Iron Mountain Smart Sort

Solution Guides

As you accelerate digital transformation, you want to reduce cost and risk by destroying paper records that are no longer needed. Unfortunately, this is often not as simple as it sounds.

25 April 20246 mins
Iron Mountain employee pulling boxes

Achieve your information governance and business objectives with Smart Sort

Do you...

  • have a large volume of inherited records?
  • have trouble finding records when you need them?
  • want to relocate inventory but first need to destroy what you no longer need?
  • want to destroy records but can’t confidently isolate which ones are eligible without a substantial investment?
  • want to go paper free but find it difficult to make decisions about which records to digitize?
  • need to isolate records for a merger, acquisition or divestiture?

If you answered yes to and of the above questions, ask us about Iron Mountain Smart Sort.

Your challenge

You need to sort and reorganize your records inventory to make defensible decisions on disposition. Unfortunately, this is not as simple as it sounds.

What makes destroying records so complicated?

  • Lack of inventory integrity/visibility: When key metadata is not captured and listed throughout the information lifecycle, it is difficult to search, manage and make decisions on what records to retain, digitize, or destroy.
  • Commingled record types and event date complexity: Different record types have different requirements. If records are not organized according to record classification or event date, you can’t confidently and defensibly take action.
  • Reorganizing records is labor intense and expensive: You lack the resources to sort each file by destruction eligibility date, record type, a unique identifier, or other requirement.

What this means?

  • Unnecessary cost: Large volumes of records without file-level metadata are stored without regard to destruction eligibility dates or record classification will impact your ability to effectively manage your program.
  • Increased risk Holding onto records longer than necessary increases the risk of information loss and regulatory violations. It also adds complexity to legal discovery, audit response and compliance management processes.
  • Lost productivity: Finding what you need and making quick decisions on records disposition requires a well organize inventory. Without an efficient process to sort and reorganize files, you could lose time and delay your critical objectives.

Smart sort enables you to make defensible decisions by sorting and reorganizing records by

events calendar

Destruction date

Sort and reorganise your records according to destruction eligibility year so that you can confidently destroy paper documents as they meet retention dates.
media backup


Initiatives, such as divestiture, require the need to isolate records in a short period of time. We will sort and reorganise your records according to record type, record status, unique identifier - or whatever you require.
laptop with files


If you do not require sorting and reorganizing of your inventory, leverage Smart Sort to apply metadata to records at the file level so that you can avoid the high cost of manual file-level listing.

Our team can support you from Iron Mountain record centers or at your location. If you have records in-house or at an offsite storage facility, we can support your needs.

Achieve your information governance business objectives

  • Make quick and confident decisions
    Iron mountain leverages data from your existing database and retention schedule to automate defensible decision-making.
  • Simplify future decision-making
    Stored records will be sorted according to destruction eligibility year, record type, a unique identifier—or whatever you require.
  • Reduce programme costs and risks
    Initiate immediate destruction of eligible records to reduce storage costs and mitigate legal discovery, audit, and compliance risks.
  • Improve find rates
    At the completion of your Smart Sort project, you will have an up-to-date listing that enables accurate and efficient records

Smart Sort example engagement


A large healthcare organisation wanted to reduce cost and risk by destroying records that had met retention requirements. However, they were not able to easily and defensibly identify which records were eligible for destruction, as they lacked the budget required to undertake a long-term and labour-intensive discovery project. Constrained by limited resources, the organisation’s push for defensible destruction was at a standstill.



Following the Smart Sort process, Iron Mountain’s team retrieved 48,000 cartons of records and reviewed the contents at the file level. In real-time and with one touch of the file, they sorted and reboxed all files by future destruction date and in accordance with the retention schedule while identifying those records that were eligible for destruction.


  • Gained the ability to confidently destroy 1.4M files
  • Reduced storage costs while meeting compliance requirements and reducing risk
  • Established a process for ongoing destruction

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