Migrated from eDJGroupInc.com. Author: Barry Murphy. Published: 2010-04-21 09:00:17  Here we sit at the eDiscovery Pavilion inside of the AIIM Expo.  Slowly, but surely, attendees are poking their heads into this area.  It sort of mirrors the real world – information management and IT professionals realize the need to take control of information and the risk it presents, most notably eDiscovery costs.  For too long, organizations have turned a blind eye to eDiscovery, but there is now a sense of urgency.This crowd represents the challenges associated with eDiscovery well.  AIIM attendees are typically not lawyers, but do have knowledge of topics like eDiscovery and compliance.  Often, the AIIM crowd acts as the intermediary between IT and legal; much of the AIIM crowd would actually report formally belonging to the IT department.   As they slowly creep into the eDiscovery pavilion, these folks do so with some trepidation.In most cases, organizations are going ahead with information management initiatives (SharePoint is a big deal at this show), but doing so without a ton of input from legal.  For example, I’ve asked a few folks if they are aware of the potential collection problems that SharePoint may cause and gotten a “yes” answer with a shrug of the shoulders as if to say, “we’re going forward regardless.”  Or, ask attendees here if they have solid retention policies and tools to enforce those policies and the answer is flat-out “no.”It’s clear that the gap between IT, legal, and business departments is still large.  Organizations need to make a more concerted effort to get these groups on the same page and to make the hard decisions (e.g. how long to keep email) necessary.  No longer can legal try to force 30 day email retention policies when we know that users will figure out a way to keep what they think they will need.  The AIIM crowd understands that and is trying hard to surface issues like this.Retention policies are not the only thing that organizations have a hard time determining.  I also heard that IT folks can’t get legal to truly define what information is privileged versus not and who has access to information across both state and country lines.  This reflects the relative immaturity of the eDiscovery industry.  Sometimes, there is just not enough precedent or enough prescriptive law to give organizations a good idea of how to act.  In addition, the laws are different in each state and even more so across country borders.  One of the rulings along those lines that the crowd here is very interested in hearing is how the Supreme Court rules in the case of personal privacy as it relates to work communications.If it sounds like I am bemoaning the immaturity of the eDiscovery market and the hesitancy of the AIIM community to dive in headlong, you would only be half right.  Yes, I’m chomping at the bit for these challenges to be addressed.  But, this show is indicative of moves in the right direction.  Even if organizations rely on SharePoint too much, at least they are getting proactive about information management.  And, that will lead to more innovation in the eDiscovery solutions market around how to capture and collect SharePoint information.  True, some organizations will get burned along the way, but at least it will be in the name of progress.

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