Assessing filing and retrieval of active records at Uganda National Roads Authority
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The effectiveness of public service organizations is audited basing on the ability to file and quickly retrieve the necessary records. Study purpose: This study aimed to assess the filing and retrieval of active records at Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) Registry, so as suggest possible alternatives for improvement in management of active records Study Objectives: the study intended to; establish the current status of active records filing and retrieval in UNRA Registry: find out how active records filing and retrieval are managed at UNRA Registry: identify challenges of active records filing and retrieval in UNRA Registry and: To make suggestions to the best practices in active records filing and retrieval at UNRA. Methods: A cross-sectional study design was applied, using the qualitative approach. The study population included employees in UNRA’s records department who have worked there for at least one year. In-depth interviews and observation approaches were used to collect data. a manual data analysis was used to obtain qualitative information which was presented thematically basing on the study objectives Results: The study finds that UNRA’s records department handles several types of active records, which include payment statements, contract agreements, project proposals request letters from various companies and other correspondences. Both paper-based digitalized filing and retrieval methods are being used, and the common approaches used during filing and retrieval of active records are; arranging documents following the chronology: filing by name of the sender, by the subject matter, or according to the order of activities, and according to the geographical locations where records are obtained. The common filing and retrieval challenges include; inadequate equipment, limited skills, poor interconnectivity of the systems, slow interned network, inadequate storage space, as well as bureaucracies and lack of retrieval rights. Conclusion: Whereas UNRA’s records department embraces the use of both digitalized and paper-based record-keeping systems, the paper-based method takes a lion’s share although not preferred by the records staff. A lot of inconsistencies were identified with the use of digital approaches, and there is a possibility of misappropriating important records of the organization unless the above challenges are addressed.