Employee Files

You're responsible for maintaining files for each employee in your department. This involves maintaining existing employee files, creating employee files for new hires, and retaining all former employees' files for appropriate retention period.

What to Include in Employee Files

The department employee file should include only items that are job related. After-hours behavior, criminal background records, personal finances, family background, club memberships, religious affiliations, union memberships, and political beliefs should never be kept in employee files. Items about employees' medical history need to be kept separately from the employee files—keep medical information in medical files with access limited to a need-to-know basis.

File Retention and Disposition

You must retain departmental employee files and departmental medical files for five years from the date of an employee’s separation from the university. Once the retention period has been met, the departmental employee files and medical files can be disposed using the proper procedure. For further information, see the Records Management Services website, or contact the Office of Accounting at 512-232-5647.

Retention Period

All of the individual records retained in the departmental employee file have a retention requirement equal to or less than the retention requirement of the employee file as a whole. Departments have the option to hold all of the contents of the departmental employee folder for the full retention period of five years after separation, or they may opt to dispose of the contents in accordance with the retention requirements of each individual document. If you do choose to manage some of the contents of the departmental employee file separately, you must establish a consistent practice. For example, if you decide to dispose of all performance evaluations when they have met their required retention of three years, you must apply that retention consistently for all evaluations for all employees in the department.

Requests to View Employee Records

The department may allow a current employee to view his or her employee record. However, former employees and other parties must request access through the Open Records process. If you receive a request for employee records, you should immediately forward it to the Office of the Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for handling.

Employee File Contents

The following table outlines what paper documents belong in employee files, and which documents should be kept in the HR employee file, the departmental employee file, or both. . For information about records not listed here, see the Records Management Services website or contact the Human Resource Service Center.

Document Where to keep the Original Where to keep the Copy
Online employment application Retained Online Department Employee File

Student/Non-Benefits Eligible Employment application

Department Employee File


Resume and related documents such as examples of work, letters of recommendation, etc. Department Employee File  
New employee documents such as offer of employment letter, acceptance letter, etc. Department Employee File  
Supporting documents related to appointments, promotions, reclassifications, etc. Department Employee File  
Electronic Employment Eligibility Verification (I-9) Electronic I-9 System  
Ethics Statement Receipt (if paper) Department Employee File  
Selective Service Eligibility and Verification Form (if paper) Department Employee File  
Background Check Request Form (if paper) Department Employee File  
Employee Compliance Guide Acknowledgement Form (if paper) Department Employee File  
Veteran Status Information (if paper) Department Employee File  
Employee Biographical Information (if paper) Department Employee File  
Telecommuting Agreement Department Employee File  
Transfer of leave/state service from other Texas state agency or university HR Employee File  
Position/job description and performance expectations Department Employee File  
Insurance claim information HR Medical File  
Insurance enrollment information HR Employee File  
Retirement programs enrollment information HR Employee File  
Outside Employment Form Department Employee File  
Personnel action forms Departmental Employee File  
Disciplinary or corrective actions, including records of performance counseling Department Employee File  
Letters of complaint and letters of compliment Department Employee File  
Performance evaluations Department Employee File  
Training records Department Employee File  
Health/medical documents (includes Sick Leave Pool application, Disability Claim Forms, Reasonable Accommodation documents, FMLA documents, WCI documents, etc.) HR Medical File  
Grievances and responses Department Employee File  
Time cards and timesheets (if paper) Department Employee File  
Leave requests Department Employee File  
Doctor's notes to support absences due to health/medical situations Department Medical File  
Resignation or termination letter Department Employee File