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Report on the Review of Acquisition Processes for Collections

December 2010

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LAC has developed a Collection Development Framework. This framework provides clear and specific guidelines for the branches responsible for developing acquisition strategies based on LAC's key directions and priorities. Some directions in the framework need to be clarified, particularly with regard to collection representativeness, digital documentary heritage and documents on Aboriginal and multicultural communities.

Roles and responsibilities for establishing directions and strategic plans for acquisitions, performance measurement, results reporting by objective and risk management have yet to be defined.

Improvements are needed in terms of the strategic and operating plans to bring them in line with LAC's strategic directions. Moreover, data-collection tools and mechanisms are needed for reporting on these directions and preparing activity reports that contain financial results.

Decisions need to be documented and include justification for acquisitions based on directions and selection criteria. LAC needs to implement control mechanisms to ensure appropriate decision-making with regard to acquisitions.

LAC needs an acquisition policy that contains a policy statement and guidelines for the acquisition of analogue and digital records. In addition, guidelines on the decision-making process, control mechanisms for active oversight, selection criteria and a related-cost methodology should be included.

Given the significant observations made in this report, we cannot conclude that the governance structure, risk management and controls in place for the various acquisition processes in LAC's collection were effective during the period under review, 2006–07 to 2008–09, and consistent with the organization's strategic directions.

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