Do businesses need to keep physical copies of documents?

office documents

Document and archive storage is an important consideration for all businesses as it provides you with a safe and secure location to keep your businesses paperwork. But do you really need a physical record of your company documents, and how long do you need to store them. As one of the leading storage companies in the Leicestershire, SUPERSTORE Self Storage provides document and archive storage for businesses of every size. Here are a few tips for new and existing customers:

The importance of physical documentation

With many businesses moving to a paperless work environment, much of your paperwork can be saved in an electronic format, so long as all the information is properly captured. However, while this may be a convenient method of recording key expenses, it is not fool-proof. Servers can crash, computers can be stolen, and data can be hacked or corrupted. For this reason, many companies prefer a duplicate physical record that can be held in archive storage.

Which business documents need to be kept

The documents you need to keep hold of will vary depending on the nature of your business. These are some of the most common business records that you are expected to retain.

PAYE records: this includes all payments made to your employees, plus details of any deductions and statutory payments.

Income: this includes everything from till rolls, banks statements, and sales invoices to accounts records, cash receipts, and paying-in slips.

Outgoings: this includes purchase invoices and receipts, bank and credit card statements, motoring expenses (including mileage records), chequebook stubs, and evidence of cash purchases.

Assets and liabilities: if you run a limited company, you need to keep a record of any liabilities and assets that are held in the companies name, including detailed accounts and revenue.

VAT records: this includes both VAT invoice and sale purchases, as well as import and export paperwork.

CIS records: Contractors working under the Construction Industry Scheme must keep full records of payments, deductions, and material purchases made by subcontractors.

How long should I keep my business documents?

Most tax documents and bank statements need to be retained for at least three years from the date of filing. Detailed accounts are normally kept for six years, while employee documents are kept for seven. Some companies choose to retain their paperwork for longer than this, as it can provide important evidence or protection, later down the line. One of the benefits of document and archive storage is that you can continue to store your documents for as long as you choose, expanding the size of your storage unit, if needed.

Keeping your physical documents safe

If you have enough room on-site, you can always keep your records in filing cabinets at your place of work. Of course, with many modern offices, space is at a premium and the larger your business, the more that space will be taken up with physical records. A more efficient solution is to transfer your paperwork to a document and archive storage facility. Your records will be kept in a safe environment, under lock and key, until they are needed. You (or a member of your team) will be able to access your records whenever you need to.

Get in touch

If you’re looking for safe, secure, and reliable document storage in Leicester, contact SUPERSTORE Self Storage today. Call us on 0116 365 3001 for a free, no-obligation quote.

Posted in Document Archive Storage.