Chances are compliance, legal or even records managers are requiring you to create an archive for regulatory or litigation purposes. Chances are that archive was sold to you by your storage vendor.
Chances are that archive is yet another snapshot of all your data just like your disaster recovery backup tapes as it is much easier to save everything just in case rather than applying policy and saving what is required. Multiple copies of everything in multiple repositories a storage vendors dream and a records manager’s nightmare.
Chances are you’re now wondering why you’re saving the same useless data over and over again.
It’s okay, you’re not alone. Traditional archiving solutions replicate all user data into a secure repository for long-term storage. This strategy quickly became flawed as the data that has been archived has grown to massive levels and become burdensome to manage and access when you need it.
With today’s compliance requirements and storage costs, saving everything in an unmanageable data repository is not a sound or cost-effective strategy. These archives have failed to live up to the promise of delivering a secure and readily available environment for sensitive business files and email.
Efficiency and the ability to locate files within an archive is more important, as are retention periods and long term preservation policies.
To achieve this efficiency, data center managers need to take fundamentally different approach to their archives, turning to value-based archiving, which only archives what is required for legal hold and preservation requests, not all user files and email.
Archiving receptionists, interns, sales and service team’s emails often provides little – if any – value, while R&D, sales and HR often have retention requirements. Which departments have archive value, and which don’t depend on your company type and industry.
Many organizations that have moved to smarter archiving found that less than 10% of user data needs to be retained for long-term business purposes, versus the 100% retention of traditional archiving solutions that merely replicate all data.
Polices can be defined within the data center’s information management platform to automatically identify new content and move it to the repository for long-term storage and legal hold. Retention periods can also be assigned in order to ensure the content is not preserved beyond any legal or regulatory requirements.
Adding retention periods enable IT to reduce or manage the size of an archive and reduce the legal risk of saving what is not required. Maintaining documents passed their required periods could become a liability for the organization.
It’s time to get smart when it comes to archiving and stop treating it as just another copy of all of the data center’s files and emails. Archives need to be organized, accessible, searchable and relevant. Dated and irrelevant data increases storage costs, drives hefty eDiscovery costs and can result in a levy of fines.