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  • How we manage information

    Our Information Management lifespan model is a representation of the functions and activities involved in managing our information. Our models are an important element of our information architecture and provides a foundation for defining and analysing our information management activities.

    The model below presents the lifespan of information from acquisition through to disposal. It indicates the governance and operational elements for the management of information and the enabling services we provide in partnership with our client-facing activities.

    The six elements of the Lifespan model are:

    The image presents the ATO's Information Management Lifespan Model from acquisition through to disposal. Further detail on the six elements are available below.

    Figure 1 – The ATO Information Management lifespan model


    We apply contemporary practices aligning with the National Archives’ Digital Continuity 2020 policy to manage our information. Our strategy is developed to manage information and establish governance practices ensuring we achieve transparency and accountability expected of us by government and the people of Australia.


    We plan how we acquire information to ensure we build in quality and appropriate techniques for obtaining and storing the information we need to do our jobs. Our data is received from clients and other stakeholders, and we find information we need from a range of sources, or we create new information from our analysis or business activities. Different management effort is applied depending on the value of information.


    We apply contemporary management practices and leading technology to effectively use the information acquired. We make decisions based on evidence we can rely on and protect information we are entrusted with. We leverage technology to arrange our information logically and to support the work of others.


    Information is shared with our clients and stakeholders as necessary to meet our objectives while maintaining the confidentiality of their information. We publish and present this information in a professional manner. Our information is easily understood, accessible and consumed by a broad audience including people with accessibility challenges.


    To make the best use of resources, we retire information no longer required. Much of our information has a short retention period and can be transferred, archived or disposed of after a short period of time. We ensure we meet our statutory obligations for the retention and disposal of records that are part of our business activities.


    Our information management capabilities are integrated into business activities that enable us to comply with legislation, regulations, policies and procedures to adopt good practices. Our information management professionals work with business areas to identify and resolve issues, and to provide advice and access to resources enabled by technology and integrated into our business activities.

      Last modified: 22 Feb 2021QC 33534