Think Upstream When Migrating Your IG and eDiscovery to the Cloud

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There’s been an evolution in every industry to moving to the cloud. But IG and eDiscovery might just be one of the last to take this leap.

With most general office data systems--including M365, Slack, G-suite, Confluence, and more--already in a cloud environment, at this point it’s not a question of if, but when more of the legal industry will move these types of software and processes as well.

There are many challenges and benefits to migrating your IG and eDiscovery to the cloud, which I discussed in a recent edition of the IPRO Morning Show.

In this blog summary, I’ll discuss some of them.

Think upstream with data

Migrating to the cloud is different for every organization. What works for a small law firm may not work for a large legal department in, say a financial services organization that must save some files differently to adhere to regulatory compliance.

Additionally, while cloud storage is relatively inexpensive, if an organization moves all data to a hosted environment, recurring costs adds can up quickly. And migrating everything often adds more work downstream when they need to manage it for eDiscovery.

By thinking upstream, organizations can be proactive in deciding which data they migrate to the cloud to minimize any downstream problems. Before moving any information, best practice is to classify and analyze it in-place, where it sits. This can help determine what data they don’t need, what’s duplicative, and what might be sensitive which allows them to purge, archive or segment it before beginning a migration.

Really scoping your data before a migration also helps determine what data you DO need to keep, such as what’s relevant, or what might be relevant down the road, so you can move only that into the cloud or another location.

Think upstream with IG software

As we’re discussing data management, thinking upstream for your IG solution also can help your downstream eDiscovery.

There are still a lot of organizations that need a hybrid IG solution because they are going to maintain data in their local systems but also move other data to the cloud. They need an IG system that sits in the cloud that reads all cloud repositories, but can also read all their file systems, to ensure the governance of all their data.

Ultimately, if you can manage IG in the cloud via single interface for both cloud and on-prem solutions, you’ll get that single view of all your data you need to ensure downstream reporting and eDiscovery is more accurate and efficient.

Think upstream with processes

Organizations also need to think upstream with their processes. Just because they have processes today for how they manage their on-prem data doesn’t mean they will be applicable when they move to the cloud. You need to look at each process you are doing today and what that’s going to look like in the cloud. You may need to develop new processes for some areas.

But by solidifying your processes upstream—before a cloud migration—you can ensure a smoother transition when you go live.

Migration processes also must be planned before data transfer can begin. Migration is not something that can happen overnight. It needs to be planned for and done in stages.

And organizations should go live over a weekend so they can test the new environment.

There’s a lot of factors and best practices to look at when moving to the cloud.

But by thinking upstream, organizations can ensure better downstream outcomes for how they use their IG and eDiscovery solutions in the cloud.

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