Like the rest of the business world, legal technology continues to evolve to meet complex challenges. eDiscovery trends reflect the need to process huge amounts of data in widely varied formats, both on-premises and in the cloud. A combination of forward-looking technologies and solid information governance helps organizations meet these challenges head-on.
1. Increasingly Complex eDiscovery Architectures
The rapid shift to remote and hybrid work drastically changed the way we collaborate and create data. For instance, in a period of months, collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams and Zoom recorded growth rates of as much as 3000 percent. Now, in addition to email, colleagues conduct work over a variety of messaging apps, video conferencing and other cloud services.
At the same time, workers use numerous devices every day to conduct business, from company laptops to personal smartphones. And they use multiple applications, such as Microsoft SharePoint or Dropbox, to store and share data.
These various collaboration tools deliver massive amounts of discoverable data in a wide variety of unique formats. And this creates a need for improved technology solutions. For example, video files eat up storage space and can prove difficult and time-consuming to search. And BYOD policies complicate the process of discovery critical data across devices and platforms.
2. AI Streamlines the eDiscovery Process
Fortunately, technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) can help legal teams quickly find and process relevant data. Using AI, they can analyze the body of data to develop a picture of what data exists, where it lives and how much of it may prove relevant to the case at hand.
For instance, AI can suggest related documents that more manual processes might miss. Additionally, AI-powered analytics can deliver deep insights that prioritize information and inform case strategy.
3. Automated Technology Improves Workflows and Early Case Assessment
Automating many of the routine and time-consuming tasks associated with eDiscovery frees up legal teams to focus on delivering legal advice. At the same time, automation reduces the chance for human error and leaves an audit trail. For instance, introducing automation to legal holds simplifies the process while making it scalable, secure, and legally defensible.
Automation also improves early case assessment (ECA) by helping the team quickly identify and prioritize relevant data, streamline the review process and support more accurate cost predictions. By accelerating ECA in the eDiscovery process, organizations reduce time and cost associated with gathering, preserving, and reviewing data.
Automation can improve many of the processes associated with eDiscovery. For example, organizations may find that legal holds and data collection provide a good place to start. But they should take time to develop separate workflow templates for common scenarios to avoid re-inventing the wheel with each new case.
4. Information Governance Proves Essential
While technology solutions such as automation and AI streamline eDiscovery, those solutions prove most effective when combined with information governance. In fact, information governance provides a critical foundation for eDiscovery.
In a nutshell, information governance involves knowing where the organization’s data lives and who owns it. This includes categorizing and mapping data throughout the organization, determining access controls and information lifecycles and ensuring data security. Technology powers all these processes.
With data properly classified and mapped, a process enhanced by automation, teams can use in-place searches to quickly find and analyze relevant data before gathering it. In addition, good retention/destruction policies help ensure clean data and reduce redundancies, making eDiscovery easier.
5. Cloud-Based Technology Drives Efficiency and Lowers Cost
Most organizations, including law firms, store some or all their workloads and data in the cloud. Consequently, relying on legacy, on-premises eDiscovery solutions will no longer prove a viable option moving forward. Cloud-based technologies make it easier to find and collect relevant data while reducing discovery overhead and improving speed and efficiency. They can include legacy on-premises data as well as data from multiple cloud solution vendors.
Proactively Address eDiscovery Trends with Legal Technology
By leveraging current and emerging legal technology, organizations can overcome eDiscovery trends and challenges such as multiple data formats and the need to locate and process massive amount of data quickly. Cloud-based information governance and eDiscovery solutions from eGovernance.com help companies gain control of their data and reduce eDiscovery pain.
eGovernance solutions work across multiple platforms, centralizing eDiscovery while allowing you to keep your data in place. Additionally, teams can extract copies as needed to meet retention requirements. Streamlining eDiscovery with eGovernance.com solutions reduces the time and cost involved while improving security and ensuring a legally defensible process.
eGovernance eDiscovery Solutions
Providing a set of sophisticated and simple to use tools to search, refine and extract data in support of FOIA requests, litigation or internal audits; eGovernance provides organizations with rapid and efficient data discoveries to meet ever growing regulatory and financial deadlines.