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Durham University

Information Governance

Line Managers Guide to Employment Records Retention

Line managers are expected to manage employment records in compliance with legislation and University policy and procedure, in conjunction with the University’s Retention Schedule https://www.dur.ac.uk/ig/rim/retention/.

The list below covers the types of information we believe may be held by line managers but is not an exhaustive list. As a general guide information should be destroyed or archived as follows (please do not send information to HR unless otherwise stated below). If you wish to retain information beyond its retention period, you may do so if you have a robust, defensible reason (‘just in case I need it’ is not considered by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to be a robust business reason):

SUBJECT OF THE RECORDS

RETENTION PERIOD

DISPOSAL METHOD

CITATION

Return to work interviews (following sickness absence)

End of employment +6yrs (send to HR at end of employment)

Archive

1992 c.4, IR CA30

Occupational Health Letters/Absence Process documentation (review meeting docs etc.)

End of employment +6yrs (send to HR at end of employment)

Archive

1992 c.4, IR CA30

Sick Notes

Original to go to Payroll, copies should not be kept in depts.

Destroy

Internal guidelines

ADR forms (where no performance issues identified)

Superseded +3yrs

Destroy

JISC

ADR forms (where performance issues are identified)

Superseded +4yrs

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Performance related documentation

Resolution of issue +3yrs

Destroy

Job Applications and associated paperwork for departmental recruitment campaigns

Shouldn’t be held in depts. – HR hold master records – any documents must be forwarded to HR at time of recruitment

Return to HR

Internal guidelines

References provided for past employees

1yr

Destroy

JISC

Contracts/Changes to Contracts

Shouldn’t be held in depts. – HR hold master records

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Informal meeting notes concerning behaviour at work

2yrs following resolution of issue

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Informal performance management records

Resolution of issue +2 years

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Formal performance management records

Superseded +3yrs

Destroy

Internal guidelines

APC application forms/CVs and outcomes

Do not retain - previous 3 years’ of applications and outcomes held in HR

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Files notes regarding conversations with staff

Resolution of concern/issue +1yr

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Informal 1:2:1s

1yr

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Personal staff information – passports, birth certificates, driving licences etc.

Must only be held in HR

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Grievance/Disciplinary notes

Until end of case (master copy held in HR)

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Reports from Workforce Planning and Finance

Until reason for request has been satisfied

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Probation review forms

Until confirmed in post + 1 year

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Training records

Attendance +1yr

Destroy

JISC

Flexible working arrangements

End of arrangement +2yrs

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Fixed term contract documentation

Do not retain – kept in HR

Destroy

Internal guidelines

ECP/Disc. Award documents

Forms and outcome letters held in HR

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Formal letters of concern

Cessation of concern +3yrs

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Informal letters regarding wellbeing

Cessation of concern +2yrs

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Certificates – Graduation, professional membership, first aid

Retain first aid certs whilst current. Professional memberships and qualifications should be held in central HR file

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Probation Reports

Held in HR

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Psychometric/360 reports for development activities

6 months from date of event

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Honorary & Visiting title applications

Held in HR

Destroy

Internal guidelines

Research Leave Applications

Until end of period of leave

Archive

Internal guidelines

Resignations/Leavers forms

Do not retain – kept in HR

Destroy

Internal guidelines

All personal data should be kept securely – for hard copies this should be in a lockable cabinet with access restricted to only those who require it for a lawful purpose. Electronic copies should be password protected and then deleted at the appropriate time.

If there is any doubt as to whether information can, or should, be destroyed please refer to the University’s Retention Schedule (https://www.dur.ac.uk/ig/rim/retention/) or contact Information Governance Unit at information.governance@durham.ac.uk