Proper storage of business records is essential to meet federal requirements and to ensure easy access to needed items within a reasonable period of time. Katy climate controlled storage facilities can help with added off-site space ideal for storing paper documents securely and safely. Here are six tips designed to keep your office neat and your company information safe, organized and easily accessible for future use.
Organizing Your Office
Choosing the right storage solutions for in-office use can help you to manage paperwork more effectively. Filing cabinets are a perennial favorite thanks to their ease of use and organizational capability. Arranging documents by date, client name or subject matter can allow easy retrieval for necessary information.
Maintaining Regulatory Compliance
Federal and state laws outline specific requirements for the retention of company documents. These recordkeeping regulations vary depending on the type of business. Government contractors and subcontractors may be subject to additional requirements. In general, federal law requires businesses to retain records for the following periods:
• Personnel records must be retained until seven years after the termination date.
• Hiring records are retained for at least two years after the employee joins the staff.
• Payroll records must be retained for three years.
• I-9 forms must be retained for three years. These records should not be retained for more than three years after the termination date.
• Medical and benefit records are generally retained for at least six years; however, this period is extended to 30 years in cases in which employees have been exposed to potentially hazardous or toxic materials.
In addition to these federal requirements, Texas statutes require employers to retain certain records for a specific period:
• Payroll records and unemployment tax records must be retained for four years to comply with Texas unemployment compensation law.
• Texas employers must maintain three years of benefit, payroll and leave documentation for staff members who take leave under the U.S. Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The time period for this retention requirement begins at the end of the FMLA leave.
• Documentation for retirement plans should be retained for six years.
• Personally identifiable health care information must be retained for six years and must be secured against unauthorized disclosure.
• Records related to OSHA compliance or investigations must be retained for at least five years.
• IRS records should be held for at least four years.
Maintaining compliance with these rules can help your company avoid difficulties with state and federal agencies.
Label and Box
Boxing up older records and labeling each box accurately can help your Houston business to retrieve documents more quickly and efficiently. Organizing records by type and date can save valuable time when searching for a specific document and can allow you to dispose of excess paperwork after the regulatory retention period has passed.
Select Sturdy Boxes
Many Houston office supply stores sell record boxes sized and designed to provide lasting protection for important documents. Houston, Katy and Cypress self storage facilities can also be a good source for these specialty boxes. By choosing the right storage boxes, you can prolong the life of your corporate records.
Choose Climate-Controlled Storage
Paper products can be sensitive to extremes of temperature and humidity. By working with an established Katy self-storage company, you can ensure the right climate controlled storage conditions to extend the life of your documents.
Store Sensitive Documents Securely
Financial, medical and employment records require special attention to maintain regulatory compliance. Keeping these documents in a secure Cypress mini storage facility can provide optimal protection for this information while keeping your office neat and functional.
Creating a strategy to manage excess paperwork in the workplace can help you reduce clutter and free up space for other activities. By enlisting the services of a professional Houston self storage firm to manage your business documentation, you can ensure full compliance with all applicable regulations while creating a more efficient working environment for your staff.