiatives (or in other words what needs to get done before the next initiative can happen).
RK Implementation Plan Roadmap
  1. Package it all up and hit the “send” button! Provide a brief introduction / summary of your plan, attach your roadmap and initiative descriptions and email it all to the IM-GI mailbox ( by July 31, 2012. Our suggested package for TBS includes:
      • IM and RK strategic goals and vision
      • MS Excel Radar Chart showing current level of maturity (from your TBS RK Assessment Tool results)
    RKI Maturity Chart
    • Roadmap
    • Initiative descriptions
    • Annex – list of initiatives mapped to maturity (if desired)

According to TBS, “once the Recordkeeping Implementation Plans are received, CIOB will review the plans and provide written feedback and schedule fact-to-face meetings with interested departments in order to discuss the feedback, respond to questions, and provide any additional support required” (source: TBS. “Directive on Recordkeeping: Extension of Compliance.” Email to 1 June 2012.)

Virgina Start is a consultant in Systemscope’s Enterprise Information Practice.


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