Archivists analyse and document records. They also plan and perform procedures for the safekeeping of records and historically valuable documents. This may include working closely with written records, files, maps, plans, letters, books, certificates, diaries and registers. Records also include other media such as photographs, films, sound recordings, microfilms and electronic or computer records.

Duties & Tasks

Archivists may perform the following tasks:

  • determine how long records need to be kept for accountability and historical purposes by following specified record-keeping requirements
  • ensure records necessary for the ongoing operations of an organisation are identified and preserved
  • survey records held by client agencies and individuals, and arrange for their transfer to archival custody
  • collect records in accordance with an acquisitions policy
  • establish and manage digitisation initiatives to make records more accessible online
  • plan for and carry out digital preservation activities on 'born digital' records (materials that originate in digital form)
  • design systems (including hardware, software, procedures and manuals) that enable organisations to create and keep records of their business activities
  • establish and manage administrative systems to document and control records and archives
  • compile guides, inventories and indices to assist referencing and research
  • provide access to records through reading rooms and online archives for research, administrative, legal and other purposes
  • provide advice and information on issues such as copyright and privacy
  • inform users about how to retrieve information from records
  • research publications or prepare exhibitions using archival records
  • promote collections and engage with users through educational programmes, exhibitions, publications and the web
  • ensure that the environmental conditions required for the storage and conservation of records are maintained according to scientific methods
  • advise on record management issues.

Personal Requirements

  • enthusiasm for research and analysis
  • good oral and written communication skills
  • good liaison and negotiation skills
  • good organisational skills
  • able to undertake highly detailed work
  • interested in the preservation and accurate management of records
  • aptitude for using computers
  • able to work independently
  • interested in history
  • able to accept responsibility.
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