ESARBICA Journal: Journal of the Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Branch of the International Council on Archives

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Implications of records management policy for the small and medium enterprises sustainability in Raymond Mhlaba municipality in South Africa

Patrick Ajibade, Festus Khayundi


This study examined records management policy (RMP) compliance in South Africa by the small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The paper highlights challenges faced by companies in establishing records management policy, as most companies are not trained to maintain and manage business records. This is one of the major reasons as to why there is a need for a regulatory framework and policy to guide firms on the importance of maintaining records of business information that are generated by companies. The ability to develop standard RMP compliance will improve Business intelligence (BI) gathering and ensure that firms comply with standard records management practices that promote accountability and assist revenue agencies to monitor tax compliances. An exploratory study was conducted, and a qualitative approach was adopted. A purposive sampling technique was used to sample managers responsible for SMMEs in Raymond Mhlaba Municipality, and data were collected through interviews and observations. The findings revealed that the existing policy and regulatory framework did not address small firm’s RMP compliance, businesses lack RM skills to implement RM policy, they did not have a standard to guide their RM practices, policies were not tailor-made to suit the unique needs of the SMMEs’ RM practices, there was no RMP awareness and training to enable the companies to comply and monitoring mechanisms were not available to measure the firms RM practices. The study recommended training that would enable firms to guide their RM practices; government should establish legal framework that would allow them to monitor compliance with standards, which allows firms to evaluate their RMP, develop RM practices and improve compliance for a sustainable enterprise.

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