In the new Enterprise Business Systems, MSU’s administrative and academic units will “scan, attach and store business documents electronically rather than retaining papers copies in a file cabinet(Course EBS-N100, Lesson 1).

The University Archives is providing the following guidance to assist university units in the transition from a paper-based system to a new paper-sparse business workflow. We also are offering training at various venues around campus – through Human Resources Development (HRD), Administrative Data Users Council (ADUC), EBS training, IT Services Technology Training and at your offices upon request. Please do not hesitate to contact us with follow-up questions at or 355-2330. We are all making this transition together!

MSU policy

As per MSU policy, all financial processing transactions must be supported by thorough documentation. Please see the following for further explanation of university policy and requirements on supporting documentation of financial processing transactions:

Supporting Documentation in EBS – FAQs
Manual of Business Procedures


University business record = “information created, received, and maintained as evidence and information by an organization or person, in pursuance of legal obligations or in the transaction of business.”
ISO 15489 – The International Records Management Standards

E-Doc = Transactional document created in Enterprise Business Systesm (EBS), such as a financial processing document; Appointment Form; a procurement document; a maintenance document, i.e. the creation of a new account; or a workflow document. E-docs and HR Forms will replace many of the forms listed in MSU’s Manual of Business Forms and HR personnel system transactions and forms.

Supporting Documentation = Invoices, receipts, contracts, letters of offer, fixed term memorandum, etc. that are appropriate and necessary for the legal and regulatory processing of a financial or HR transaction by contract or governmental requirements such as for a grant account, by State of Michigan requirements, by Generally Accepted Accounting Principles, or by MSU policy as outlined in the Manual of Business Procedures or Human Resources Policies and Procedures.


MSU complies with the State of Michigan’s Records Reproduction Act (Act 116 of 1992) and related best practices. Digital images of supporting documentation minimum requirements are:

  • 300 DPI/PPI
  • PDF strongly preferred
  • TIFF acceptable
  • Images must be clear, readable, in good order
  • File size maximum is 5MB

For more information:

All sensitive data must be redacted or obscured from imaged documents.

Once the e-doc receives all approvals and posts to the general ledger, the imaged supporting documentation becomes the official university record and will be maintained within KFS per university records retention schedules.

There is no expectation that units will maintain imaged versions of the supporting documents.

Things to consider

When purchasing a scanner for your department or unit, here are some questions to consider.

  1. Types of material to be scanned
  2. Work load –frequency of use
  3. Automatic document feed
  4. Duplex feed (both sides of document at once)
  5. Speed of scanning – page per minute
  6. Optical resolution – minimum 200 dpi/ppi
  7. Dimensions of scanning bed
  8. Equipment cost or lease
  9. Warranty and service
  10. Physical ‘footprint’ of unit
  11. Connection to your shared network drive
  12. Scanning software package

The most important consideration when purchasing a scanner is what type of material your office be scanning – business cards, receipts, standard letter size documents or larger? Next, how often will your staff be scanning business documents? Will it be more efficient to provide a central service area for scanning or provide individual desktop scanners to select staff members? Does your office need a scanner with an automatic document feed that can quickly scan multi-page documents? How many pages per minute will the scanner accommodate? Remember the claim on the box is under ideal conditions and most likely the maximum speed. What is the warranty or service agreement for the equipment? Is space a premium in your office space or on your desk – how big is the unit? How will it connect to your shared network drive? What type of scanning software package does the scanner come with “out of the box”?

Types of scanners

Desktop or Flatbed scanner:
The most common and inexpensive type of scanner; includes glass window and cover lid, usually accommodates up to standard letter size documents.
Pros: inexpensive
Cons: slow, bulky
Price: $

Document scanners:
Similar to a fax machine or desktop printer, dedicated document scanners automatically feed sheets through as they scan.
Pros: fast
Cons: low resolution black/white
Price: $$

Multifunction printer/scanner/copier:
One machine that can print, scan, copy, fax, and e-mail; and shared in an office environment. Automatic document feeders are optional, ink-jet or laser printer depending upon need. Pricing varies, leasing is common. If leasing, ask the dealer for a “hard drive erase” option to ensure that university records are wiped from the hard drive when the lease expires.
Pros: fast, service center
Cons: expensive
Price: $$-$$$

Other web resources

Please note the following links are are intended as informational only. No one at the University Archives is endorsing these products.

How to Buy a Scanner, M. David Stone, 11.12.2009

How to Buy a Multi-Function Printer (MFP), M. David Stone, 05.13.2010

*Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to read PDF documents.