The main activity of the Archives is protection of archive materials with the authors while created, sorting, processing, lending for use, and publishing of archive materials. The Archives perform this function for the territories of all the 17 municipalities of the City of Belgrade. Preliminary protection is carried out in the field, in registry offices, where the archives are created, through supervision and professional assistance with filing and maintenance, selection and registering of the whole documentation of an entity. The archives performs its primary function - the preservation of the cultural resources - through different aspects of protection of archivals. Beginning with the preliminary protection of a cultural resource in its coming into being stage, through preventive measures, all the way to operational techniques of conservation and restoration.
Its business premises cover an area of about 4,890 m2 but, out of that, storage – depots occupy 2,400 m2. The Archives keep in the depots the holdings of 13 km of archive materials. The materials cover the period from the middle of the 18th to the end of the 20th century: bodies of the authorities, administration, judiciary, economy, educational, health care, and cultural institutions, societies, associations, personal and family holdings and collections.
Every year, more than 17,000 archival units (documents, artifacts, boxes, books) are checked out of the depot for the needs of the archivists who are arranging and describing them, who are preparing exhibitions and publications, or for the needs of the researchers who are to use them in the reading room and for the needs of the citizens in the registry office of the Archives.
The archivals are classified and arranged in accordance with the standing archival principles.
Annually, the Archives visits about 8,000 of those interested in the scientific research of archive materials and issuing of public documents needed for regulation of legal and for private legal requirements or visit to the Gallery. The most sought out documents are the architectural plans of the buildings erected on the territory of Belgrade. Archivals open to the public examination are made available to a researcher without a charge for purpose of historical research.
The Historical Archives of Belgrade employ a staff of 47 workers, out of which 2/3 are on professional, and the rest are on the administrative and technical assignments.