Your business has decided to take a step towards securing valuable and sensitive information it maintains; excellent move. But for some New Jersey organizations, preparing for the shred truck to arrive, or preparing to take your documents to the shredding facility can be overwhelming, especially if your office is less organized than you might like.
The first helpful step in preparing for your upcoming purge is to implement a document disposal and retention policy if you do not already have one. If your business doesn’t have this sort of protocol, here are some tips on how to go about implementing one:
- Having a group that oversees the process of creating the policy is most ideal. Giving the power to a group spreads responsibility over a broader number of people, reducing the likelihood of conflict of interest from interfering.
- Understanding what is already in your backup recovery system or archive (if you have one) provides an excellent starting point to determine what actions, if any, need to happen before implementing the protocol.
- Make 100% sure that you are aware of what can be destroyed, what should be retained and for how long according to applicable federal state laws. The IRS, for example, lists the following requirements for tax records:
- Keep records for 3 years if situations (4), (5), and (6) below do not apply to you.
- Keep records for 3 years from the date you filed your original return or 2 years from the date you paid the tax, whichever is later if you file a claim for credit or refund after you file your return.
- Keep records for 7 years if you file a claim for a loss from worthless securities or bad debt deduction.
- Keep records for 6 years if you do not report income that you should report, and it is more than 25% of the gross income shown on your return.
- Keep records indefinitely if you do not file a return.
- Set guidelines for determining how to destroy documents that are to be destroyed.
- Communicate the new protocol to all staff. This is arguably the most important step, as a protocol is useless if only a few employees know about it!
Once you have implemented your policy and have your documents that are to be destroyed, the process becomes pretty straight forward. For a purge service, all you have to do is bring the documents to us, or give us a call and we will come to you!
If your business decides to implement a scheduled service, the process only becomes simpler. When you are determining which documents to destroy all you have to do is put them in the designated locked collection bins placed in your office by us, and we will periodically come to empty the bins and destroy all the documents on-site.
No matter which option your business goes for, you will receive a Certificate of Destruction upon the completion of your destruction services. If your New Jersey business is ready to get secured and get shredding, give Security Shredding a call today!