Using Records

You have a responsibility to provide reasonable and timely access to your records while at the same time ensuring they are maintained and preserved. You and your organization are the primary users of your records, but you must also work with a wide variety of other researchers, including taxpayers, teachers, students, historians, genealogists, lawyers, and journalists. For all of these, develop resources and strategies to make your records more accessible.

Organizing your records

Think about how to make your records accessible from the moment you create them:

  • set up a filing system based on how people will search for information
  • file electronic records in a manner that mirrors your paper filing system
  • allocate adequate space
  • purchase appropriate filing equipment
  • develop a file plan and detailed procedures for retrieval and refiling

When you no longer use them everyday

Inactive records are those you must still retain but use infrequently or not at all. Before setting up a storage area for inactive records, consider how you will provide security, arrange shelving, and locate and retrieve records.