Kahn Consulting’s approach to development of records retention schedules is innovative, unique and sustainable. This Kahn Consulting approach provides clients with the best of both worlds: a comprehensive records inventory mapped to “big bucket” retention rules. The big bucket approach to retention was pioneered by Kahn Consulting consultants in the mid-1980s. Since that time big buckets have become the cutting edge approach to retention.

The Kahn Consulting retention methodology starts with a comprehensive inventory of the organization’s information assets. This inventory is a fundamental building block for all records management programs and the data collected provides a company with invaluable information about each of their record categories for various information initiatives across the enterprise. This includes privacy classifications, security classifications, media/formats, locations, system/application identification, locations of records maintained by third parties, records duplication and administrative retention needs. This inventory information is memorialized in RulesMapper™, a unique and faster-better-cheaper approach to collecting, managing and maintaining the records inventory data. Using RulesMapper's™ library of industry-specific baseline records as a starting point, clients are able to identify and inventory all of their record categories in a matter of weeks. RulesMapper's™ workflow provides a sustainable approach for maintaining the inventory.

A business profile questionnaire, specific to the client’s operations and the data contained in the inventory provide the framework for the scope of the legal research. This information is critical to the development of the retention rules that become part of the records retention schedule in RulesMapper™. The records retention schedule review, maintenance and approval workflows in RulesMapper™ provide a legally-defensible audit trail.

The Kahn Consulting approach to records retention schedule using RulesMapper™ delivers:

  • Comprehensive and sustainable records inventory with data for each record category including:
    • Records custodian
    • Privacy / security classifications
    • Record media / formats and their locations
    • System / application references
    • Third party custodian identification
    • Administrative retention periods
    • Duplicate records identification
  • Enterprise retention rules:
    • Based on comprehensive legal research
    • Mapped to each inventory item
    • Rules that can be easily applied to electronic information
    • Approved with comprehensive audit trails of all approvals and modifications
  • RulesMapper™ provides:
    • Easily maintainable structure for the organization-wide inventory and retention rules
    • Access for all employees for records management compliance initiatives
    • Organization-wide knowledge-base of the company’s information assets


A major insurance client that struggled with an internal approach to retention for 30 years said:
“for the first time we have a sustainable and understandable approach to retention that works for all record formats. Since working with Kahn Consulting consultants and RulesMapper to build our program framework we have had many successes. In three short years we have been able to build out a world class program.”

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