To prepare permanent records for transfer to State Records' custody you need to:

Agencies should wait until a transfer proposal is approved before undertaking this work, or they may need to store the records onsite or with an Approved Storage Provider (ASP) for a longer period.

Locate and Sort the records

Before boxing and listing the records you should ensure:

  • the records are permanent in a Records Disposal Schedule (RDS) or General Disposal Schedule (GDS) and you know the reference number for each item, and write this on the file cover (of physical records)

  • the records are inactive and unlikely to be accessed once transferred (active records should be sent to an Approved Storage Provider (ASP))

  • you know how long the records are to be restricted (records restricted for long periods or indefinitely may not be approved for transfer)

  • the last date of the records or the date the files were closed is at least 15 years ago (records less than 15 years old may not be approved for transfer)

  • the records are sorted into their number or date sequence

  • you locate any permanent records missing from the sequence

  • filing is complete (you cannot add to files once they are transferred)

  • files have a clear title

  • obvious duplicate copies are removed

  • contents of lever arch files or binders are placed in file covers

  • documents are secured to the file, and bulldog and paper clips, and rubber bands are removed.

If the records show signs of mould, insect, water or other damage, or include USBs, CDs or other media contact the Archive Team for advice. 

Box the records

Boxing and listing should be done at the same time to ensure the list of items added to the box matches what has been placed into the box.

Standard box types must be used.

Files should be added to boxes in number order, all facing the same way.

Ensure boxes are filled, with enough space to fit your hand down inside the box.

Label the boxes as you go. Write your own code in pencil on the label to identify each separate series until the transfer is approved and you receive a series (GRS) and consignment number from State Records.    

For advice about preparing records that do not fit in standard boxes and records in other formats including volumes, bundles, maps, plans, index cards, photographs and negatives, microforms, contact the Archive Team.

If records are transferred and do not meet the physical requirements of State Records, they may be returned to your agency for correction at your cost, or your agency may be invoiced, as per State Records’ regulated fees and charges, for the time taken by an Archivist to re-process the records.

Accepted box types

State Records will only accept boxes with the State Records label printed on them. We do not accept transfers of records in other boxes.

The following standard box types have been designed to fit on State Records’ shelving to maximise the use of space and enable safe retrieval and handling:

Suitable for files and small volumes

  • Type 1: depth 390 mm x width 170 mm x height 260 mm
  • Type 2: depth 390 mm x width 85 mm x height 260 mm

Suitable for index cards

  • Type 3: depth 390 mm x width 165 mm x height 120 mm (small cards)
  • Type 5: depth 390 mm x width 220 mm x height 145 mm (large cards)

Suitable for medium sized volumes and dot matrix computer printouts

  • Type 10: depth 390 mm x width 440 mm x height 120 mm.

Box suppliers

Type 1 boxes are available from:

Cavan Corrugated Products CCP (part of VISY)

2/9 Sharp Court

Mawson Lakes SA 5095

Tel: 1300 130 925

Tel (Joe): 0407 398 674


Cavan Corrugated Products offer all box types. Other suppliers on-sell the product and may not offer all sizes.

Iron Mountain

Tel: 1300 476 668

Quote product code S8020 Type 1.

Make sure to add Type 1 to the end of the product code.  Iron Mountain have a similar product with a similar product code (S8020) that State Records does not accept.

The Information Management Group (TIMG)

Contact: Maurice Hewson

Tel: 1300 476 668


Product code: Type 1

To order different size box types contact the individual supplier directly.

Label the boxes

Boxes should be labelled in pencil until transfer has been approved and a date for the transfer has been agreed.

Once the transfer is approved, boxes must be labelled clearly and legibly in black permanent marker.

State Records will not accept boxes with crossings out, liquid paper or sticky labels on them.

If changes to the labelling are required and you have already labelled the boxes in permanent marker, turn the boxes inside out and re-label them, or use new boxes.

The State Records box label has four sections.


Section 1: Series and consignment number, e.g. GRS 5000/1/P

Section 2: The date range of the records (in years), e.g. 1986 - 1988, or 1992

Section 3: First file or volume number (if no numbers leave blank)

Section 4: Last file or volume number (if no numbers leave blank)



The unit (box) number should be written in the bottom right hand corner.



Example of a box labelled for an annual single number file series with an alpha prefix:

Example of a box labelled for a three-tiered numerical file series:


Example of a box labelled for an alphabetical series: