RIMtech’s EDRMS Implementation Methodology®

EDRMS projects have many moving parts, and can quickly devolve into separate RIM and IT projects if not governed properly. RIMtech’s 12-step EDRMS Implementation Methodology© delivers the structure, rigor, and discipline needed for implementation success, regardless of the technology used or the particular corporate RIM culture. Following this methodology removes the risk of EDRMS project failure. Below is RIMtech’s recommended EDRMS Implementation Methodology. Each of three stages has four constituent steps as shown below:

Methodology Concept Diagram.jpg
Methodology Diagram.jpg

Note that 8 of the 12 steps have little to do with the software technology itself – they are focused on the changes the organization needs to make so that the technology will be successfully adopted. Stage 1 is focused on the organizational and cultural changes needed to ensure users adopt and embrace the technology. Stage 2 is preparing for the software. The third stage is the actual technology implementation, which is based on the changes in procedure that preceded it.

Overall, the methodology consists of:

  1. The “science” of electronic recordkeeping is embodied in the methodology. The terms, concepts, and mechanics of electronic recordkeeping.

  2. A comprehensive roadmap of consecutive, well-defined steps which, when carried out properly, will ensure the success of an EDRMS system.

  3. A series of prescribed measurement metrics (performance measures)

  4. A series of supporting tools (spreadsheets) used to apply the methodology

  5. A comprehensive series of definitions of new terms and concepts

Success Diagram.jpg
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There are three measures that tell us if an EDRMS project is successful/healthy (or not):


Qualification Rate. What percentage of inbound email (email stream) we should expect as declared records. Typically measured annually. Typically 5% (email), 95% (Direct).

Declaration Rate. Of those we expected to be declared (qualification), what percentage were declared as records? Must be measured daily. A typically acceptable rate would be 75% or higher.

Classification Accuracy Rate. Of all the documents declared as records, what percentage are known to be correctly classified (i.e. they have the correct retention rule assigned)? Must be measured daily. Must be at least 85% at all times, or disposition is impossible.

The first metric is impossible to measure inside SharePoint itself, as it is a measure of the user’s judgement. The latter two measures are easily carried out in SharePoint as simple queries. Below is a diagram of a hypothetical “dashboard” of the three measures. Qualification Rate and Declaration Rate are split into two streams, email and Direct (creating documents).

The most lethal of the three is the Classification Accuracy Rate. It is in essence a measure of quality of the records. Misclassified records would be destroyed either too late, or too early. Hence, this is the make-it-or-break-it EDRMS measure.

We must consistently and persistently track these three measures. The Classification Accuracy Rate must never be allowed to slip below the target rate. Most of the efforts to support this rate will be pre-implementation, and they include:

  1. Making the retention schedule software-ready.

  2. Tracking Case vs. Admin categories and delivering up-to-date categories for the case categories that people are classifying against.

  3. Delivering motivational impetus to users to take greater care, via the EAP (Enterprise Adoption Plan).

  4. Use of RBR (Rules-Based Recordkeeping) or RRM (Replication Records Management) to automate the declaration and classification of documents.

  5. Suitable ECM architecture, so people put the right documents in the right places.

The EDRMS Administrator must measure and report on the declaration rate and classification accuracy rate each every working day, so problems can be spotted early and a remediation plan put into place before they fall into an unacceptable range.

These are the core Key Performance Indicators that must be measured.

Measures Diagram.jpg

The relationship between the retention schedule, the ECM Architecture, and RBR Rules 


The artifacts used to define  and track system configuration.

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Metadata Map

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The process used to define Metadata.

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Using RBR to automate recordkeeping.

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RBR Rules Diagram.jpg

RBR Rules.