The role of records management in mitigating risks: A case study of National Water and Sewerage Corporation, Mbarara
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The study aimed at assessing the role of records management in risk mitigation: A case study of National Water and Sewerage Corporation, Mbarara Branch. The objectives of the study were to; establish the nature and type of risks to which NWSC is exposed, identify the records generated and their roles in business activities, examine extent to which records management is emphasised within NWSC as a tool to managing risk and its role in risk mitigation and make recommendations to enhance current records management practices to support the function of risk management. The study employed a case study research design while adopting a qualitative research approach in the collection of data. Purposive sampling was used to select 3 records personnel, 1 operations manager, and 1 secretary. Data was collected using interviews and observation methods. The study findings revealed that there are enormous risks that arise as a result of inadequate records management in National Water and Sewerage Corporation which include; loss or misplacement of records, long retrieval times affecting management decision-making, inadequate information which affects quality of decisions, dissatisfied customer due to delayed retrieval of customer records and exposure to acts of fraud perpetrated through weak record keeping systems. The study established that the different types of records managed at NWSC, Mbarara Branch were; cartographic records, plans, architecture drawings, text records in files, photographic records, audio-visual records and the contract records among others. These exist in paper form, electronic form and artifacts. The study established that the lack comprehensive professionally drawn records management programme, lack formal training and the required knowledge in records management and the state of disaster management for records, records management in NWSC is inadequate and that it requires strengthening to sufficiently support risk management. The study recommended computerisation of the records management processes, staff training in records management, establishment of a formal records management programme, centralisation of records management, improvement of records security and disaster management, appraisal of records to prevent accumulation of unnecessary records.