​The Records Management Unit (RMU) is a unit within the National Archives that is the connection point between the National Archives and all the other government institutions such as Ministries, Departments and Public Entities for issues that concern the management of records.

 
The RMU operates within the parameters of the National Archives Act (CAP 477) by making sure that all records management activities within public institutions are performed within the boundaries of the law. In order to do so, the Inspectors of Records within the RMU perform visits and inspections to the records repositories of public entities, departments and ministries.
 
Retention Policies and appraisal of records
 
Appraisal of public records is one of the most important activities performed by the RMU, because it allows public institutions to alleviate the problem of space and also focus their energy and resources on records that are deemed to have enduring historical value. The best practice for a proper appraisal system is to implement a retention policy for all the records that are created by the concerned institution. Before implementation, the policy must be approved by the National Archives so that records of historical value can be identified and transferred to the National Archives when their retention period has expired. Other records which are no longer significant and have no enduring historical value can be professionally destroyed in line with the National Archives Act (Cap 477).
 
 
 
Records Officers
 
Article 16 of the National Archives Act (CAP 477) requires that in every public office there has to a be a Records Officer that “shall be responsible  for  creating  and maintaining adequate documentation of the functions and activities of their respective public offices through the establishment of good records keeping practices”. After a period of consultation between the Office of the Prime Minister and the National Archives, and after given the proper academic training at the University of Malta,  the first Records Officers were recruited and posted at a ministerial level.
 
 
The posting of these Records Officers has been crucial for the operations of the Records Management Unit, because through these officers, the RMU now has a point of contact and a trained interlocutor for when it comes to Records Management issues within a particular ministry.
 
 
In order to keep up to date with the issues and problems that may arise, and have a platform where all the records officers can share their experiences and discuss the issues they are encountering, a Records Officers Forum was instituted. Sessions of the Records Officers Forum are periodically held at the main office of the National Archives. These sessions are chaired by the National Archivist with the assistance of the RMU officers.
 
 
Attention to reader: If you work within a public institution and wish to know more on how Records Officers are recruited, please send an email on rmu.archives@gov.mt
 
 
 
 
Processing of historical records still held by public entities
 
 
When historical records are identified, the RMU gives instructions to the originating office on a way forward regarding the preparation for the transfer of such records to the National Archives. The preparations include sorting, finding the original order, cleaning (when necessary), placing into archival quality boxes and listing. In cases where the records have traces of pest contamination, the records are to be professionally treated before being transferred. The treatment process is done with the qualified guidance and under the supervision of the NAM Conservators.
 
 
 
 
 
Private Deposits and consultation on Records Management practices to private institutions
 
 
Apart from public entities, the Records Management Unit is also directly involved in the evaluation and accessioning of Private records. Although the National Archives legal obligation is only over public records, this institution feels that it has also a moral obligation to collect and preserve records of national importance that were created  by private individuals or private entities. Along the years the National Archives has been trusted as the custodian of numerous collections, such as the private papers of Sir Anthony Mamo and the ones of Dom Mintoff, the vast photographic collection of May Agius, and the Tony Terribile collection.
 
In this regard, we ask the general public to highlight such collections by contacting the National Archives on rmu.archives@gov.mt