The full story
About the Steering Group
Steps to follow
1. This document sets out the proposed procedure for establishing retention
schedules for all types of records within the University.
2. The basic steps are as follows:
- The Steering Group identifies a record series to be added
to the retention schedule.
- The Steering Group considers the record series, seeks to
describe it carefully enough for others to be able to understand what
is meant by the series, and formulates a proposed retention policy.
(This stage can take place iteratively among members of the Group.)
- The Registrar is consulted about the proposal and gives his
approval in principle. (If he will not do this, the item goes back to
- The University Records Manager/Archivist publishes the proposal
(generally as part of a reasonable group of items) on the University
web-site, and e-mail circulars are sent out inviting comment by a given
date (normally about a two working weeks away).
- If no significant adverse comment is received, the proposal
is signed off by the Registrar. (If significant problems do arise, the
item goes back to step b.)
- The University Records Manager/Archivist publishes the retention
policy on the University web-site as a formal University decision.
- Any minor editorial changes to approved record series retention
policies (e.g., updating of cross references, adjustment of responsiblities,
clarification of definition to reflect record use, etc.) are carried
out by the Records Manager as and when required.
- Very occasionally significant amendments to an approved record
series retention policy may be necessary (e.g., as a result of
a change in relevant legislation). Proposed amendments of this kind,
drawn up in collaboration with the appropriate record creator/user,
are submitted to the Registrar for approval and published as in step
- All approved record series retention policies are reviewed
by the Steering Group, and any relevant interested parties, as a matter
of course every five years. Any amendments made as a result of this
regular review are approved by the Registrar, and published as in step
3. In the course of the steps identified in 2, the Steering Group seeks:
- To specify clearly the types of documents (or electronic
files) deemed to be included in the record series.
- To identify clearly the purposes which the record series
serves and the periods over which it is expected to do so.
- To identify areas where the records possibly in the series
in question might overlap with other records series, such that special
guidance on implementation might be needed.
- To consider whether the proposed retention policy imposes
obligations on University staff (e.g., "... must
be destroyed ... years after the student graduates or leaves")
or offers only guidance (e.g., "... may be destroyed
... years after the student graduates or leaves").
- To identify who is responsible for the implementation of
policy in relation to each record series.
- To identify, in the light of c. and e. whether a timescale
for implementation may need to be specified, or whether a transitional
period might be needed.