Please note that in some instances the Subject and Document Type will be the same. ); Use hyphens (-) or underscores (_) to separate elements in a file name; Avoid very long file names; (Ex: 2004_Notes_v01.doc)  Avoid using the word version or draft and the beginning of the file name for access purposes (Ex: Version1_2004_Notes.doc). A consistent and descriptive convention will allow you to: Know the content of a file without opening it; Find and identify files even if they are no longer in their original folder; File names should allow you to identify a precise experiment from the name. Electronic records are usually organized in a series of folders. Order the elements in a file name in the most appropriate way to retrieve the record, with the most important element first Does it make sense to all user groups? Bibliographic Center for Research’s (BCR). I didn’t like how long the file names were getting. case number, project title 3. As a general policy, do not use periods or spaces in file names. For example, a staff member could see that “HF0035broch96/97P.pdf” is a brochure about a House bill (HF0035) in the 1996/1997 session that is available to the public. For more information on the legal framework you must consider when developing a file naming policy, refer to the Legal Framework chapter of these guidelines and the Minnesota State Archives’ Preserving and Disposing of Government Records. Consider establishing an agency-wide file naming policy that complements your electronic records management strategy. What information is most important to capture in the file name itself? File names will consist of 3 parts: (1) Command Chronology (2) Unit Name, (3) Date. Determining what metadata to collect. For example, use the date first on events that are time specific or reoccurring, and use the name of the event for events that are infrequent and will be easier to find by name rather than date. The following rules should be followed: Keep file names short, but comprehensible, using commonly recognised acronyms or abbreviations where appropriate. Establish naming conventions for electronic records. Legally, public records must be accessible. For example: Relationship to and connection with paper records, Minnesota People Records Search (Birth, Death, etc. File naming conventions help you stay organized and makes it easier to identify your files. Punctuation – decide on conventions for if and when to use punctuation symbols, capitals, hyphens and spaces. In those instances, omit the redundant step. 651-259-3015 • 844-667-8679. By the software, computer system, or storage device? Using standardized filenames helps ensure that like materials (protocols, experimental data, analyzed data) can be easily identified and grouped. Could these changes affect the file naming strategy? Standardized naming conventions improve the speed of retrieval. A simple policy will be more consistently used, resulting in records that are consistently named, and thus easier to organize and access. You will need to decide what metadata to collect and include in file names. In the world of electronic records, the record’s file name provides metadata that places the record in context with other records, records series, and records retention schedules. DON Correspondence Manual SECNAV M5216.5. Establishing naming conventions within your office will help you: Are there limitations on the length of the file name? In most organizations, the policy for naming a file (and hence a record) is left to individuals or to groups of individuals (e.g., departments, committees). Location/spatial coordinates 3. All titles should be meaningful and relevant. The inclusion of this parameter in your policy will help you meet your legal requirements to capture records as set forth by the Official Records Act. Pay close attention to the freedom you give staff members (and outside vendors) in naming files. This document explores the general characteristics of records, how records are used and referenced, and the file-naming rules that should be applied to all electronic records. Determine which file is the “official” copy. When I talk about file naming conventions, I’m not limiting the definition of the word ‘file’ to source footage files coming out of a camera. Use only alpha-numeric characters. This document explores the general characteristics of records, how records are used and referenced, and the file-naming rules that should be applied to all electronic records., Archives Branch: Command Chronology Program, Archives Branch, Marine Corps History Division.

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