Preparing Records for Retirement
Preparing your records efficiently is the most important step in the retirement process. The records you retire will serve as the Agency's official historical record of its actions, activities or decisions. Because the Agency may need the records to understand, evaluate or defend its, or your, actions, time spent preparing them will be repaid many times over if the Agency must retrieve them at a later date.
- Sort the records, removing and disposing of extra copies of documents, records that have a retention of five years or less, and any non-record materials, according to their records schedule. Since each box of records incurs storage costs, disposing of nonrecords before storage curbs Agency costs.
- Ensure the records are identified, separated, labeled and filed in either letter or legal size accordion or regular folders. Two general labeling rules will allow you to retrieve exact folders without confusion throughout their FRC lifespan:
- Give each folder a unique identifier and the appropriate file code designation.
- Label each folder with a descriptive file name. For example, use "General Correspondence: A F, 1996," not simply "Correspondence" as the folder title.
- Records with a retention of five years or less must be kept onsite until their retention period is reached.