An electronic discovery crisis is on its way. It’s inevitable. If you choose to ignore this reality, if you wait until a monumental discovery request hits, you’ll have to work frantically with business stakeholders, records information management, and IT to identify custodians, manually search for potentially relevant information, and preserve and produce the relevant information by the court’s production deadline — hoping you didn’t overlook a custodian or a repository. It’s a costly, time-consuming, and error-prone process, and given the tsunami of data flooding every corner of every organization today, it makes finding a needle in a haystack look easy.

There’s a much better way. You can start working today with IT and the other stakeholders to develop a robust information-governance strategy. The goals of IG are to: (1) routinely identify information that has legal, compliance, or business value; and (2) communicate this understanding to IT so it can dispose of information that has no such value. This “defensible disposal” of data makes it easier and less costly to respond quickly and accurately to discovery requests and has a number of other advantages, including reducing IT costs.

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