CTS – Your Technology Partner

SharePoint Information Management Policies

Written by Kenny Gordon on June 16, 2014

Manage your content with out of the box features.

Most users and some IT professionals are not aware of the Information Management Policy (IMP) features that are included as a standard SharePoint feature. IMPs allow us to configure various aspects of the content stored in our farm…such as (maybe Retention, Auditing, etc.) An administrator can configure these for each content type associated with a list or library.

Example – Purge Old Content

Suppose the Human Resources department in your organization leverages SharePoint to store out of office requests. Business rules state that IT must store these requests for a year after submission; after that, they no longer represent any value to the business. You can configure a retention policy for the Time-Off Request content type that will automatically soft delete a request two years after the employee created it. The result is a SharePoint list that contains only fresh, relevant content.

I admit the example above is simplistic, but I hope it caught your attention. SharePoint will accommodate added complexity by using multiple stages in a retention policy. Additional actions are available to allow administrators more flexibility when it comes to aged content (permanent deletion; transfer to another location; start a workflow; declare a record, etc.)


Specify stages of your content and actions that occur at the completion of each stage. This feature helps maintain fresh content and control sensitive content. Retention stages are extremely flexible when you take advantage of the “Start a workflow” action.



Trigger SharePoint to create records in the audit log reports for actions that users perform on specified content. While this is not the most intuitive part of SharePoint, an administrator can use this feature in an investigative manner. This feature is particularly useful for managing sensitive content.




Assign barcodes to your documents or list items. Insert the barcodes into the document’s body and require users to include a barcode in user created documents.





Include document labels that display important information. Configure the label to display project names, document sensitivity, document owner, or any other document property that you can imagine. This feature is useful but it does come with some limitations.