A vital record is any recorded information that is identified as essential for the continuation or survival of the organization if a disaster strikes. A very small percentage of an organization's records are vital -- estimates range from 2 to 7 percent. (ARMA)
To determine whether a record you own is vital, ask yourself:
Is this record necessary in order for the University to resume operations?
Is this record necessary to protect assets, to protect the legal or financial status of the University, or to preserve the rights and obligations of employees, customers, stockholders, and citizens?
Are there other sources -- inside or outside of the University -- from which this record can be retrieved?
Does this information reside in more than one medium?
If Princeton were to experience a disaster such as a severe hurricane that flooded buildings and destroyed computing equipment and file storage areas, would the University be able to resume all operations without these records?
Vital University records must be managed carefully to ensure their protection and their accessibility. If you believe that some of your records are vital or if you need assistance assessing your records, please contact Princeton University Records Management.