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4 min read

Writen by Marin Milenkoski

Posted on: January 4, 2024

Understanding GDPR in Employment Records Management

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has recently released important guidance on a topic that tends to be overlooked: managing employment records and ensuring data protection compliance. This guidance outlines what employers must, should, and could do in this regard. It’s common for many companies to underestimate the significance of properly managing employment records, but it’s a crucial aspect. Maintaining effective employment record management not only fosters transparency, but also helps organizations comply with data protection laws, particularly the GDPR. 


Employers must actively balance their need to maintain employment records with the imperative to uphold workers’ rights to privacy. The UK GDPR applies to the processing of workers’ personal information, ensuring that data collection is fair, lawful, and transparent. 

keylock, protecting data
Image by onlyyouqj on Freepik

About the collection and keeping Employment Records, employers must collect only necessary personal information, ensuring it’s used in line with data protection principles. Lawful bases for processing such data include contractual needs, legal obligations, and legitimate interests. Special category data, like health or ethnic origin, requires additional conditions for processing. 

Employers must have a lawful basis for sharing workers’ personal information. This includes considerations for emergency situations, references, publishing worker information, and handling outsourced employment functions. Also, employers need to comply with legal obligations when using pension and insurance schemes and in situations like mergers and acquisitions.

The ICO provides detailed checklists to help employers ensure compliance. These include guidelines for collecting and keeping records, managing outsourced functions, conducting equality monitoring, handling pension and insurance schemes, and dealing with mergers and acquisitions.

This guidance is crucial for employers to understand their responsibilities under GDPR in managing employment records. Above all, it emphasizes the importance of lawful and transparent handling of workers’ personal information, as well as balancing organizational needs with individual privacy rights.

If you are not sure if you should register with the ICO, find more information on our blog – https://gdprlocal.com/do-i-need-to-register-with-the-ico/

We hope you found our summary of the ICO’s guidance on managing employment records under GDPR insightful.

Reach out to us for more detailed discussions or professional advice on GDPR compliance and employment record management. We’re here to assist you in navigating these complex regulations and ensuring your business stays compliant.

Your thoughts and inquiries are important to us. For this reason, we aim to respond to all messages within 24 hours during business days. Contact us at [email protected].

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