Destruction of temporary records

Temporary records can only be destroyed when they have reached the end of their required retention period, are no longer required for business use and are not the subject of current or pending litigation or Freedom of Information (FOI) requests.

Other disposal actions

Destroying records is one key disposal action for University records. Depending on the type of records you manage, you may also need to retain records in storage or transfer records.

Proof of destruction

A Destruction List should be created as part of the records destruction process to prove that destruction took place. The list will show that the records have been sentenced and have been retained for the required period of time according to the University Records Retention and Disposal Authority (RDA).

Important: Do not destroy/delete records until the Destruction List has been completed and has been approved by the records' Business Owner.

Destroying digitised records

It may be possible to destroy permanent hardcopy source records that were originally created after 1 January 2000, and which have been digitised.

See Digitisation for further information and consult with Records & Information for advice: records-info@unimelb.edu.au.

Destruction of digital records held in drives or non-Records Managed SharePoint sites

Follow these steps to destroy digital records on a network or portable drive, or a non-Records Managed SharePoint (RMSP) site:

  1. Complete a Records Destruction List to capture information about the records' titles, disposal classes, date ranges and destruction dates.
    • If working with large volumes of records, contact Records & Information (R&I) for help with creating a list using other methods (eg, drive analysis tool).
    • If you are unsure about how to assign the disposal classes for the records, see Using the University Records RDA for guidance.
  2. Seek approval of Records Destruction List by the records' Business Owner.
  3. Save the signed list to an appropriate location that is known and accessible to relevant staff in your business unit.
  4. Delete the records from the drive or non-RMSP site.

Note: If you are using a RMSP site, the disposal of your records (including destruction, retention and transfer) will be automatically managed.

Destruction of digital and hardcopy records managed in Content Manager

The process for destroying temporary records in Content Manager (CM) will be facilitated by Records & Information (R&I).

  1. R&I run annual reports to identify records that are eligible for destruction.
  2. R&I will prepare a list of records to be destroyed from CM which will be sent to the Business Owner for approval via email.
  3. The records Business Owner authorises destruction of the records.
  4. The approval for the destruction is captured into CM.
  5. R&I will securely destroy records in hardcopy format. Digital records will be deleted (image is removed/destroyed). However, metadata or details about deleted digital records (eg, title, date created, creator, etc) will remain in CM.

Note: If you want to destroy temporary digital records held in a different University system, please contact Records & Information for advice: records-info@unimelb.edu.au.

Destruction of hardcopy records

Follow these steps to destroy hardcopy records:

  1. Source a Confidential Document Disposal Bin. This KBA (accessible to University staff) outlines the process to use existing bins on campus or request bulk disposal if you have many records to destroy.
  2. Complete a Records Destruction List. If the record details are already recorded in an existing spreadsheet or an electronic version of a Box List, copy this information to the Records Destruction List.
  3. Seek approval of Records Destruction List by the records' Business Owner.
  4. Save the signed list to an appropriate location that is known and accessible to relevant staff in the business unit.
  5. Place the records in the Confidential Bin. When the bin fills up, submit a request to have it replaced with an empty bin.

Destruction of analog media records

Media such as DVDs, tapes and film cannot be placed in Confidential Document Disposal Bins and must be collected separately. Follow these steps to destroy physical media records:

  1. Submit a request for confidential media disposal. (Facilities will contact you to discuss availability and costing).
  2. Complete a Records Destruction List. If the record details are already recorded in an existing spreadsheet or an electronic version of a Box List, copy this information to the Records Destruction List.
  3. Seek approval of Records Destruction List by the records' Business Owner.
  4. Save the signed list to an appropriate location that is known and accessible to relevant staff in the business unit.
  5. Place the records in the assigned collection area/container and notify Facilities that the media is ready for collection.