Records Retention Education
Records Retention Basics
Learn about Records Retention Schedules
What is a Retention Schedule?
Every organization in the world creates many records on a daily basis.
Not knowing how to manage them creates significant cost and risk.
Records, whether on paper or stored in a computer, must be retained and be retrievable for at least as long as the law requires you to keep them. You can keep them longer than the law requires if you choose, and for some types of records this is a good idea. For most records, it is smart to destroy them as soon as they have no business or legal value.
To manage your records so as to actually reduce cost and risk requires an integrated program of policy, training, and implementation. This includes routine and well documented destruction of records according to a written "Records Policy".
A well put together Records Policy is the vital first step to a successful records program since all other parts of a records program flow from the Records Policy.
Perhaps the most important and most challenging part of your Records Policy is creating the list of categories into which you will organize your records, and then determining the period of time required to retain the records in each category. This part of your Records Policy is called a "Records Retention Schedule".
Records Retention Schedules can also include information about:
- Which department holds the official copy of the record,
- What event will trigger the countdown to destruction of a record, and
- Which laws dictate the legal requirements for retaining a particular record type.
For the success of your records program, it is important to understand that you must have reliable, current, and thorough research into the laws that tell you how long you must keep each category of records. Only with this research will your Records Retention Schedule be "defensible". Not being "defensible" means that it will be more difficult, more expensive, or even impossible to defend your records destruction in court or during an audit.
This is equally true of any record, whether it is stored physically on paper or electronically in a computer system.
Downloading a records retention "template" from the Internet or a Trade Association will probably not get you even close to a "defensible" Records Retention Schedule. Templates are almost always made up of old and incomplete information. They usually create more risk than they resolve. If you use a downloaded Retention Schedule for your records, it is highly likely that your organization is not compliant with the laws for retaining information, or is creating unnecessary risk by keeping records too long.
For more information on affordably creating a high quality, defensible Records Retention Schedule for your organization, please contact us.
Content Management Software Partners
Retention Manager can export records retention schedules to compatible software products
Certified Partners for Retention Manager
Retention Manager and Retention Wizard let you export records retention schedules and records retention requirements to many compatible Electronic Content Management (ECM) systems.
Below is a list of Content Management products that are certified to be compatible with Retention Manager export files.
If your ECM software is not on this list and you would like it to be, or for more information on how to export retention policies to ECM software, please contact us for more information.
|Retention Manager Certified Compatible Records Management Software|
|Gimmal Sharepoint Compliance Suite|
|EMC Documentum Records Manager and Retention Policy Servers|
|Autonomy / Interwoven Records Manager|
|Open Text Records Manager|
|Oracle Universal Records Manager|
|InSight Automated Records Management System|
|Gain RM by Triadd Software|
Software and Product Support
We deliver Retention Schedule success.
All of our software subscriptions include full product and user support. Please contact us to find out how we can support your Records Retention project. Any and all questions are welcome.
Online tutorials for IRCH software products are available. The following links will open a separate browser window for viewing and listening.
If you are currently a customer, you can access Technical Support by phone (303-721-7500) or by using our Helpdesk to access support topics, submit a new support request or view the status of an existing request.