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Frequently asked questions
What level of expertise is required for use, attorney, experienced paralegal, high-level project manager, or administrative assistant?
Retention Manager is best used by an experienced Records Manager, with previous records retention experience. Based on our experience, none of the individuals listed above would be capable of successfully developing a legally-defensible, comprehensive records retention schedule with our software . . . or with anyone else’s software. They could develop something much better than if left to their own resources, and perhaps good enough to meet your needs, but not to IRCH’s standards. And, of course, an experience Records Manager could develop a very good retention schedule within a reasonably short time with our product.
However, we are confident that an attorney, paralegal or experience project manager can successfully manage and update the records retention schedule with Retention Manager provided we did the initial setup of the software and data through a small consulting project. The project would normally involve a 2-3 day site visit to review your industry-specific records and issues. We would then prepare a comprehensive retention schedule for your review, supported by complete legal research (which generally includes some custom legal research not available in our published database). Once approved, we would provide you with Retention Manager installed with your custom data, training, technical support and annual updates to the legal research and software.
We are trying to estimate the resources required to execute the project. Can you help by sharing what a recommend resource (FTE) to build our functional, departmental retention schedule?
Retention Manager has the full capabilities to build functional departmental retention schedules. But, as described above, you may not have the internal capabilities to complete the task.
If you were to undertake the retention project yourself, I would estimate that if would take up to 6 months for the person (½-time to ¾-time FTE) to complete training, become competent in the software, learn records retention methodology and principles, gather company information, develop the retention schedule, and manage the reviews. With a consulting project, the retention schedule can be completed in one month (from the site visit), at a much high level of quality, with valuable training provided to your person while on-site.
Can you please provide us the competitive advantages of your products?
We, of course, believe Retention Manager and Retention Wizard are superior to the other products you mentioned for some of the following reasons:
- IRCH was founded in 1984 to research legal requirements for business records and provide subscription and consulting services. We thus have over 33 years of experience in researching legal requirements for business records and records retention.
- IRCH has conducted hundreds of records retention projects itself (and as a subcontract to other consultants) and supported hundreds (if not thousands) more through IRCH products. We know records retention.
- Other vendors do not work exclusively in the records retention fields – they may provide software and services for other records and information management tasks, and provide records retention services as a side product. IRCH specializes only in legal research and software for records retention.
- We believe IRCH’s database and legal research capabilities are superior. While there will never be a way to check and compare the vendor databases, we believe IRCH is better because:
- In our 32-year history, the legal research has primarily been performed by three different in-house employees.
- Bret Andreski, our Senior Staff Attorney, has been performing and managing our legal research since 1998.
- With our long history, we no longer need to find for first time laws that have been enacted years ago, other than to determine any changes or deletions. Instead, we focus on new provisions that have been more recently enacted.
- By sheer size, we publish over 20,000 citations in our various databases and maintain an inventory of over 25,000 more citations in our non-published, custom database that can be used for custom, consulting projects.
- Our products utilize the sophisticated, unique “Profile” function that establishes the profile of an organization based on industries and subjects related to the legal research. Once the Profile is developed with generally a few hundred entries) the Profile can identify thousands of relevant legal research in the database in a manner of seconds. And, this same process can be repeated in subsequent years to semi-automatically identify changes in retention based on changes in the legal research, and provide the complete complement of tools to complete and manage the updates. As you do your research, ask the other vendors to provide the detailed step-by-step process for updating their retention schedules.
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