Former students requesting documentation years later; in the world of education, this is a rule rather than the exception. Think of lists of grades and/or diplomas, which are subject to long retention periods and must still be easily shared with the person concerned years later. Unfortunately, archiving within the education sector does not (yet) receive all the attention it deserves. What is needed to realise efficiency, save space and get a grip on these documents?

Physical vs. digital

Actually, we see two types of situations. Firstly, there are educational institutions that archive lists of grades/diplomas and any other documentation of students in physical form. The documents are stored in file folders, chests of drawers or boxes. Is a document requested? A member of staff will then search for the document concerned, scan it and send it on. There are also schools that already have the diplomas and lists of grades digital. This often makes searching for the right document a little less labour-intensive. However, we see that in this situation the correct metadata (characteristics of the document) is often missing, with the result that things are kept longer than necessary. Also the findability is still not optimal; structure and laws and regulations are missing.

Structured archiving

Whether the reason is to save internal space, to allocate the correct retention periods or to increase retrievability, an efficient digital archive can no longer be absent within a professional educational institution. While many front-end processes in education are mostly digital, this is not always the case for the back-end processes. An efficient digital archive starts with drawing up an archive plan. Here, we look at the various document types that exist within the educational institution, for example: diplomas and mark lists. It is advisable to start small and later (if necessary) to expand the digital archive with new document types. Are there still things to be digitised? That is not a problem either. A retention period is linked to the document types; this can be based on legislation, but also on internal policy. All documents of the same type are archived according to these 'rules'. This makes it possible to implement an active retention policy and not keep anything longer than necessary.


The document types mentioned - diplomas and transcripts - are documents that are often requested by people outside the educational institution. A well-designed digital archive ensures that these documents can be easily (and securely) shared with a former student, for example, via this archive application. Within a few mouse clicks, you can make the requested document available for a certain period of time. All these actions are also logged. This makes archiving not only fast, but also reliable and verifiable.

How does your educational institution deal with (digital) archiving and making documents available to people outside the organisation? We would be happy to discuss this with you. Please contact us, free of obligation.

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