Open Government Partnership New Zealand National Action Plan 2018-2020
Progress report for: July – September 2020
Commitment 10: Monitoring the effectiveness of public body information management practices
Lead agency: Archives New Zealand (Department of Internal Affairs)
Objective: To make the management of government information more visible and therefore transparent by developing and implementing a monitoring framework that supports public reporting on the effectiveness of information management by central and local government agencies.
Ambition: New Zealanders and public agencies will be able to see the standards for management of government information and the rates of progress central and local government agencies are making towards meeting those standards.
OGP values: Transparency and Accountability
Develop a proposed monitoring framework that reflects the Information and Records Management Standard and includes a suite of consistent and relevant measures to enable public visibility of the effectiveness of agency information management. This could include technology to enable a whole-of-system view of government information holdings and the effectiveness of its management
Start/End dates: July 2018 – December 2018
Communication and engagement: the proposed framework and its potential options will be consulted on with regulated parties and other potential users
Start/End dates: July 2018 – July 2019
Rolling it out. Ensuring that the implemented monitoring activity is useful for, and easily used by, the regulated agencies to improve performance and that a common view of results is available to all stakeholders (including the public)
Start/End dates: April 2019 – June 2021
What we have been doing
- Over the past few months, including during the Covid-19 lockdown, Archives New Zealand has developed an Information Management Maturity Assessment (IMMA) comprised of defined maturity levels and criteria based on the PRA and the Information and records management standard. The maturity assessment will enable public offices to monitor their information management maturity and can assist them to establish targets for expected maturity improvements. It is intended that in time the assessment will also be available to local authorities and other organisations that wish to improve their IM and recordkeeping practices.
- The Maturity Assessment can be used to:
- Compare public sector organisations’ current information management practices with best practice in respect to the PRA and the associated Information and records management standard;
- assess individual organisations current information management maturity levels;
- help organisations identify and guide some of the steps they need to do to improve; and
- inform upcoming Archives audits of public offices
- Archives sought external parties (Public Offices and Local Authorities) to assist in the development and review of the Maturity Assessment.
- The audit programme is part of Archives New Zealand’s leadership role for information management across the government sector under the Public Records Act 2005 (PRA). Audit will support open, transparent and accountable government and help shape the processes, systems and technology that form the government information system.
- The PRA specifies the legislative requirement for Archives New Zealand (Archives NZ) to undertake independent audits of Public Offices. The audit is undertaken in accordance with section 33 of the Act where the Chief Archivist must commission an independent audit of every public office.
- Audit will be a continuous activity i.e. there will be no break in delivery after five years. This will allow more flexibility to tailor when organisations are audited. Archives NZ will begin the roll out of its audit programme to the 1st year cohort of 31 public offices that will begin in October 2020 and go through to June 2021.
- The results of the audit programme will be reported to Parliament under section 35 of the Act, and the audit reports will be publicly available on Archives New Zealand’s website.
- In 2018/2019 the annual survey was reinstated. Five key indicators to measure the overall state of public sector IM were part of the survey design. The indicators would provide a high-level perspective on whether IM within the public sector were improving, deteriorating or remaining stable. The 2019/2020 survey released at the end of June 2020 allows us to start looking at whether those indicators are being met. We acknowledge that the picture is still emerging, and we expect to see improvement occur over successive surveys.
- The key indicators are not the sole measure of the state of public sector IM but they are considered fundamental building blocks for effective IM. The results will be reported on and like the 2018/2019 survey results the raw data will be published on rawdata.govt.nz.
How we are including diverse voices
- Maturity frameworks are widely used by other regulators working with the management of information e.g. the Privacy Maturity Assessment Framework through the Government Chief Privacy Officer (GCPO) and these are included for consideration along with others used in New Zealand and internationally
- The annual survey of Government Recordkeeping has provided a view of information management performance across the sector and informed our audit programme. While public sector agencies serve and represent diverse communities, this programme is not directly engaging with those communities. Findings from survey and audit were published in the Chief Archivist’s Annual Report on the State of Government Recordkeeping (tabled at Parliament). The findings indicated areas of recordkeeping focus that need to be improved upon to support government accountability.
- We engage with concerned members of the public if there are issues of potential breach of compliance with Public Records Act 2005. This engagement helps us to identify issues across the system.
How we are keeping diverse communities informed
- Current updates on the Archives New Zealand website
- Presentations delivered to audiences from IPANZ (Institute of Public Administration New Zealand) and ALGIM (Association of Local Government Information Management)
- Publishing of the Annual Report on the State of Government Recordkeeping.
The Commitment Milestones have now been substantially completed and the project is transitioning to business as usual mode. We will now:
- consider the development of a self-assessment tool to support the delivery of the Self-Assessment continue to engage with advisory groups to review and test development of the assessment and if agreed upon a new tool to deliver the Self-Assessment
- develop and improve communication with the sector through the Archives online channel
- roll out the Maturity Assessment as part of the audit programme been delivered to 31 public offices in the 2020/2021-year audit
- publish the Information Management Maturity Assessment on line mid-late January
Links – Evidence of progress and milestones achieved
- Findings from Regulatory Programme news item
- Open Government Partnership page on the Archives New Zealand website
- Monitoring Framework page on our website
- 28 January 2020 edition of the Dominion Post (and now online on Stuff) contextualising Archives NZ’s role in administering the Public Records Act and regulating government information management: https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/118797967/survey-finds-worrying-holes-in-management-and-accessibility-of-public-records