To conform with State and Federal records retention rules as referred to in guidelines issued by the Financial Managers Society (FMS), Accounting managers are tasked with keeping procurement and expense records for set periods of time, after which they can be destroyed.

In many cases, conclusive records don't exist. For example,
orders placed over the Internet using vendor shopping cart programs generally do not qualify as Purchase Orders....unless they are issued by a buyer, documented as such, and can meet audit and records retention standards.

"A Purchase Order (PO) is a commercial document issued by a buyer, to a seller, indicating types, quantities, and prices for products or services the seller will provide to the buyer. Sending a PO to a supplier constitutes a legal offer to buy products or services. Acceptance of a PO by a seller usually forms a one-off contract between the buyer and seller, so no contract exists until the PO is accepted."  [Wikipedia]

To accommodate basic state and federal records retention requirements, it archives the following information:
  • Product requisitions, 1 year;

  • Purchase Orders, 7 years;

  • Proof / receipt of delivery, 1 year;

  • Paid bills and invoices, 7 years (from payment);

  • Stockroom withdrawal requests, 1 year;

  • Inventory status reports, 7 years;

  • Scrap / salvage records (supplies - forms), 7 years;

  • Leases, and contracts, 7 years;

  • Accounts Payable supporting data, 7 years.

Transaction records can be accessed online for up to 7 years, after which they may be available upon request from the system's administrator.


     Records Retention compliance
     is the cornerstone for effective
     audit management. It is the
     implemented policy that defines
     an organization's financial
     compliance with state and
     Federal regulations.