Records Retention

You need record retention guidelines – from organizing personnel files and electronic records retention policies to control document management and more.

Business Management Daily provides personnel records retention guidelines, helping you to improve your hard-copy and electronic record retention.

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Employers have a duty to protect their employees from identity theft. The federal Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (FACTA) says employers that negligently or purposely let employees’ personally identifiable data fall into the wrong hands can face fines of up to $2,500 per infraction. Here are six tips on developing a data security strategy:

Question: “I’m concerned that my new boss may have unrealistic expectations about my abilities.  After joining this company, I worked for three managers who all gave me outstanding appraisals.  However, my most recent supervisor, “Ms. Jones,” decided to lay me off. Fortunately, I have been offered a position by a manager in another department, “Mr. Smith.”  After hearing about this, Ms. Jones said, “Mr. Smith will soon find out that you don’t walk on water.”  When I mentioned this remark to the HR manager, she said the glowing reviews in my personnel file create the impression that I can do anything. I asked if these comments could be removed to avoid misleading people, but she said no. Now I’m worried about disappointing Mr. Smith and losing another job. How can I lower his expectations?” — JPK

True or false: Employees are either creative or they’re not—creativity isn’t a skill you can teach. False. Managers can play a key role in creating an environment in which employees will want to look for new ideas. Share this article with your supervisors to help tap employee creativity.

Imagine this nightmare scenario: You’ve contracted with a vendor to enter personnel data into a new computer system, including employees' Social Security numbers, addresses, names of dependents, health records and bank account routing numbers. Then the vendor notifies you that employee data was somehow stolen or lost. What do you do?

Q. One of our employees has asked to review his personnel file. Must we grant his request?

Q. I recently fired an employee for performance problems. At the end of the termination meeting, he asked for a copy of his personnel file. Do I have to give discharged employees copies of their personnel files?

When a secretary posted a question on our Admin Pro Forum recently, she heard plenty of advice from admins who have trouble getting supervisors to adhere to deadlines. Here's a sampling of their “been-there-done-that” advice:

American workers can access the Internet, e-mail, instant messaging and other forms of electronic communications from anywhere at anytime. While electronic communication helps people do their jobs, it also leaves a trail. A telephone conversation relies on the memory of two participants, but e-mail and IM discussions can be preserved for years to come. And, given the casual way so many people fire off e-mail these days, that can spell legal trouble for employers.

Move over, Google. Microsoft grabs tech headlines this month by adding zippy new features to its Internet Explorer browser. Here are four cool tricks that will save time for you and your employees.

What's a smart HR professional to do when his or her employer is sued and the records you thought would back up management are gone? You can still save the day by locating different electronic or paper correspondence that supports your decisions ...