Records Management:: Frequently Asked Questions

Records Management FAQs

These FAQs reflects the most up-to-date information on the Records Management program of the Office of the Secretary of State. Administrative personnel involved with the maintenance, storage, retrieval, and tracking of records will find these FAQs a convenient reference when using records management services.

We hope you will find answers to the most common questions concerning the records management program including general information, records consultation and scheduling, state records center services, and imaging services provided by the Records Management Division to state agencies.


General Information

Records Consultation and Retention Schedules

State Records Center Services

Imaging Services


Imaging Services

Q.  What services are available?
A.  The Imaging Section creates microfilm from paper originals. The original silver halide film is stored in a climate controlled vault for preservation and duplication purposes. A pdf of the microfilm roll is returned to the agency for daily use.

Q.  Where is the Imaging Section located?
A.   The Imaging Section is located on the first floor of the James C. Kirkpatrick State Information Center at 600 West Main Street, in Jefferson City, Missouri.

Q.  What records may be microfilmed?
A. Permanent or historically significant records may be microfilmed to prolong their lifespan. Other records may be approved for microfilming, based on a number of factors. It is not cost effective to microfilm records with a retention period less than 60 years.

Records filmed by the Imaging Section must be approved by the Director of Records Management and the records must appear on an approved records retention schedule.

Q.  How do I prepare records to be microfilmed?
A.  Documents must be specially prepared for filming. Please see the Instructions for Records to be Microfilmed

It will be important to consult with your records analyst and with the Imaging Manager in advance of beginning a new microfilm project.

Q.  Where do I send my records to be microfilmed?
A.  Records must be placed in approved records storage boxes, entered into the records tracking system and labeled correctly. The agency will need to arrange for their delivery to 600 W. Main Jefferson City, Missouri 65102. Arrangements can be made for pickup services if an agency is located in Jefferson City.

Q.  What type of paperwork is required by Imaging Services to create microfilm?
A.  Each group of boxes to be filmed must have a Microfilm Request Form sent to the Imaging Services Office before the records can be filmed. Only records with the same record series can be included on a single microfilm request form. Groups with different record series will require separate forms. Specifics will be worked out between the agency and Imaging Manager, depending on the particular filming project.

Q.  How long will it take to complete my microfilm project?
A.  Microfilm projects are processed in the order that the records are received. Your film will usually be completed in about 6 months, depending on the current workloads and the staff availability of the section.

Q.  What if I need multiple copies of microfilm?
A.  Agencies receive a pdf copy of the film stored in the vault. Should the pdf accidentally be deleted, the stored film can be scanned and a new pdf generated.

Q.  What happens to the paper records after the film is made?
A.  Records will be stored in the State Records Center prior to filming. Agencies have 6 weeks to review their pdfs after the imaging project is completed. If no changes are required, the paper version of the records will be destroyed.

Q.  How long will microfilm last?
A. The silver halide original will last up to 500 years in the proper storage conditions, before it needs to be duplicated.

Q.  Are digital imaging services available?
A.  The Imaging Section can create microfilm from paper and digital images. Digital images can also be created from microfilm. Projects are evaluated on a case by case basis.

Q.  Are there fees for these services?
A.  No, there are no charges for these services. They are provided free of charge to encourage proper preservation of long-term records.

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