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Original Research

Investigating electronic records management and compliance with regulatory requirements in a South African university

M.E. Kyobe, P. Molai, T. Salie

SA Journal of Information Management; Vol 11, No 1 (2009), . doi: 10.4102/sajim.v11i1.396

Submitted: 12 February 2009
Published:  12 February 2009


This study investigated the extent to which academics and students at a leading University in South Africa managed electronic records in accordance with good practices and regulatory requirements. Literature on electronic records management (ERM) and regulatory compliance was synthesised to create a framework for effective records management. A survey was then conducted to test this framework with 17 academics, 97 students and two technical staff from five faculties. The results revealed several incidents of poor records management and lack of compliance with regulations. Many academics and students were unaware of legislative requirements and penalties. They did not backup or archive records regularly and where this was done, there were no standard procedures followed, which resulted in the adoption of distinct approaches to record keeping. Furthermore, appropriate programmes for educating users on ERM did not exist and academics had not established collaborative initiatives with other nonacademics (e.g. internal auditors and legal experts) to ensure effective ERM. It was also surprising to find that non-computing academics and students managed system security risks better than their computing counterparts. Useful recommendations and the way forward are provided.

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Author affiliations

M.E. Kyobe, Department of Information Systems University of Cape Town Cape Town , South Africa
P. Molai, Department of Information Systems University of Cape Town Cape Town , South Africa
T. Salie, Department of Information Systems University of Cape Town Cape Town , South Africa



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ISSN: 2078-1865 (print) | ISSN: 1560-683X (online)

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