White Paper Summary

Document Retention: Can You Afford It?

Balancing the Costs and Risks of Electronic Records Retention Policies
Legal, regulatory and business requirements are highlighting the need to retain more documents, and to keep them for longer periods. However, many IT organizations are concerned about the cost of storing large archives of electronic records. This white paper illustrates alternative strategies that can meet requirements with modest IT costs, whille reducing the much larger costs and risks of compliance failure. 

Earlier white papers recommend that organizations retain more data, rather than less, and keep it for longer retention periods. This white paper addresses an objection that some IT managers will raise when presented with this policy recommendation: the belief that longer retention periods will greatly increase information technology costs, and that the organization cannot afford to adopt the recommended strategy. 

By comparing the costs and benefits of alternative retention technologies, this paper demonstrates that an organization can meet the minimum retention requirements with very little information (IT) cost impact, if such a strategy represents the appropriate balance of near-term and long-term costs and benefits. It also shows that, for many firms, an investment in intelligent archiving infrastructure can provide near-term IT cost reductions and productivity benefits, in addition to improved compliance and stronger litigation defense. Each organization must review the requirements, assess the risks, and adopt an appropriate set of policies, practices and IT solutions.

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