Certified Records Manager Education Requirements and Career Info

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a certified records manager. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about degree programs, job duties and certification to find out if this is the career for you.

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Certified records managers have a variety of job opportunities in both public and private sectors. Read this article for information about education requirements and certification opportunities, as well as further career and salary information.

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Essential Information

A records manager organizes, classifies and maintains an organization's records and record management processes. Typically, some level of formal education and experience is needed to achieve voluntary certification in records management. Training programs in records management are available at the associate's, bachelor's and master's degree levels.

Required Education Associate's, bachelor's or master's degree in records management
Other Requirements Voluntary certification available through the ARMA International through the Institute of Certified Records Managers or the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024) 8% for administrative services managers*
Median Salary (2016) $55,990 for records managers**

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **PayScale.com

Certified Records Manager Education Overview

Students in a records management degree program are introduced to basic and advanced records management procedures and terminology. They learn to manage records to make them easily retrievable and are taught to maintain a comprehensive and legally sound records management schedule. Other topics of study in a records management degree program might include paper and electronic record life cycles, filing and storage, e-commerce and databases.


Voluntary certification in records management is available from ARMA International through the Institute of Certified Records Managers (IRCM). Applicants for Certified Records Manager (CRM) status must meet education and work experience standards, in addition to passing a 6-part examination. The exam covers such topics as records creation and use, storage and retrieval and records management technology.

ICRM is also the official certifying body for the Nuclear Information and Records Management Association (NIRMA). To earn the specialty designation CRM/NS (Nuclear Specialist), applicants must pass the general CRM exam, followed by a section on nuclear information and records.

Specialty certification also is available in federal records management through the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). Applicants must pass five tests in subjects such as records scheduling and asset and risk management.

Career Information

All organizations have records, often an enormous amount of them. Records managers can properly start the organization process, clean up disorganized records or simply legalize current records on file. Job duties of records managers might include documenting policies and transactions, controlling the quantity and quality of records, preventing or disposing of unnecessary records and simplifying records management processes.

Examples of jobs that might suit a certified records manager include corporate records lead, information lead, compliance manager, director of records management or information solution architect. Records managers generally are employed by museums, educational institutions, historical sites, research firms, professional or fraternal organizations, private collectors, libraries or other large or small corporations.

While a bachelor's degree is the typical education level for entering the records management field, individuals an associate's degree up to a master's have the opportunity to pursue this career. Voluntary certification is available through ARMA International, and requires passing a 6-part exam, in addition to meeting education and experience requirements.

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