Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Kroll Ontrack releases new research detailing critical ediscovery problems

Kroll Ontrack releases new research detailing critical ediscovery problems

5 Daunting Problems

A look at the largest ediscovery issues facing corporations and law firms over the next five years

MINNEAPOLIS – Jan. 29, 2013Kroll Ontrack, the leading provider of ediscovery, information management, and data recovery products and services, today announced a new ediscovery market report entitled “The Five Daunting Problems Facing Ediscovery.” This research, which outlines the most significant ediscovery challenges in the next three to five years, was assembled over the past 12 months as a result of interviews with attorneys, paralegals, litigation support professionals and IT staff with ediscovery responsibilities.

“Not more than 15 years ago legal professionals understood little – if anything – about the discoverability of electronically stored information,” said Michele Lange, director of ediscovery thought leadership and industry relations, Kroll Ontrack. “Today, the problem is not understanding the basics of ediscovery or its importance to the practice of law, but rather the daunting dilemma faced by ediscovery practitioners is how to find solutions to address big data volumes, expanding case loads, increasing discovery costs and shrinking litigation budgets. In the past year, we have been honored to discuss these very issues with ediscovery professionals in focus groups, software user communities, partner program meetings and the Kroll Ontrack Client Advisory Board.”

Problem #5. The ediscovery rules and technology are constantly changing.

Interviews with ediscovery professionals confirmed that ediscovery variables are in a constant state of flux, as places where data can live are increasing in number and complexity. Further, the line between personal and professional is blurring, with companies now enacting “bring your own device” (BYOD) policies and social media platforms becoming commonplace. As a result, information governance has become a demanding endeavor, as noted by analyst firm Gartner, Inc., which reports that, through 2016, “companies will increase spending on information governance strategies and related technologies.” This issue, combined with big data and ever-evolving global rules and regulations across jurisdictions, has made best practices for preserving, collecting, reviewing and producing data difficult to pinpoint.

Problem #4. Ediscovery costs are unpredictable.

The ediscovery pricing landscape is defined by many variables. From per gigabyte or custodian pricing to alternative fee arrangements, pricing models have dramatically changed in the past two decades. However, most professionals still believe that ediscovery is too expensive, and that those costs are adding to the burdens of a stretched-thin legal system. Despite best efforts to compare ediscovery providers in one way or another, true “apples to apples” comparisons of ediscovery providers can seldom be made by law firms or corporations faced with ediscovery obligations. Finally, parties are continually at risk of volatile ediscovery project parameters, as scope creep is commonplace, resulting in ediscovery budget overruns.

Problem #3. Technology-assisted review (TAR) is underutilized.

From the courts to the blogosphere, the development of TAR – also known as predictive coding, intelligent review, machine learning or computer-assisted review – was a prominent ediscovery focus in 2012. Analyst firm International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that big data will be a $24 billion market in 2016, rendering TAR all the more important for parties seeking to stay afloat amidst today’s sea of data. Despite this, corporations and law firms interviewed by Kroll Ontrack were reticent to leverage this technology for several reasons, including the need for more hands-on training, concerns over defensibility and the fact that technology best practices are not yet standard. However, the judiciary’s approval of TAR emerged in five key cases in 2012, making TAR acceptance, adoption and best practices imminent.

Problem #2. Case analytics are primitive.

In the course of this research, law firms and corporations reported difficulty trying to understand their discovery data across multiple cases. Correspondingly, Gartner notes that most organizations today use a reactive approach to the ediscovery process and struggle to manage their archived documents. Ediscovery professionals are asking for more useful metrics to maximize predictability, affordability and defensibility across a case portfolio. The desired metrics include, but are not limited to: volume analytics per custodian and across cases; spending totals per matter, per file type and per location; production statistics that include the number of times a document has been produced; search metrics; and collection and preservation information to show past ediscovery activity.

Problem #1. Ediscovery is transactional.

Organizations surveyed by Kroll Ontrack are asking for repeatable and predictable – not ad hoc – ediscovery processes. Today, it is not uncommon for ediscovery practices to be invented and reinvented from matter to matter, and legal professionals seek to exchange this project-oriented approach for a more defensible process-oriented approach.

“The lifecycle of any issue evolves from chaotic innovation to rote standardization, and ediscovery is no different,” added Lange. “The solution requires a business-focused strategic effort, tightly integrated with overall information management practices and comprehensive technology solutions.”

To download a full copy of “The Five Daunting Problems Facing Ediscovery” visit: https://www.krollontrack.com/library/5dauntingproblems_krollontrack2013.pdf

About Kroll Ontrack Inc.
Kroll Ontrack provides technology-driven services and software to help legal, corporate and government entities as well as consumers manage, recover, backup, search, analyze, produce and present data efficiently and cost-effectively. In addition to its award-winning suite of software, Kroll Ontrack provides data recovery, data backup, data destruction, electronic discovery and document review. For more information about Kroll Ontrack and its offerings please visit: www.krollontrack.com.


Media Contact: Alison Koski, 212-331-8436, AlisonK@text100.com

Worldwide Big Data Technology and Services 2012–2016 Forecast, IDC (Dec. 2012).

Market Trends: Automated, Analytical Approaches Drive the Enterprise E-Discovery Software Market, 2013, Gartner (Dec. 18, 2012).