Post # 1
I am really good about keeping all of my work emails organized and archived into folders, however I tend to hold onto things, and have some emails dating back to 2008. They don’t seem relevant anymore but am wondering if some need to be kept for any future audit/HR requests. Does that actually ever happen?
How long do you keep your work emails for?
Post # 3
We never get rid of ours, but we do archive them. They go back to 2008 when the company opened.
I make sure everyone deletes their spam, and then deletes their deleted items (you’d be amazed how many people don’t) but so many people do get rid of emails and realise 4 years later that they need them (this literally just happened in my office this week).
Post # 4
I never delete them… and they are auto-archived as well!
Post # 5
@Pink Asawa: My company automatically archives emails – I’d imagine most companies do. Even if you “delete” it, it is never really gone. If you personally don’t need them anymore, I wouldn’t worry about keeping them.
Post # 6
I delete ones that aren’t relevant to anything, but for any big business decisions or for wording I like (i.e. so I can use it again), I keep it – usually filing it. I have emails back from 2008.
Often though I let all my emails clutter up. Every now and then I go through and get rid of ones I know I’ll never need.
We’re encouraged to get rid of some emails as part of good records management practices, but I don’t think many people do. Lots of cover your ass type stuff goes on, which I am fine with personally.
Post # 7
Ours get archived, but I keep important ones in my inbox for at least 3 months.
Post # 8
Forever; I started here on 2009 and still have emails from then. I am super organized and have a folder for just about every vendor/co worker/ everything.
Post # 9
I delete most of mine pretty frequently. I think the oldest ones I have are ~3 months old. Relevant emails I keep in folders. We actually get emails from IT about deleting emails because most of the people I work with don’t know how to use computers and keep emails for 5+ years (or longer!) and it bogs down the server.
Post # 10
@Pink Asawa: I never delete any emails. I’ve had to dig up 4+ year old emails before to cover my ass!
Post # 11
I try and delete personal emails right away or ones that are easy inquiries ” hey can you check if this was paid ” that you can easily check online for confirmation, or if i see that 4 or 5 other people were copied on it and it isn’t directed at me personally.
What about manager bees – ever have to go through the emails of a past employee that reported to them when looking for something?
Post # 12
I keep them all. I have the folder space, so why not? I’ve gone back a few times to find old emails.
Post # 13
I never deleted unless they are not directed to me, ie cc’d, or are something simple like our receptionist telling us what the cake of the month is. We have auto-archive so I don’t even bother with it. Also, my boss is extremely needy so I would be in a world of hurt if I couldn’t find “that e-mail I sent to you 3-4 years ago about that thing in the case”…. Literally, this is what he gives me sometimes!
Post # 14
Keep the majority especially as it pertains to special projects that I’m working on. Like a PP said, unless its some CC that isn’t essential or one off inquries. Besides, that’s what archieving is for.
Post # 15
I’m only allowed to keep 100 MB worth of email in my inbox (i.e., on the server), and it’s amazing how fast that gets used up. I’m constantly “filing” emails into my large personal folder that’s stored on my computer. The whole email account gets backed up to an external hard drive weekly. Emails in my sent and trash folders count toward the 100 MB, so I also go through those as needed and either file them or delete them permanently. I very, very rarely find myself needing an email that doesn’t exist anymore. I have so much space on my computer and my large personal folder is so well-organized that I can file things even if I’m 99% sure I’ll never need them again. I’ve got things going back to the end of 2009, which is just before I moved to this new position within the same company I’ve been working for since mid-2008.
ETA – I should mention that I work for a state agency, so it’s important to keep things in case they come up in an open records request. You never know!
Post # 16
I don’t delete anything. Mine autoarchive to the computer, I have everything.