Records Management

TSU Office of Institutional Compliance

 

 Records Management

The function of records management is a component of The Office of Institutional Compliance. This site is designed to act as a reference guide and source of various forms of information concerning records management. This includes such factors as the inventory, organization and retention of state records. The information being provided has been designed to precisely detail the responsibilities of each department/area as well as the duties of the Records Management Coordinator, as detailed by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, State and Local Records management Division. The information contained on this website has been obtained from Records Management Policy Model 2 (for Ordinance, Order, or Resolution) - Texas State Library as well as the Texas State Records Management Manual.

Table of Contents

Introduction 

What is a state record? 

Available Forms Concerning Record Retention

http://www.tsu.edu/About/Administration/Institutional_Compliance/Standard_Forms/RecordRetentionForms.asp

 What is a State Record?

Record: The Administrative Rules of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, Texas Administrative Code, Chapter 13 § 6.1 defines a state record as any written, photographic, machine-readable, or other recorded information created or received by or on behalf of a state agency or an elected official that documents activities in the conduct of state business or use of public resources. 

back to top

 What is records management? Record management: the application of management techniques to the creation, use, maintenance, retention, preservation, and disposal of records for the purposes of reducing the costs and improving the efficiency of record keeping. The term includes the development of records control schedules, the management of filing and information retrieval systems, the protection of essential and permanent records, the economical and space-effective storage of inactive records, control over the creation and distribution of forms, reports, and correspondence, and the management of micrographics and electronic and other records storage systems. 

back to top

Why is records management important?  

  • Allows Needed Documents and Information to be Easily Accessible (assists in audits)
    Reduces the Need of Excessive Equipment for Storing Records
    Increases Productivity and Reduces Time Spent Searching for Needed Documents
  • Allows for Accurate Trail of the Record's Life Cycle, from Creation or Receipt, through Use and Maintenance, to Final Disposition

back to top

Who are the role players in the records management system? 

[Texas State Library Records Management Publications Policy Model 2 SUGGESTED POLICY MODEL FOR ESTABLISHING A RECORDS MANAGEMENT PROGRAM BY ORDINANCE, ORDER, OR RESOLUTION § 2 -11.]

  1. Department head (the officer who by ordinance, order, or administrative policy is in charge of an
    office that creates or receives records)
    • Cooperate with the Records Management Officer in carrying out the policies and procedures established for the efficient and economical management of records
      Designate a member of his or her staff to serve as Records Liaison Officer for the implementation of the records management program in the department
      In the event of the resignation, retirement, dismissal, or removal by action of the department head of a person designated as a Records Liaison Officer, the department head shall promptly designate another person to fill the vacancy.
    • A department head may serve as Records Liaison Officer for his or her department.
  2. Records Liaison Officer (usually the administrative assistant or office manager)
    • Shall be thoroughly familiar with all the records created and maintained by the department Conduct or supervise inventories of the records of the department in preparation for the development of records retention schedules In cooperation with the Records Management Officer coordinate and implement the policies and procedures of the records management program in their departments
    • Disseminate information to department staff concerning the records management program
  3. Records Management Coordinator/ Officer
    • Acts as liaison between the agency and the State and Local Records Management Division Conduct or oversee the inventory of all agency records Direct Records Liaison Officers or other personnel in the conduct of records inventories in preparation for the development of records control schedules as required by state law Conduct or oversee the preparation, maintenance, and implementation of the agency records retention schedule. Monitor records retention schedules and administrative rules issued by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission to determine if the records management program and the records control schedules are in compliance with state regulations Instruct Records Liaison Officers and other personnel in policies and procedures of the records management plan and their duties in the records management program Assist in assuring that the maintenance, preservation, destruction, or other disposition of the records is carried out in accordance with the policies and procedures of the records management program and the requirements of state law
    • Attend training and information classes offered by the State and Local Records Management Division and coordinate records management training for agency staff, as needed

back to top

What is records inventory?  

  • Is not a document-by-document inventory, but a descriptor of the function, use, or content of the records (i.e. correspondences, reports, raw data)
    Each item is categorized based on a records series, which is a group of similar records that are normally filed in close proximity or used in conjunction with one another
  • The record inventory should be completed on a records inventory worksheet (the worksheet lists a description of the records, the manner in which they are categorized, the location and retention period of the record, as well as the record's medium, i.e. paper, tape, electronic)

back to top

When should records inventory be completed?  

  • Each records liaison officer should conduct an inventory on an annual basis (this may vary, based on the completion of the retention schedule)
    The records management coordinator should act as a guide and source of reference for the records liaison officer
    Each inventory that is completed supersedes the previous inventory
  • Each time a record is transferred to another location

  back to top

What are the benefits of conducting a records inventory?  

  • Makes future inventories effortless
    Faster retrieval of needed documents by all office personnel
    States the specific location of record and the medium of which the record is composed
    Assists in the disposition of outdated records
    A foundation for the records retention schedule
    Assists in audits
  • Reflects the type of equipment used for housing records

back to top

How to prepare for a records inventory?  

  • Determine the best plan for surveying records, confer with colleagues
    Begin moderately as to not become overwhelmed
    Develop a schedule and implement deadlines for completion
  • Work together as a unit within the department, obtain support from all records management role players

back to top

What is the records retention schedule? 
[Texas Government Code § 441.185]Records Retention Schedule: The records retention schedule is the required document that lists the agency's records and establishes the retention period for each records series title including the length of time the records will be maintained in agency offices and inactive storage before final disposition. The document also shows the security status of the records, designates records that have archival value, verifies the record medium, and identifies vital records.

  • It is maintained on a biannual basis (based on timeliness of approval and recertification by Texas State Library & The State Auditors Office)

back to top

Why is the records retention schedule important?  

  • It allows the university to comply with legal obligations concerning retention and disposition of records
    It lists an accurate inventory of the location, retention period and types of record available
    It is a concise reference guide for audit purposes
    It is based on the university's inventory
  • It is the basis by which records may be legally disposed

back to top

What method(s) are used to dispose of records?  

  1. Transfer to University Archives - For those records series that have archival classification.
  2. General Disposition- disposing of records in general trash pickup, dumpster, or by recycling.
    • Most often used for bulk, non-confidential type documents, i.e. raw data used for reports, general correspondences, print outs, etc.
  3. Shredding- documents are dissected into small undecipherable portions.
    • Generally used when the documents being destroyed are confidential or contain pertinent information, i.e. social security/ id numbers, personal information, etc.
  4. Water Submersion-lowering documents in water for an extended period until the document is no longer legible.
    • Generally used for confidential information or documents not meant for general viewing. Used when there is an abundance of records to be destroyed.
    • This method is also used if the designated department/area does not have access to a shredder or utilizing a shredder is not feasible.

back to top

What are the proper steps concerning records disposition?   

1.       A department/area representative takes a note of the records in question.
The representative then reviews the TSU Retention Schedule or contacts the Records Management Officer in order to verify the retention period of the records. The representative completes the Records Disposition Log (TSURM002)
 
o     Column 1 refers to the type of document in question, i.e. correspondence, time sheet, workers comp. form, raw data etc.
o     Column 2 should detail an estimate of the area that the documents occupy. (the area being occupied by file cabinets or boxes)
o     Column 4  should list the year the document was generated, if there are several of the same type of documents from various years, it is appropriate to indicate the type of record once(in Column 1) and list the multiple years in this section, i.e. 93-98.
o     Column 5 states the method of disposition, i.e. archiving, shredding, water submersion, or trash disposal.
o     Column 7 requires the signature of the representative authorizing the disposition.
o     For request for destruction the department representative must also complete the Departmental Certification/Request for Destruction section.
 
1.       The Records Management Officer verifies the accuracy of the Disposition Log and signs off on it.
2         The departmental/area representative then disposes of the records  (if water submersion is the method of disposition, customer service is contacted to perform this operation).

  back to top

Please refer any questions or comments to  compliance@tsu.edu