OLD RECORDS NEVER DIE-THEY'RE
JUST FILED AWAY
Here is a workable retirement
plan for those paper records.
by John N. Bell
"D ecords management is not a subject that stirs men's souls. It does
A** not have the romantic flavor of "Selective Inventory Management,"
"Profitability Accounting" or "Electronic Data Processing."
Yet firms that have a records management program are enthusiastic
about it as a real cost-cutter.
The term records management is defined here as the organization for
control, storage and timely destruction of all business records. This
article presents an over-all view of the pertinent points which should
be considered in designing a records management program and some
suggested steps to carry it out.
Paper records have a regular life cycle—birth, working life, retirement
and death. They are costly at every stage. Cost estimates of preparing
a business letter range from $1.50 to $2.00—add to this the
costs of handling and storage (up to $300 per four-drawer file per
year). Based on national averages, a Dayton client estimates that
paper creation and storage costs them roughly $7 million annually, a
figure equal to about half their tax bill in 1959.
There are several well-recognized symptoms of a records management
problem. Requisitions for more filing cabinets, requests for additional
clerical personnel, poor filing efficiency and poor housekeep-
JUNE 1960 17