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Email Archiving: A Buyer's Checklist

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Synopsis

Email is the backbone of today’s corporate business processes. It lives as the primary communication vehicle internally between employees and externally with customers, vendors, partners and investors. It is arguably today’s most pervasive and critical business application within which is stored the most valuable business content.

To protect this vital information while working to eliminate risk, lower management costs and improve business insight, companies require a comprehensive email archiving solution. This solution should not only work to effectively retain email information in a searchable repository, the best email archiving solutions also provide a smarter approach to collecting, retaining and accessing data so that it can deliver true business value.

UNDERSTANDING YOUR NEEDS

Every enterprise environment has different needs when it comes to the demands they place on an email archive solution. Some may be more focused on the management of compliance and risk, while others have greater demands for improving capacity management and managing growth. Here are seven key requirements your environment may have when it comes to email archiving. When selecting the best solution, prioritize these requirements so that you can ensure that your email archive is aligned with your business needs:

ONE. Lower Storage and Hardware Costs. If your Exchange data is multiplying quickly, requiring more and more investment in storage resources and hardware, you need to select an email archive that offers robust capacity management features. Consider a solution that delivers content-based retention policies so that it will have the intelligence to keep only content with business value. This can reduce your retention costs by up to 70 percent.

TWO: Eliminate PSTs. PST (Personal Storage Table) files are troublesome personal email content folders where Microsoft Outlook automatically stores email data on personal systems. They are problematic because they can become easily corrupted and, when no endpoint data protection solution
is in place, they are often left out of the corporate data protection process. As such they can contain “dark data” and information that is at great risk to data loss. An advanced email archive solution will eliminate PST files, integrating them seamlessly into a common archive repository for secure access and easy search and discovery for improved productivity and risk prevention.

THREE: Improve Employee Productivity. With increasing workforce mobility, employees are demanding better and quicker access to their business data. Using an email archive that offers self-service access to data, employees can easily search and access the information they need without calling the help desk or searching for content for hours themselves across multiple devices.

FOUR: Automate Records Retention. Automatically managing the complete lifecycle of your data can be a significant requirement for email archiving. To best support this need, select a solution that uses automated policies to classify, organize, retain and delete information based on requirements set for your organization.

FIVE: Meet Regulatory Requirements. Every organization faces compliance requirements. To know that you are compliance-ready, regardless of the regulatory demands of your industry, select an email archive that supports the enterprise-wide search and efficient discovery of all Electronically Stored Information (ESI). This will ensure that you are prepared in the event of any compliance audit your organization may face.

SIX: Respond to eDiscovery or Legal Hold Demands. Without an advanced email archive, eDiscovery processes can be exceptionally costly and tediously lengthy. Even worse, they can still miss critical information that could be the critical evidence needed to be victorious. The best email archiving solutions will work to empower your legal and compliance teams with self-service search functionality to speed discovery processes. They will also provide sophisticated legal hold and review capabilities for devices, laptops, emails and files by case for effective workflow and decision making.

SEVEN: Eliminate “Dark Data”. Data that isn’t being efficiently utilized to improve the value of your business is “dark data.” This data may include information that holds significant value that will improve your business’ operation. It may also be unknown data that holds great risk or exposure potential that can greatly harm your business. Either way, having “dark data” is costly to the business. An advanced email archive can help to eliminate “dark data” by reducing the volume of content managed and giving you greater insight into the email you are managing through effective search and discovery functionality.