(and every day!)
Thank you, Public Servants!
Every day public servants work to make life better for all of us. They guard our national security, fight crime, work to cure diseases, educate our children, care for veterans, and deliver many other important services to the American people. Public servants are also our neighbors, relatives and friends who live and work in our communities, and they’ve earned our thanks – especially for their heroic efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
An unsung part of the job for people working in nearly every government agency, including law enforcement and public health departments, is responding to requests for information contained in public records. While it’s not any agency’s primary mission, dedicated public servants at each agency work hard to keep the public, businesses, the media, and other governments apprised and themselves accountable. Recognizing their work is especially important in recent years as public service employees have had to scale many barriers to keep communities informed and functioning during the pandemic.
This year alone, state, city and county agencies across the nation using GovQA software have already responded to over half a million million requests for information—and the number keeps growing. According to GovQA’s Peers in Public Records (PiPR) Index, which tracks state and local public records trends, request volumes increased by 178% since 2018. As these requests become more voluminous and complex, the total time an average agency spends processing requests has also skyrocketed, from an average 270 hours in Q1 2018 to nearly 3000 hours in Q3 2021 (over 1000% increase). Demand for larger files, such as audio and video data, also has increased substantially in recent years – with file size jumping 410% since 2018.
Modern Request Management Technology Gets FOIA Done Efficiently —
Making Time for Other Critical Missions
Many forward-thinking agencies have invested in new records request management technology to make it easier for the public to request and receive records and information through in accordance with federal and local FOIA laws. Our centralized, secure public records portals allow governments to more easily and securely manage the increasing volume of records requests; making agencies more efficient, saving tax dollars, and freeing up staff to work on other https://www.govqa.com/important business.
As the world continues to change rapidly, technology will continue to evolve and change the way people live and work. The only certainty is that there will be a continued need for public servants who respond to emergencies and protect us, educate our children, cure diseases, keep us informed, and serve the nation.
Join the Conversation. What are your peers prioritizing as they look to 2022?
Take the 2022 Peers In Public Records Survey.
The Peers in Public Records Newsletter (formerly FOIA News) is a bi-monthly e-newsletter brought to you by GovQA. It is a collection of the latest trends in public record requests and government transparency initiatives, shared stories, live roundtables, informative case studies, and actionable knowledge that will help you calm the chaos and keep your organization compliant. Send your comments to email@example.com.
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