Personnel files are great.
All important employee documents are kept in one neat folder. With a little bit
of organization it’s easy to find information about performance, training and
past work experience. Personnel files can also be black holes where the wrong
items end up and cause headaches.
It’s a good practice to
comply with EEOC guidelines for identifying categories for EEO-1 reports by
using a simple self identification form. What do you do with these forms after
they are completed? The information is logged into your payroll/HRIS system to
make it easy to complete the EEO-1. Great, but you still have that piece of
paper. It seems logical that it just goes into the personnel file in case you
need it again. Wrong, when it is in the personnel file it can be seen by
someone who is making employment decisions, “I never knew that Fred was of
mixed racial heritage, he looks white to me.”
What about all of the
information about benefits. Did you know
that it needs to be kept in a separate file?
Don’t forget all of the security issues.
There is so much identifying information in personnel and benefits files
how do you keep it all protected from potential identity theft?
Those self identification
forms for the EEO-1 report; shred them or store them separately. Once you log
the information I don’t know why you would need them again. Some people are
afraid to toss any personal information and may keep it too long. Others toss
too much and fail to shred or pulverize. Don’t let a cleaning crew find a
treasure trove of employee information in your trash.
I’ll be answering more of
these questions during a web conference Legal &
Practical Record-Keeping Strategies: How To Protect Your Organization From
Fines, Penalties, & Identity Theft on Tuesday, October 7th beginning at Eastern Time. Join me to get the information you need to clean up those