When it comes to records management, small mistakes can lead to big problems. Case in point: recently, a provincial ministry department lost a box of employee records. At first it was thought the box was thought to be stolen, then assumed destroyed. Because there was no official records inventory, the fate of the box is still in question. As a result, confidential employee files may be in the hands of someone who should not have access to them.
This incident underscores the need to secure and manage your business records. In this blog post, we offer tips for doing just that.
Invest in Professional Records Storage and Document Management
When records aren’t tracked and secured they are easily lost, or even stolen. A records storage and document management service offers professional tracking and protection of documents and files. Your documents are stored in a records centre where they are protected with advanced security systems and managed with state of the art document management software. All record activity, from storage to final disposition, is tracked and documented.
Have Retention and Destruction Schedules
A proper retention schedule ensures that boxes are disposed of at the appropriate times, which minimizes the risk of private information getting into the wrong hands and eliminates unnecessary storage costs. That box of employee records may have not gone missing from the ministry had there been an established retention and destruction schedule. Records retention and destruction schedules are based on the legal, fiscal and administrative value of your information. They allow you to account for your record inventory at all times. Seek the advice of your attorney to understand your company’s retention and destruction obligations.
Use a NAID AAA Certified Shredding Service
Although the Ministry thought the box of records was destroyed, they weren’t 100 percent sure. A NAID AAA Certified shredding and destruction service gives you peace of mind knowing exactly when, where and how your documents are destroyed. Locked shred collection containers are placed throughout your office. The contents of your container are collected and destroyed on a regular schedule by a background-screened, bonded and uniformed shredding specialist. A Certificate of Destruction is issued at the completion of your document shredding project, offering documented proof of the destruction process.
Make Records Management a Team Effort
Making records management a team effort can help your organization avoid losing its records. From the moment records are created, until they’re destroyed, your staff should take an active role in following established policies and procedures.
Current provincial and federal requirements have made compliance essential. Failing to follow privacy guidelines can lead to stiff penalties. As a result, make your records storage, data protection and document shredding partner part of your records management team. They can provide the support and guidance you need to manage your records securely, efficiently, and in a cost-effective manner.
FileBank offers records management solutions to businesses throughout Canada. For more information about our services, please contact us by phone or complete the form on this page.