Many records are created on paper, however records come in various formats – print, digital, audio and video to name a few. Emails, photos, social media information, faxes, maps, and paper files are all examples of potential records. These too may need to be retained if they provide evidence of a business transaction.
In order to meet applicable legislations and industry standards, records need to be kept for a certain amount of time. Depending on what type information is recorded, the retention periods may differ.
In some cases, records need to be kept for less than 7 years, and in others more. For best practice record keeping, consult the relevant legislations and industry standards to apply record specific retention periods.
Records that are created within the company, that relate to the business belong to the company. They are not your personal records. These are company assets and need to be managed within the framework of your corporate policy.
Keeping certain records is required by law, and therefore a policy or plan is required in order to manage your records efficiently and accurately. By creating an effective policy, your company will reduce the risk of data loss, increase legislative compliance, and improve resource efficiencies.
Retaining records for too short or too long a time can be equally as dangerous. By law, records may be required as evidence. Your company may be at risk if records have been destroyed prior to their disposal date or they exist after their retention period has expired.
Organisations may produce records that have historical significance and therefore require protection and preservation. Simply because a record is ‘old’ doesn’t mean it should never be disposed of. By referring to legislation and industry standards, companies need to ascertain what constitutes a permanent record, and what can in fact be disposed of over time, using appropriate retention periods.
As a leader in the information management industry, Recall can help you to manage the entire lifecycle of your records, from creation, through the retention period, to final disposal through our innovative document management solutions. Contact our expert team today for more information about our Document Management Services.