How long do you need to keep records? Most often retention periods are either set by law or regulation, or precedent in your industry. Does your company have a records retention or information governance policy? This is the framework which addresses all types of data and records, recognizes and manages the risks associated with this asset and develops, deploys, monitors and tests the necessary processes and controls to maintain a compliant program. You need to set up a retention scheme that achieves your required result, but with the least amount of effort and burden on your staff.
The trend is to move away from long detailed retention schedules that require too much thought and understanding on the part of knowledge workers. The world is moving to “Big Bucket” retention models. Setting up a few different retention "big buckets" will greatly simplify your records retention policy, and increase the likelihood your organization will actually follow the plan. The concept behind a Big Bucket model is to put similar documents with similar retention periods under the same retention schedule, even if it means you hold some documents slightly longer than absolutely required – simple.
For more information on how long to keep records, download our Special Report, Drop those pounds in 2014 (pounds of paper that is!) or view the accompanying webinar.