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TOP-RECDS: Records Retention


SCOPE: This procedure covers the maintenance and retention of company records.

1 All Managers and Supervisors While having control of any company records All files in department Ensure that all records are legible and clearly identified as to what they address (for example, die number, purchase order number, etc.); keep them filed so that they face minimal deterioration and exposure to loss and so that they are easily accessed when needed. Records well maintained in individual departments and storage room.
2 All Managers and Supervisors As desire to move older records out of files in department Records; retention list below Identify which records are to be moved out and check to see which records must still be retained (the list below gives the minimum retention times, but call upon the CFO if uncertain about a situation); destroy any records that are beyond minimum retention and have no reason to be saved; turn over to Accounting Manager any records to be stored or microfilmed. Records identified as to which are to be kept in department, which are to be destroyed and which are to be given to Accounting Manager for storage.
3 Accounting Manager As records provided by Managers and Supervisors for storage Records; retention list below Have records boxed and stored in conditions listed in step 1, marking retention date on each box; records may be microfilmed with the microfilm retained as described. Records in long-term storage well maintained.
4 All Managers Each November Records; retention list below Destroy any records that are beyond minimum retention and have no reason to be saved; Go through documents or files; remove all files to be stored or destroyed. Destroy any document removed by one of the following methods: Running through a paper shredder (paper), incinerate (microfiche), breaking (disk/hard drive); erase from server (may require IT Manager's help). Documents or files removed, stored or destroyed. Data erased from server.
5 Accounting Manager Each December Archived records Verify that all managers have completed Step 4. Destroy originals after the minimum retention per the retention list and the records (original or microfilm). Archives cleaned up and documents or files destroyed. Data erased from server.


The minimum retention period for most quality related records is listed with the individual record in TOP-DLIST. Some accounting, personnel, and other records are also found in TOP-DLIST with their respective retention period stated. In those cases that a specific record is not found in TOP-DLIST, the minimum retention periods stated in the table below will prevail. Where record qualifies for multiple categories, longest retention prevails, if the retention period for any record in question, the Controller decides.

  • Quality-related -- Not specified in TOP-DLIST 5 years
  • Accounting-related -- Financial (supporting audited statements) 20 years
  • Bank statements and reconciliations 7 years
  • Purchasing & inventory (except material quality) 7 years
  • Accounts payable 6 years
  • Shipping memos 6 years
  • Personnel-related -- Payroll (except time cards and hammer logs) 10 years beyond termination
  • Health, safety and accident 10 years
  • Personnel (except health, safety and accident) 6 years
  • Other -- Computer backups See TOP-SYSTM
  • General correspondence 2 years
  • For suppier retention See TOP-POSUP

For information on a document or record, including definition, primary responsibility and retention, refer to the Document and Record Master List.

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