Keeping a record

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Key points

  • a record is evidence of something that you have experienced, witnessed or received
  • it is important to keep records of workplace problems
  • there are different types of records, including notes, emails or documents.

What is a record?

A record is evidence of something that you have experienced, witnessed or received.

A record may include:

  • emails or letters
  • electronic files
  • photographs
  • videos
  • forms or documents

Why should I keep a record of work-related situations?

Sometimes, when you are self-advocating, you might need to have evidence of the problem.

Keeping a record of what has happened can help you to remember details and facts.

It can also help if you need to educate others about a particular topic or problem you are having.

What records should I keep?

You should keep a record of any evidence or information you may have related to a workplace situation.

This may include:

  • evidence of the actual problem
  • evidence related to you reporting the problem.

Helpful things to keep a record of, may include:

  • reports or complaints that you make
  • conversations that you have
  • incidences that you have witnessed or experienced
  • meetings or interviews that you attend
  • letters or emails that you send or receive
  • notes from meetings or interviews.

How do I keep a record?

The method that you use to keep a record of something that has happened depends on the situation and your accessibility needs and preferences.

Some people may prefer to store everything on their phone. Other people may need to write the information and details in a notebook.

Ways to keep a record, might include:

  • typing on a document on your computer
  • writing in a notebook
  • recording a voice memo on your phone
  • using a note taking app on your phone
  • storing files on your phone or computer.

When keeping a record, it is important to ensure that:

  • the information is easy to access again
  • the information is accurate
  • your record keeping method is easy for you.

Consent and recording audio and video material

If you are wanting to record someone or an activity in the workplace, it is important that you familiarise yourself with the law.

In Australia, each state has their own laws related to the recording and sharing of activities and conversations.

Click on your state below for further information:

Case Study

Oliver has been experiencing workplace harassment. Despite directly asking his co-workers to stop, they have continued to send him inappropriate emails and text messages.

He approaches his boss and reports the harassment. In order to file an official complaint, his boss requires evidence of the harassment. Luckily Oliver has kept all the emails and text messages and is able to forward them to his company’s human resources (HR) department. 

Real Life Story

Story description

My boss had denied my requests for workplace adjustments twice in the past three months, so I requested a meeting with my company’s human resources (HR) representative. My boss was required to attend. 


During the meeting my boss claimed that the reason my requests were denied, were because I had not completed the appropriate paperwork. This was a lie. But thankfully I was able to show proof of my written application for workplace adjustments, as well as evidence of when I submitted my paperwork.