Records Management FAQ

What is a public record?
In Wisconsin, public records include all materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics made or received by any state employee while in connection with the transaction of public business.

What isn't a public record?
In Wisconsin, a record does not include duplicates, notices, invitations, routing slips, and envelopes, personal material or drafts prepared for a supervisor.

What about electronic records?
No exception. In Wisconsin, databases, imaged records, electronic documents and email are all public records if they are connected to the transaction of public business. This includes voicemail, text messages and instant messages.

What about destroying records in my office?
If they are personal records or non-records, they should be destroyed when they are no longer useful.
If they are public records, it's illegal for any UWO employee to destroy a public record in their office without an approved record schedule (RDA).

How does an office establish an approved record schedule?
Contact Joshua Ranger, UWO's records officer, to begin the process.

Why is records management located in Polk Library?
Records management is part of the University Archives Program (P334) which seeks to preserve historically significant records. Records management helps to identify these materials. Most records, however, are not historically significant and need to be scheduled for eventual destruction.