Explaining Records Management to a 4 Year Old


“Daddy, what do you do?” My 4 year old is very inquisitive; I was about to jump into the normal description but quickly realized that she wouldn’t have any frame of reference around things like the internet, software, records, record centers or metadata. She uses all of these things but doesn’t understand those terms; she knows them as games or shows or movie titles or song lyrics or pictures or my phone. It was clear this was going to take some time...

If you ever tried to explain what you do to a child, it is very hard. Especially in our business because we can’t even agree on terms or process or when something should be declared a record (forgetting the fact that we can’t agree what could declared a record - Social Media anyone?) I was feeling up for a challenge.

So I began: “Daddy designs software for our clients...” Nope. “Daddy designs features for...” Nope. I was beginning to doubt myself. Could I actually describe what I do, encompass the essence of records management both from the physical and digital sense, in one sentence to my 4 year old?

“Daddy safely stores paper in the computer so our friends can see it.”

I think I nailed it, what do you think?

Randall Sanders
Product Manager
Archive Systems, Inc.

What do you think?

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