What can a 1,350 global enterprise survey tell us about the evolving composition and location of ESI? Although Araka’s fifth annual survey is focused on WAN and security infrastructure, it contains nuggets with eDiscovery impact. Over 80% of respondents expect more than 25% of workers to remain remote, confirming that the hybrid work environment is here to stay. 46% of respondents have deployed over 500 distinct applications within their environment. That puts huge pressure on legal departments and providers to accommodate more than email and Office files.
My favorite metric/graphic is the top SaaS applications and their corresponding growth since 2020. As expected, M365 dominates and Google Docs lost ground. Without the source data, it is impossible to tell whether the 10% decline in Google Docs usage is a real market loss or just G-Suite adoption. The real growth winners are Zoom, Teams and Slack. This tells me that the pandemic has rapidly accelerated the ongoing transformation from business email to collaboration hub-chat. I am still not seeing discovery requests or plaintiff counsel consistently demanding these new multiparty informal communication channels. I believe that they will catch up as regulators and law enforcement increasingly target these and mobile device content as key sources of frank discussion. My corporate clients are scrambling to adapt policy, technology and workflows to get ahead of these demands.
I am also seeing increasing end user frustration with information overload that is impacting their productivity. We need better tools, period. Sitting in on key player interviews and watching execs having to run searches in 3-5 different systems to locate the a critical conversation or report is a technology failure. We live in a world of accelerated change and are drowning in a data firehose. It makes me want to hang up my consultant’s hat and go back to product design to find some kind of solution. eDiscovery is supposed to be all about relevance. So why cannot we bring relevance back to our Inbox?
Greg Buckles wants your feedback, questions or project inquiries at Greg@eDJGroupInc.com. Contact him directly for a free 15 minute ‘Good Karma’ call. He solves problems and creates eDiscovery solutions for enterprise and law firm clients.
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