Records Management

Type: 
Procedure
Category: 
Institutional Integrity
Department: 
Archives
Phone: 
(541) 463-5466
Primary Contact: 
Elizabeth Uhlig
Contact Email: 
Responsible Executive Authority: 
Chief Information Officer
Purpose: 

This procedure describes the process used to select, transfer, retrieve, and destroy records in various formats. It also covers access and confidentiality issues, and guidelines for disaster preparedness and response. The Records Program assists the college community in systematically managing the appraisal, scheduling, storage, and disposition of college records.

Narrative: 

Records Management Procedures

Records Management: Media and Formats

See Also:  Archives



Selecting Records 

Records (and the information they contain) are evaluated or appraised in order to determine how useful they are now and how valuable they will be in the future. The college archivist assists departments in evaluating records and selecting appropriate records for transfer to the Archives.

Selection criteria:  Records are selected for transfer to the Archives, either on a permanent or temporary basis, based on the following criteria:

  • Records document the administrative, legal, and financial functions and activities of the college;
  • Records have long-term or historical value because they contain information of historical interest to the creating department, the college, the community, and to future researchers;
  • Federal requirements;
  • Oregon statutes and administrative rules;
  • LCC policy and the needs of the creators of the records;
  • Best business practices and professional standards; and
  • Other criteria such as size, frequency of use, cost of storage and preservation, physical condition, and the format of the records.

Scheduling Records

Records retention schedule: A records retention schedule describes records and specifies how long they must be kept and when they can be destroyed. 

The Oregon State Archivist has the responsibility to authorize destruction of public records and has developed a general records retention schedule (Oregon Administrative Rules 166-450) for all community colleges in Oregon. 

Procedures:
  • Refer to Lane's Records Retention Schedule on the Archives web site at:  Records Retention & Disposition Schedule: Using the Schedule
  • Refer to the Archives webpage for details about Lane's Records Retention & Disposition Schedule at: Records Retention & Dispositon Schedule: Understanding the Schedule. 
  • Consult with the Archivist for assistance in applying the schedule and implementing the retention and disposition options.
  • Contact the Archivist if certain records are not included in the schedule or if the specified retention period seems inappropriate.

Transferring Records to the Archives 

Records Center:  The Archives maintains a Records Center for the temporary storage of non-permanent, inactive records and for the permanent storage of records with long-term, historical value.

Legal custody:   For temporary records, legal custody of the records remains with the department or office that created the records. For permanent records, legal custody of the records is transferred to the Archives.

Access:  For temporary records, access to the information in the records is limited to the staff of the originating department and the Archives staff.  For permanent records, once they are processed, records are open to the college community and other patrons for research. 

Criteria for transfer to the Archives:  In order to qualify for storage by the Archives, the records:

  • must be inactive (no longer required by the creating department to carry on its current activities and business);
  • must be the official copy of the record;,
  • must have at least two years remaining on the scheduled retention period; and
  • will ultimately be destroyed or permanently transferred to the college Archives.
Procedures:

Record storage boxes: All records must be transferred in standard record storage boxes.  This provides for maximum efficiency and makes the best use of available shelf space.  Each box holds one cubic foot of material; that is, approximately 15" of records in leter file folders or 12" of records in legal file folders.  One file drawer of letter-sized files fill up about two record boxes.

Record storage boxes are furnished by the Archives. Boxes may be picked up from the Archives or the archivist will deliver boxes to the requesting office.  Records storage boxes provided by the Archives may only be used for storing records in the Archives and may not be used for office or personal storage.

Preparing records for storage:  For information on how to prepare records for storage, refer to the "Preparing Records for Storage" section on the web page Records Program: Storage.

Labels:   Temporarily mark the boxes on the upper left corner of the front of the box with an abbreviation for the department and the box number.  The Archives staff will prepare permanent labels once the boxes arrive in the Archives.

Forms:  All records transferred to the Archives must be accompanied by a Transmittal Form and Contents List.

  • Transmittal Form:  A Transmittal Form documents the accession or transfer of records from the creating department to the Archives.
  • Contents List:  A Contents List is a complete and accurate inventory of the contents of each box of records.  The inventory must be detailed enough to enable the Archivist to find a file when you ask to retrieve it later.

How to Send Records to the Archives for Temporary or Permanent Storage:

  • Refer to the Records Retention Schedule and consult with the Archivist to make sure records meet the necessary standards for storage.
  • Contact the Archivist to request records boxes. email: Archives@lanecc.edu or telephone:  (541) 463-5466
  • Put the records into records boxes.  For details, refer to: Preparing Records for Storage.
  • Mark the boxes on the upper left corner of the front of the box with an abbreviation for the department and the box number.
  • Fill out the Transmittal Form.
    • Open the TF document in MS Word.  Save the document onto a desktop computer.
    • Complete the first two sections (with the exception of the Accession # which will be assigned later).
    • Fill-in brief descriptions of each box, including the box #, description, and dates of the records.
  • Complete the Contents List (page 2 of the Transmittal Form) with detailed descriptions of the box contents.
  • Email the completed Transmittal  Form / Contents List as an attachment to: Archives@lanecc.edu
  • Contact the Archivist to make arrangements for the boxes to be picked up and taken to the Archives.
  • The Archives will assign an Accession # and complete the Transmittal Form.
  • Two copies of the Transmittal Form will be sent to the department for a signature. Return one signed copy to the Archives.  The other copy is kept by the department to refer to when requesting records from the Archives in the future.

Retrieving Records 

Departments or offices that have stored records in the Archives may need to recall a file or group of files from storage.

  • Files may be retrieved temporarily and later returned to storage.
  • Files may be permanently removed from storage and returned to the physical custody of the creating department or office.

Authority to request records:  Because legal custody of the records temporarily stored in the Archives remains with the office or department that created the records, access to records in storage is limited to the creating department or the Archives staff.  Retrieval requests from other departments or persons will be referred to the creating department for authorization. 

Delivery:  Under normal conditions, the Archives staff will retrieve and deliver records within two days. If there is a special urgency, the Archives staff will make arrangements for quick retrieval and delivery. Campus mail or the courier service is used to deliver records to the Downtown Center or airport in Eugene, Cottage Grove, Florence, or other locations. 

Procedures:
  • Contact the Archives by telephone (541) 463-5466) or by e-mail (Archives@lanecc.edu) to request records.
  • Refer to the Transmittal Form / Contents List and give the archivist the following information:
    • Department or office name
    • Series title
    • Description of records to be retrieved (folder label, file name, file number)
    • Accession number
    • Box number
  • The Archives staff will deliver the records to the requesting department.
  • Contact the Archives staff to return the records to storage.
  • There is no need to notify the Archives if a department decides not to return a file to storage.

Destroying Records

Criteria: Records are ready for destruction if they have met the legally required retention as defined by the Records Retention Schedule, and they are not involved in any ongoing audit, litigation, or administrative action.

Destruction date: The destruction date is determined at the time the records are transferred to storage in the Archives and is calculated according to the Records Retention Schedule.

Authority to destroy records:  The Archives will ask the creating department or office to authorize destruction of records when the retention period has been satisfied.  The department should carefully review the authorization to make sure the records are no longer needed for audit, legal, administrative, or research purposes. 

Confidentiality: Many college records contain information that is confidential and exempt from public disclosure and therefore requires special handling. OAR 166-30-060(2) states that "Records which are confidential by law ... must be destroyed by shredding, pulping, or incineration" and outlines specific guidelines designed to insure the confidential destruction of records.

The Archives arranges for the destruction of records which insures that confidentiality is protected from the time the records leave storage until the time they are destroyed. When appropriate, "Confidential Destruction" notations are indicated in the disposition statement of the Record Retention Schedule.

For information about student and employee information which must remain confidential, see the "Access and Confidentiality" section below. 

Non-record material:  Non-record materials are records which are not the official copy. They may be destroyed without reference to the provisions of the records retention schedule.  Non-record material which is confidential must be shredded, pulped, or incinerated. If records are not confidential, they may be recycled or disposed of as trash.

Procedures:
  • Prior to the destruction date, the Archives sends a Records Destruction Authorization Form to the creating department informing them that the records have satisfied the retention period and are ready for destruction.
  • The department signs and dates the Records Destruction Form and returns it to the Archives.
  • The Archives arranges destruction of the records and notifies the department when the confidential destruction has been completed.
  • If records are involved in an audit, litigation, or ongoing administrative action, the department returns the unsigned Records Destruction Authorization form to the Archives with an explanation, and the retention period is extended.
  • Records that have met their retention requirement and are scheduled for destruction will be returned to the creating department if the department does not sign and return the authorization form and no special arrangements have been made for extending the retention period.

Access and Confidentiality 

Records stored in the Records Center are in the physical care of Archives and Records Management; however, legal custody of the records remains with the department, office, program, or person who created and maintained the records.  The creating department and the staff of Archives and Records Management have access to the records.  However, the creating department controls access to the records and the Archives refers any requests for access to records stored by the Archives to the creating department(s). 

Access to public records, especially to student records and personnel records, may be limited because of privacy concerns.  The confidentiality of records, access to public records, and the handling of requests for information are governed by several state and federal statutes and administrative rules. 

Procedures: 
  • For policies and procedures concerning access to personnel information, contact Human Resources.
  • For policies and procedures concerning access to student records, contact Enrollment Services.
  • Other questions about access and confidentiality issues should be referred to the college archivist or appropriate department.

Disaster Preparedness, Response and Recovery

Damage to records from water, fire and other natural and man-made disasters is inevitable. The Archives has a Disaster Response and Recovery Plan and the college Archivist is trained to handle damaged records on a limited basis.

Procedures: 
  • Contact the Archivist for advice and assistance in responding to an emergency and to recover records that have suffered water or other damage.
  • Contact the Archivist to set up vital records programs to insure the preservation of records that are needed to continue or re-establish operations following a disaster.

Organizational Changes 

The records of programs, departments, offices, or other academic or administrative units that have been eliminated, reassigned or combined with another unit should be transferred to the Archives for proper retention, disposition, and preservation. 

Media and Formats

Oregon public records laws [Oregon Revised Statutes 192.005 (5)]  define a public record as "a document, book, paper, photograph, file, sound recording, machine readable electronic record, or other material ... regardless of physical form."  The Archives accepts records in many different formats and has established guidelines in order to manage, store and preserve them.

Photographs (analog photos, negatives, slides)Sound & Video Recordings (audio tapes and cassettes, video tapes and cassettes, CDs, DVDs)

Formats:  The Archives accepts photographs and sound and video recordings in a variety of formats:

  • Traditional (analog) photographs and negatives
  • Digital photographs
  • Slides
  • Video and audio tapes, cassettes, and compact disks
  • Films

Criteria for selecting photographs and sound/video recordings

  • Good-quality in terms of content and composition and production values.
  • Depict activities, persons, buildings, objects, or scenes that have historical, administrative or legal value.
  • Record events, interviews, speeches, or other activities that have historical, administrative or legal value.

Procedures for sending photographs and sound/video recordings to the Archives

  • Consult the Archivist about whether the Archives can accept a specific format.
  • AV materials should be packed separately from paper records when transferred to the Archives.
  • AV materials must be listed on the Transmittal Form / Contents List with the following information:
    • Descriptive title/name
    • Subject of  photo or recording (name of person, place, department, activity)
    • Date of activity
    • Technical data if in electronic format
    • Creator (photographer, videographer, recorder)

Digital Photographs

Digital Images – Born Digital:  The Archives accepts digital photographs that were taken with a digital camera.  If printed copies of digital photographs exist, those copies may be transferred to the Archives along with the digital images.

Digital Images – Scanned:  The Archives will also accept digital photographs that have been scanned from an existing photograph.  The original analog photograph and its negative are the preferred format.  However, the Archives may choose to preserve digital / scanned images, along with the analog master/original copy, for exhibit, research and access purposes.

Criteria and Guidelines for Selecting, Capturing and Preserving Digital Photographs

  • Digital photographs should be captured in JPEG or TIFF format.
  • Images should be captured in a medium to high resolution.
  • Digital photographs should be stored in a non-proprietary format.
  • Digital photographs should be transferred to the Archives on good-quality CDs, floppy disks or as e-mail attachments.
  • Digital photographs are subject to archival evaluation standards and selection procedures.  Digital photographs should be of good quality in terms of content and composition.
  • CDs or disks must be labeled and consecutively numbered.
  • Digital photographs should be accompanied by an inventory listing the following information for each image:
    • Descriptive file or photograph title/name
    • Subject of  photo (name of person, place, department, or activity)
    • Date of activity / when the photo was taken (not the date copied, stored, or last opened)
    • Format (JPEG or TIFF)

Electronic Records

Public records laws and records management practices apply to all public records, regardless of format.  Oregon law includes electronic information and record formats in its definition of public records - ORS 192.005 (5).  Therefore, records retention guidelines and access to information contained in electronic formats are subject to the same provisions as paper-based records. The goal of electronic preservation is to preserve born digital materials in a usable, cost-effective manner.

Electronic Formats:  The Archives will accept records in electronic formats, such as:

  • text documents (word processing and desktop publishing files)
  • graphics (digital photographs and images)
  • electronic publications
  • web-based records

Retention & Accessibility:  Electronic records must be retained and accessible for as long as the records retention schedule mandates. They require routine system backup and periodic copying or migration to new hardware and software systems and storage media and formats.

Criteria for Selecting Electronic Records:

  • The records should have a permanent or long-term retention period as specified by the Records Retention Schedule.
  • The electronic format should be the official copy of the records.
  • The electronic format should provide ease of access and search capabilities.
  • A paper copy of the records is not available.
  • The records are in a format acceptable and usable by the Archives.
Procedures for Transferring Electronic Records to the Archives
  • Consult with the Archivist to make sure the electronic records meet the necessary criteria and are acceptable by the Archives.
  • Electronic records may be transferred to the Archives on disks, CDs, or as attachments to email.
  • Disks or CDs should be properly labeled and consecutively numbered.
  • Electronic records must be accompanied by a Transmittal Form / Contents List that includes:
    • File information
      • Type (eg. MS Word 2002)
      • Dates
      • Size (in KB)
      • Author or Creator
      • Number and type of media (CDs, floppy disks)
    • Content information
      • Department Name
      • Series Title
      • Dates
      • Complete list of file names

Administrative Systems and Databases

The records retention schedule and public records laws apply to information and records stored on large administrative and instructional systems and databases (including Banner).  These systems are not managed by the Archives.  Contact Computer Services for assistance in storing, preserving, and accessing information and records stored on these large systems.

Destruction of Confidential Electronic Records 

  • Electronic records that contain confidential information must be disposed of or destroyed in ways that protect confidentiality.
  • Diskettes should be destroyed.  Reformatting, deleting, or erasing files stored on disks does not ensure complete destruction of the information.
  • Hard drives should be reformatted or destroyed so that confidential information is totally obliterated.
  • Contact Computer Services or the college archivist for advice concerning destruction of confidential electronic records.

Document Imaging / Digital Imaging

Document or digital imaging systems that store digitized public records can be an excellent solution for managing information, for storing and preserving records and for providing access to records.  The nature of digital imaging technology and the rapid technological changes pose records management challenges.
The Oregon State Archives has issued rules governing digital imaging (OAR 166-017):

  • The life expectancy of the digital imaging system must be as long as, or longer than, the retention period of the records it stores.
  • Access to digitized records must be maintained for the length of the retention period.
  • All documents in a digital imaging system must be indexed and retrievable.
  • Any digital imaging system, equipment or software used to store or retrieve public records must adequately provide for the rights of the public to access and copy public records.
  • Public records with a scheduled retention period of less than 100 years may be stored on optical disks and the original record may be disposed of as long as the images are copied onto new optical disks after no more than ten years; images stored on optical disks must be recopied until the retention period of the original public record has been satisfied.
  • Public records with a scheduled retention period of more than 100 years may be stored on optical disk devices providing that the original records are retained in hard copy or on microfilm for the entire scheduled retention period.

E-mail 

  • Electronic mail is a public record.  E-mail is subject to retention guidelines based upon the information contained in the message (not on their electronic format).
  • E-mail messages may be deleted when they no longer have administrative value according to the provisions of the Records Retention Schedule.
  • E-mail messages that communicate policy or other information with a longer retention must be kept for the stated retention period.
  • The Archives does not preserve e-mail in electronic format. E-mail messages that require long-term or permanent retention should be printed onto paper and filed with regular office correspondence or administrative files.

Link to the E-Mail FAQ on the Oregon State Archives website for answers to frequently asked questions concerning e-mail.
 
Web Sites / Web-based Records & Publications

The Archives maintains a Web Archives for preservation of web sites that contain official college records and publications. 

Definitions

  • Web-based Records:  These are records that have traditionally been created and preserved in paper format and that are listed in record retention schedules with permanent or long-term retentions.  These types of records are now often posted on web sites and the web-based record may be considered the official copy of that record.  Examples of these records are audits, budgets, committee minutes and reports, and policy and procedure statements.
  • Web-based Publications:  Electronic versions of published information are now posted on web sites.  Examples of these types of publications are annual reports, directories, brochures, newsletters, college catalogs, class schedules, and syllabi.

Criteria for Selecting Web Sites for Preservation

  • Web sites contain records with administrative, legal, financial, or historical value.
  • Web-based records have long-term retentions as specified by the Records Retention Schedule.
  • Web sites contain records or publications that are official copies of those records.
  • Web sites contain records or publications that are not captured or preserved by traditional record-keeping systems.
  • The records and publications on a web site may be useful in serving the current or future informational needs of the college.
  • The records and publications on a web site may be the best source or preferred format for those records because they are searchable and provide efficient access to that information.
  • If the record or official copy of records or publications is available and accessible in paper format, the paper format becomes the official copy for preservation purposes and the web-based version is not preserved.
Procedures for Preserving Web Sites
  • When web sites are developed, web designers should take into consideration the preservation implications of their web sites.
  • Web content managers, the college webmasters, and the archivist consult to select web sites for preservation.
  • Capture the web sites on a CD-R (gold reflective surface, not compressed) and transfer to the Archives.
  • Management of web sites selected for preservation is transferred to the Web Archives and into the custody of the Archives.
  • Transfer to the Archives is documented with a log that contains management history, content, and technical data about the web sites.  Contact the Archivist for details about the log.

Maps, Posters, Architectural Drawings, and Other Oversize Records

  • The Archives accepts records in large paper formats such as maps, blue prints, architectural drawings, and posters.
  • Contact the Archivist for details and advice in preserving these types of records and transferring them to the Archives.

Micrographics 

  • Micrographics is an effective medium for the long-term preservation of public records.
  • Micrographics provides a number of benefits including storage security; easy recovery and retrieval in case of loss, theft, or damage; file integrity eliminating misfiling or alteration of information; economy and savings regarding storage costs; inexpensive duplication and distribution; and quick and accurate retrieval of information.
  • The Oregon State Archives has issued rules and standards (OAR 166-025)  concerning micrographics that "insure the informational content of public records is protected for the life of the record."
  • Contact the Archivist for advice concerning whether records should be microfilmed.
  • Contact the Micrographics specialist concerning the microfilming of records.

See also Archives.

Date Adopted: 
Saturday, May 1, 1999
Date Last Reviewed: 
Sunday, February 1, 2004