Shredding Tips and Tricks for Important HR Documents

Feb 23, 2023

Companies store valuable information about their employees for various reasons. For instance, they may retain a worker’s address and Social Security Number for tax and identification purposes, and they typically store bank account details for direct deposit of salaries.

The HR department usually retains most documentation containing sensitive employee data. They’ll also have personal information concerning candidates who apply for jobs. However, companies don’t hire every applicant who applies, and existing workers may resign or retire.

Thus, appropriately disposing of sensitive information becomes necessary. HR departments shouldn’t hold on to documents forever. They need to shred and dispose of information that isn’t needed any longer. Here are a few tips to consider when shredding HR documents.

Define Your Retention and Shredding Policy

Business owners and HR managers should establish a retention and shredding policy. The retention policy should describe how long to retain documents before shredding them.

Federal laws define how long an organization must keep certain records. For example, the federal government requires employers to retain I-9 forms for three years following the hire date or one year after the worker leaves.

Employers should keep time sheets for two years and pay stubs for three years. Generally, organizations should keep payroll registers for four years. However, some organizations keep their payroll records longer than legally required as an extra safeguard.

Regularly Shred Your Documents

Organizations should keep a regular schedule for shredding activities. Depending on the size of your HR department and the number of documents it saves, you might need to shred documents monthly, quarterly, or annually.

To ensure you adhere to your shredding policy, schedule the days you plan to shred documents well in advance. That way, your HR team will have time to review their files and paperwork and decide which documents meet the requirements for shredding.

Use an Index System for Your Documents

HR departments should use a clear index system that stipulates the documents that will need future shredding. For instance, they might consider saving documents by type rather than bundling all of an employee’s HR documents in the same file.

I-9 files can be held in a single cabinet, organized by date. Similarly, managers can keep payroll documentation by pay period. That way, when it comes time to shred the documents, it will be a simple exercise to remove files that are past the required retention date.

Work with a Reliable Shredder

It may seem simple to handle the shredding independently, but a vendor is the better option unless you have relatively few documents to shred.

Suppliers understand the rules governing document shredding and will ensure their proper destruction. You won’t need to worry about a potential security breach that could put your employees’ personal information at risk.

Get Help with HR Document Destruction

Secure Enterprise Asset Management (SEAM) offers on-site document shredding services in North Dakota and South Dakota. Our team can complete the destruction of your company’s sensitive data according to your needs. Contact us today to obtain a quote.

SEAM provides IT recycling and data destruction services including onsite shredding and hard drive wiping to South Dakota, North Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, and Nebraska.

Schedule a pickup or contact us for more information.