Human Resources records management policy

The Human Resources Records Management Policy ["the policy”] provides strategic direction on how the Section manages the records that relate to its core functions. The policy is based on the premise that a record's format does not affect its retention period or how it is managed, so does not distinguish between electronic and manual formats. The policy is built around compliance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Data Protection Act 1998. Responses to requests for information under both pieces of legislation are made on the assumption that this policy is followed thoroughly.

Policy coverage

The policy provides a specific, separate procedure document for the Human Resources within the HR Section. This describes the Office's core functions, the records it manages, and provides direction on the management, retention, and disposal of the records. Following the policy's review, it is expected that it will cover the Learning and Development Office and Occupational Health Service.

Please note that, for the purposes of this policy, the term "academic year” is defined as the period from 1 October to 30 September inclusive.

Records retention schedule

The policy is adhered to in conjunction with the separate Human Resources Records Retention Schedule (RRS). The RRS provides a structured framework for the retention and disposal of all records managed by the Human Resources Office by providing a retention period for every record or set of records relating to its core functions.

Records disposal process

All records within the Human Resources Section are disposed of in accordance with the University Records Disposal PolicyUniversity Records Disposal PolicyUniversity Records Disposal Policy.

Records management responsibility

In accordance with the University's standard records management practice, the Governance Office is responsible for the development and general promotion of the policy. Ultimate responsibility for adherence to the policy within the Human Resources Section, including the Data Protection and Freedom of Information obligations, lies with the Director of Human Resources.

On the basis of the information and guidance provided by the Governance Office, all staff within the Human Resources Section must:

  • ensure records are held on the most appropriate medium for the task they perform;
  • identify those records that are vital to the operation of the University, and ensure they are preserved appropriately;
  • manage all records in accordance with the Human Resources Section's records retention schedule; and
  • dispose of and/or destroy confidentially those records that have reached the end of their retention period.

The Section also nominates an individual to join the Records Management Network. As part of this Network, the individual is responsible for liaising with the Information Manager on all matters relating to records management. Where necessary, the nominee reports directly to the Director of Human Resources on records management issues.

Archive policy

The Human Resources Section is responsible for ensuring records identified for permanent retention are archived in the appropriate way. All archive material is subject to a five year review to ensure unnecessary material is not retained indefinitely. The material is always accompanied by a completed standard archive label, which provides the following information:

  • Date of archive;
  • University Officer responsible for archiving the material;
  • Description of the material; and
  • Review date.

In conjunction with the Governance Office, the Human Resources Section is responsible for ensuring that archive material is stored appropriately and in a way which maximises the capacity of available space.

Freedom of Information Act 2000

The policy ensures that the Human Resources Section is able to comply fully with the provisions and spirit of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. The Act enables individuals to access information held by the University, subject to specific exemptions. The policy provides direction on the management of information within the Section to ensure that it is as accessible as possible to those who request to see it. The policy also ensures the University destroys relevant information at the appropriate time.

Data Protection Act 1998

In accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998, all personal data within records managed by the Human Resources Section is held fairly, securely and for specific purposes. It is managed faithfully in accordance with the Act and the University's data protection policies. Personal information is always destroyed confidentially at the end of its retention period. Disclosures of personal data are only made in accordance with the provisions of the Act and only to members of staff who need the information to carry out their duties or to others connected with the University for University-related activities or events. Data subject rights are maintained at all times.

Policy review

In accordance with the University's standard records management practice, the policy is reviewed every three years to ensure it meets effectively the University's operational and legal requirements.

Policy Agreed: Spring 2005
Policy Effective from: October 2005
Policy due for renewal: Spring 2008

Further information

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Freedom of Information Team Information is available on request.