As information continues to grow in your business, things can easily spiral out of control. You will need to be able to share relevant information on request, sometimes quickly – such as an urgent request for information from your Legal department.
It all adds up to a complex business environment that’s redefining discovery in litigation and investigations. With the threat of more costs and new risks, Information Governance is moving up the agenda when it comes to eDiscovery.
Below are our ‘Magnificent Seven’ tips for eDiscovery and Information Retention.
Governance is your problem, not someone else’s.
Don’t see Information Governance as a legal problem, an IT problem or a compliance problem. It’s a problem you all need to address. If you want it to work, you need to create a single team with a coherent strategy to govern and manage your information.
Govern your information before it governs you.
An Information Governance strategy will reduce the risk, cost and volume of data at source in future eDiscovery exercises. If you get this right you will be in control of your data. if not, it will be very expensive. Remember that currently for every 1044 documents identified, retrieved, shared and analysed in discovery, only one is ever produced.
Have a defensible disposition strategy.
Don’t keep data indefinitely because storage seems cheap. When you get a dispute or a regulatory review that storage will suddenly seem very expensive. All the information – mostly useless or unnecessary – has to be collected by service providers and reviewed by lawyers. Ask yourself if you know that content provided contains all of information you have?
Prepare or fail.
Think about your requirements at the very start of eDiscovery, not later. If you prioritise planning, identification, collection and processing of information in a cohesive way you will reduce volume (and cost) at every step.
Use your brain.
Technology tools aren’t everything. You need people, process and then technology. Focus on the problem, not the technology.
Expect judicial involvement.
It’s not just customers, lawyers and service providers today. Judges have a more prominent role in early discovery – especially when setting estimates and budgets. Changes like the Jackson Reforms mean that organisations, their law firms and service providers can expect much more judicial scrutiny.
Tomorrow’s already here.
It’s no longer just about email. There are so many more communication channels that people use today. You need to be able to view the information created and stored in all of them. Only by taking the holistic approach to information management dictated by Information Governance can you ensure the visibility of all information from a single, centralised and consolidated platform.