Existing records and archival programmes to the job market
Records and archival education and training programmes all over the world are facing increased pressure from the job market to produce records and archive practitioners that can meet the challenges of the rapidly changing job-market terrain. The lack of adequate resources including competent teaching/training personnel and facilities continue to erode the capability of the existing programmes. This paper argues that although Africa has in the recent past witnessed a marked increase in the resident records and archival programmes, the outcomes of these programmes remain less matched to the requirements of the job market. The flip side of the argument is whether the job market has been definitive enough on what is required of the existing records and archival programmes. The discrepancies, for example in the job advertisements, in the qualifications and competencies required for similar posts point to the lack of any uniformity or standards by employers. The paper outlines the nature of the current records and archival programmes in Africa in general and South Africa in particular; it evaluates the available resources; attempts to determine causes of the mismatch between the outcomes of the current programmes vis-à-vis the job-market requirements; and identifies and discusses possible major challenges facing the profession in its efforts to respond to the requirements of a dynamic job-market and the society at large.The paper recommends review of the existing programmes with particular attention to the resources required to achieve the desired outcomes. Continuous engagement between records and archival educators, government, professional bodies and the representatives of the job-market is encouraged.
Keywords: Professional education and training, archive and records management, outcomes, job market