University Records Management in 5 Steps

University Records Management in 5 Steps

The basic requirements for managing University records can be met through the following five steps:

  1. Know what records you have, by maintaining an accurate information inventory.
  2. Know which records your office is responsible for, as the University’s official record, and which are copies by matching your inventory to the University records retention schedules.
  3. Organize & Safeguard your records, guided by the University records classification structure, and the information privacy & confidentiality classification for each records class.
  4. Destroy transitory records (copies & ephemeral records) when they are no longer needed.
  5. Dispose of records when they are no longer needed by the University & document their disposal.

Following these steps helps ensure:

  • Compliance with record-keeping requirements of all laws and regulations applicable to the University’s operations, as well as Policy 46 – Information Management.
  • Consistency in our approach to managing administrative information across the University.
  • Availability of information for University administration for as long as it is needed.
  • Timely disposal of records when they are no longer needed, and appropriate documentation of disposal to show that the University is following its records retention rules.

Beyond the “5 Steps”

The Canadian national standard for managing electronic records, CAN/CGSB-72.34-2017: Electronic records as documentary evidence (free download), includes additional records management requirements intended to help organizations ensure the trustworthiness of their electronic records, and therefore the admissibility and weight of these records as documentary evidence in legal proceedings. These additional requirements will be summarized in supplementary sections to this guide, in future updates.

Determining appropriate records management measures beyond the minimum “5 steps” should take place in the context of risk assessment and management processes described in Policy 11 – University Risk Management. Information stewards and custodians can contact the University Records Manager if they have questions about these additional requirements and their significance for specific University processes and information systems.

Please note: this records management guide is a work-in-progress, so please contact the University Records Manager if you have any comments, questions, or suggestions for improvements.