Men in an Office Training class, School of Commerce, ca. 1923. Office training was not limited to women. Anyone seeking a bachelor's degree in the School of Commerce was required to take at least twelve credits of Office Training classes -- six credits each of Typing and Office Methods & Appliances. [OSU Archives #882.]
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Every office and department on campus is faced with problems of storage space, as well as decisions about which records to keep and which to discard. The Oregon State University Archives and Records Management Program assists offices and departments with these problems and decisions. It strives to achieve economy and efficiency in the creation, use, maintenance, and disposal of public records. Records management also affords legal protection for the institution as well as satisfying federal and state statutory requirements.
After personnel costs, records keeping is the largest expenditure of government. Record creation, maintenance, filing, office storage space, filing supplies, and equipment all contribute to the high cost of keeping records. Certain strategies can greatly reduce these costs.
Good records management makes records keeping easier and more productive. Having fewer files in the office filing system makes individual record retrieval and refiling easier and faster, and reduces the number of misfiles. Nearly 14 percent of all records are misfiled at some time, at a cost of more than $165 per misfile. A file check-out procedure for both active and inactive files also makes refiling easier and more accurate.
Records management reduces nuisance litigation by reducing the quantity of records that attorneys may subpoena through the legal process of discovery. Following records retention schedules assures courts, litigants, and auditors that records are being disposed of properly and in a routine manner, not maliciously or in a capricious way.
Records management is mandated by state law. Several state statutes and administrative rules pertain to public records: