While attending SPC2009, I was excited (since this is a popular topic for my customers) to hear about the new compliance features (AKA Records Management) being incorporated into SharePoint 2010.  Records Management is a growing requirement across most industries.  The Content Management improvements in SharePoint 2010 will enable customers to ensure information is managed in accordance with policy and regulation while providing a single content management platform across the enterprise.  Below is insight into a few of the features that will hopefully enable your organization to meet their regulatory requirements.

Compliance Everywhere

SharePoint 2010 will enable ‘Compliance Everywhere’ by providing all the expected tools (retention, legal holds, file plans, content types, etc.) necessary, either through the browser or via the Office client.  This enables content managers to discover and enforce policies on documents, groups of documents, and list items using the same tools they use for non-compliance related content.

In Place Records

A large request from the SharePoint community was for the ability to declare records in place instead of having to relocate items to a Record Center and away from related content.  SharePoint 2010 will answer this request with in place declaration and retention of records.  This allows users to have all their associated content, including official records, in a central location for ease of discovery and collaboration. 

Item Declaration

Do you have content in SharePoint lists, pages, wikis, and blogs that require regulatory compliance?  SharePoint 2010 will enable customers to declare not only documents as records, but also pages, wikis, blogs, list items, and more.  It was mentioned at SPC2009 there are around 70+ items within SharePoint that retention policies can be applied.

Document Sets

Document Sets are a new feature that isn’t unique to records management but compliments the RM capabilities.  Document sets enable users to work with a set of files as single entity and enables easier discovery of a group of related documents. This feature also allows the assignment of a prefix to the Document ID so all the documents in a library, of a specific document type, with specific metadata, record type, etc can be easily discovered.         

Advanced Reporting

Reporting is as important to a Records Management solution as the processes themselves.  Now users and compliance managers can easily create spreadsheet reports for the Records Library structure and retention schedules and access audit history of events that have occurred on records.  These reports can be generated for an individual item, a document set, or an entire records library.   

This is just scratching the surface of the improved content management improvements coming in SharePoint 2010 that enable ‘Compliance Everywhere’.  It’s important to emphasize that these features can be implemented anywhere within your SharePoint environment and will no longer require a dedicated records center.  SharePoint 2010 is a content management platform for customers to integrate compliance as part of the content management lifecycle into a single, consistent framework.

Want to learn more about SharePoint 2010?  Check out the new SharePoint 2010 product site that is running on, SharePoint 2010.