Preservation is a very costly exercise. The existence for any heritage institution is justified by the need to preserve the heritage resources of the country, family or organization. The majority of activities in an archive, museum, or library are guided by the need to extend the usable lives of these collections. Due to the large volumes of records in the National Archives and the accumulated backlog, proper planning is required so as to focus all preservation activities in order to have a positive and measurable impact.
It is standard practice in the heritage sector for institutions to develop institutional Preservation Policies and Disaster Reaction Plans. For this to happen, needs assessments should be conducted so as to clearly identify the problem areas in order to develop intervention measures. Without proper planning, preservation efforts will not have meaningful impact. Preservation planning requires resources and manpower because it is a very labour and time consuming exercise which requires skilled personnel to carry out. The National Archives has developed it Preservation Policy and is in the process of finalising its Disaster Management Plan.