This is the third and final part on strategic document management. In the first two parts we learned how to start with Docsvault so you can manage your documents and files effectively. In this part, we will learn how to manage your records, so you can achieve regulatory compliance too.

Physical Records Management

The first step is to decide retention period for all physical documents. The retention periods can be determined by referring your state laws and industry guidelines. Then you must store all your documents in neatly labeled boxes of filing cabinets. Also give a name, number and description to each record.

Once your physical records are neatly organized, the records manager can then set various retention schedules from the Records Retention console in Docsvault. Now new records can be entered along with details such as name and description of record, record series, base date for disposition, volume of records, storage location etc. If you wish to hold records from disposition, enter Hold Type and Hold Reason. A unique Record ID is automatically created for each record. This Record ID can be further used for tracking & searching this record.

If you wish to circulate physical records within the office or with external users, you can even create a list of such users/entities in Circulation Settings. This can be done by adding details of users such as name, email address, phone and notes if any and setting due date. Automated email reminders can also be sent to users who have checked out records.

While naming and numbering physical records, remember to maintain consistency everywhere. Also, scan all physical records and maintain a digital copy of each record for safekeeping.

Digital Records Management:

The laws of records retention apply to electronic or digital records as well. Documents such as emails, PDF documents, voicemails, word documents, spreadsheets, web content, forms etc. are all treated as records and must be retained for minimum retention period as per applicable laws.

In order to manage digital records, first give the responsibility to a capable person and give them the right to create records. Only authorized person with this right can assign retention schedule to a digital file. Thus only the necessary files will be recorded.

While creating records, name and describe them properly. Select the record series from a drop-down list and enter a base date from which the disposition date will be calculated.

Records Management has become a mainstay of regulatory compliance in almost all industries. You need successful records management system in your organization for compliance with HIPAA, ISO 9001 and FDA. Docsvault offers not only comprehensive document management but also tools for records management so you can achieve desired compliances.

Also, check Part 1 and Part 2 of Strategic Document Management