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02.13.13 >

Issue #3rd Quarter

A Public Record

Call for Nominations for the Sir Rupert Hamer Awards!
For more information please contact or 9348 5659

The Sir Rupert Hamer Records Management Awards are to be held at Queens Hall, Parliament House on Thursday 16 May 2013 from 4:30 to 7:30pm.
We are now accepting nominations for the 2013 Awards.
The Sir Rupert Hamer Records Management Awards recognise achievements in good records management practice within Victorian government Agencies and local Community Archives.
The awards have been presented by the Public Records Advisory Council (PRAC) since 1998. They are named for Sir Rupert Hamer – Premier of Victoria when the Public Records Act was passed in 1973 and when Public Record Office Victoria opened its first office and repository in 1975.
Sir Rupert Hamer had an ongoing interest in public records, records management, government accountability and cultural heritage. His interests have been shared by many government leaders and the Public Records Advisory Council is pleased that the Victorian Premiers are:
  • John Cain, Premier of Victoria 1982 – 1990

  • Joan Kirner, Premier of Victoria 1990 – 1992

  • Jeff Kennett, Premier of Victoria 1992 – 1999

  • Steve Bracks, Premier of Victoria 1999 – 2007

  • John Brumby, Premier of Victoria 2007-2010

Victorian Government Agency category
Awards are made to Victorian Government Agencies for projects that:
  • Significantly improve business efficiency and effectiveness within the agency and/o
  • Ensure a high level of compliance by the agency with government records management policies, regulation and Standards
Nominations can be submitted in four Victorian Government Agency categories:
  • Small Agency
  • Medium Agency
  • Large Agency
  • Regional/Rural Agency

Community Archives categories

There are two categories available for Community Archives nominations:
  • Preservation of records of significance to the local community and the state (open to both Community Archives and Victorian Government Agencies)
  • Providing enhanced records access to the local community
A panel of independent judges from PRAC and key sponsor bodies assess each nomination against the award objectives.

Victorian Electronic Record Strategy- Refresh

For more information about these projects and all things VERS, please contact Cathy Meynell-James, telephone 0419 580 865 or email


VERS had a very busy finish to 2012, consolidating several of the VERS Refresh Projects, and are back in 2013 feeling refreshed and ready to deliver. The major highlights of the previous quarter were:
Structured Data Project – Barbara Reed of Recordkeeping Innovation submitted her final Options Paper and Literature Review on managing ‘Structured Data’ (e.g. databases, websites, spatial data systems). The papers and recommendations have been widely distributed for review, with the aim of developing a Public Record Office Victoria standard in 2013.
Measurement Framework Project
The requirements for this online tool, now referred to as ‘IM3’ (Information Management Maturity Measurement), have been developed and a request for quote to find an appropriate Service Provider is underway. Several Departments have already requested the non-online version of the tool to assist with current IM planning activities.
Future of Information Management Project
VERS has initiated a new cross-departmental ‘visioning’ project with Landell Consulting to think about the issues that will impact information management in government five years from now. You can read more in David Brown’s blog article at
Cathy has also been busy securing executive sponsorship for our main projects, re-positioning the VERS Workbench project and continuing to develop the suite of communication tools with our consultant Jack Walden.
For more information about these projects and all things VERS, please contact Cathy Meynell-James on 0419 580 865 or

Standards & Policy

For more information on Policy, please contact Allison Hunter, on 9348 5708 or

In the standards and policy space, Public Record Office Victoria published a policy on the use of Social Media, and an issues paper on the use of Back-up Technologies for Archiving.
The recordkeeping policy on Social Media was published in November 2012. The issuing of this policy reflects the greater use of social media by agencies, particularly for consultation. The policy states that work related use of social media does create a public record that must be captured. Like all recordkeeping, the effort required reflects the risk.
Public Record Office Victoria published an issues paper on the use of back-up technologies for archiving. This issues paper highlighted the risks of using technologies designed for short term recovery of data for long term retention. The comment period for this issues paper has now closed, and work is in hand to collate the comments and produce a policy.

Product Compliance

For more information on compliance, contact

Four products from four vendors are undergoing Compliance testing at the moment.
RecordPoint achieved full VERS compliance on 26 November for their product RecordPoint for Microsoft Sharepoint v2. IBM FileNet achieved VERS compliance for Specifications 3 to 5 in November 2012 with testing scheduled for Specifications 1 and 2. ELO achieved VERS compliance for Specifications 3 to 5 in December 2012. Oracle are currently undergoing VERS testing for their product Oracle Webcenter Content.

Australian National Data Service Metadata Project

To find out more on the Australian National Data Service Metadata Project, please contact Graham McCusker, on 9348 5615 or

The Australian National Data Service Metadata Project will support the exposure and reuse of Government Archive’s records by replicating collection metadata on Research Data Australia’s website. Research Data Australia is an Internet-based discovery service designed to provide rich connections between data, projects, researchers and institutions, and promote visibility of Australian research data collections in search engines.
Public Record Office Victoria is leading this project, and in partnership with State Records NSW will develop and install software tools in both states allowing collection metadata in a standardised format to be regularly harvested by RDA. The project team includes Julie McCormack, David Fowler, Kazuki Tada, and Graham McCusker from Public Record Office Victoria, Cassie Findlay, Richard Lehane , and Wisanu Promthong from Sate Records NSW and Julia Martin and Xiaobin Shen from Australian National Data Service.

Retention and Disposal

For more information about the review contact Julie McCormack, Acting Senior Manager Government Recordkeeping, on 9348 5630 or

We are continuing to work on a project reviewing our approach and process for authorising records disposal.  Recent activities have included discussing the project and potential new approaches to disposal with our colleagues from other archival institutions at the Recordkeeping Roundtable Reinventing Archival Methods workshop in late November. 

The new Water Industry Functions Retention & Disposal Authority, PROS 12/06, was issued on 3 December 2012 replacing the previous Water Authority RDA PROS 00/01.  This new RDA provides more comprehensive disposal coverage for Water Authorities and Catchment Management Authorities.   
RDA projects that are currently underway include: Department of Premier & Cabinet, Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine, Australian Multicultural Education Service, Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority, Skills (DEECD), Department of Transport and Transport Safety Victoria.

Find out more about current Retention and Disposal Authorities.

For more information about the Disposal program, email or contact Emma Murray, Acting Manager, Appraisal and Documentation on 9348 5646 or

Records Transfers 

For more information on our transfer activities please contact

Recently completed transfers include:

  • Office of Public Prosecutions, Prosecution and Litigation Records
  • Corinella Cemetery trust: Minute Books and Other Trust Records
  • Wannon Water, minutes
  • City of Yarra, minutes
  • Horsham City Council,
  • Yarra Ranges Council
  • Brimbank City Council
  • City of Greater Dandenong
  • Monash City Council
  • City of Melbourne

Transfer projects currently in progress include:

  • 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission: Records of the Commission
  • Department of Treasury and Finance: Correspondence
  • Supreme Court: Jury Records, Divorce, Criminal Case Records
  • Gippsland Water Authority: Letter Books and Plans
  • Heritage Victoria: Slide Collections, Digital and Physical
  • DSE: Historic Records Plans and Pre-emptive Rights Plans
  • County Court: Criminal Presentments and Final Orders
  • Victorian Law Reform Commission: References and Community Law Reform Projects
  • VicTrack: Railway Line Drawings and Plans, Correspondence and Photos
  • Office of the Administrator (SECV): Photographic Collection
  • Victorian Assisted Reproductive Treatment Authority: Donor Linking Records
  • Office of Public Prosecutions, Prosecution and Litigation Records
  • Victorian Commission for Gambling & Liquor Regulation, indexes

Government Services Staff Member of the Quarter:
Graham McCusker

I returned to Public Record Office Victoria in September 2012, to manage the Australian National Data Service Government Archive Metadata Project. This is my second time at Public Record Office Victoria - in 2011 I managed the last six months of the Recordkeeping Standards Project. The Australian National Data Service project will expose metadata about Public Record Office Victoria’s ( and State Records NSW’s) collections to researchers using a national research database maintained by Research Data Australia. The project is partially funded by the Commonwealth Government, is being led by Public Record Office Victoria, and has State Records NSW as an active partner. 
I am also helping (I hope) Michelle Novacco with aspects of the Online Retention and Disposal Application (ORDA) project.

I particularly enjoy working on projects – progress is usually very visible and the sense of achievement when successfully delivered is very satisfying. Working with teams of great people is a frequent bonus.
Between the stints at Public Record Office Victoria, I was at the EPA as a project and training manager for a (SAP) software project. Most of the recent projects I have worked on are relatively small (especially in terms of resources), so the EPA project was an interesting change with large teams of software developers, testers and trainers (the training team peaked at 8 people, and we had an additional 3 technical writers documenting standard operating procedures). During my 8+ years in Australia (I’m a Kiwi), I have also worked on a variety of projects at WorkSafe Victoria, as a fulltime CEO of an Industry Association, and as a journalist/editor/Australasian representative for a UK based media and events organisation. In NZ I built and operated a small service company, after having been involved in technical project and support roles for Telecom NZ’s electronic telephone exchanges. I also managed a touring rock band for about a year in the late '70s.
To keep busy (and keep the bank balance down) I have 4 kids under 42yrs, 4 grandkids under 13yrs, a large whanau (extended family), enjoy travel to interesting and exotic locations, and sometimes pilot light airplanes. 

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