Friday, November 13, 2009

Science of Calculating eDiscovery Volumes and Cost ... How so? ... Really?!?

Recently the term "Predictive" is redefining how organizations are viewing legal discovery. "Predictive" in the legal industry refers to the ability to accurately estimate the amount of electronically stored information that will be discoverable and potentially responsive. Which ironically is now an official science as law students with a SocialMedia background now have hope for effective use of their $300K Juris Doctor credentials. Who would have predicted that 5 years ago?

...Heck Technology is just pushing buttons... LOL

In order to be "Predictive" there is quite a bit of prep work involved now commonly being referred to as ECA or Early Case Assessment. ECA is achieved by utilizing Experience with Conceptual tools for the Analysis of electronically stored information. Ironically this concept is nothing new to a seasoned Project Manager and Litigator who actually had to be innovative during the origins of the Dalkon Shield Litigation.

Today's buzz is a direct result of how most companies have neglected common sense organization of records because of its electronic origin.

"...no worries I can just seach the entire network to find where I saved that file...."

This leads to the Legal First Response Team (LFRT) swooping in to quickly assess the scope of the land and define a plan to mitigate risk. The basics involve understanding the Client, understanding their retention habits and uncovering the truth. Not childs play by any means and requires more than book knowledge defined by an 8x10 hanging frame. All the while fees are mounting while the LFRT is snooping about paper, computers, networks and personal storage devices in search of relevance.

Five Custodians can readily present more than 3 terabytes of electronically stored information during discovery for review ... ECA then becomes "Enough Co$t$ Already"... says John Martin, CTO at RedFile

In the majority of matters the concept is use of an ECA tool will lower the amount of data collected & preserved thus the lower the cost of discovery. FALSE!

Once more FaaaaAALSE!

ECA solutions are being presented as excellent means to cull and pre-tag data for a later review by dramatically reducing Attorney Review Time. True .. Except most ECA models are priced by the gigabyte on the total amount of uncompressed data ingested into the ECA application. How is that "Predicitve"?

Based on the overall concensus from the ACC Boston 2009 Conference is for legal departments to get control back by investing in in-house resources for identification of relevance in the discovery phase. The day of grin and bear it exorbinate fees are dying faster than the crash of the financial markets... successful providers will present inclusive innovative flat fee models with a re-ocurring commitment based on consistency of service, quality and proven technology resources.

Provide a formula (experience+techtools+service) that work for every matter ...
Eliminate the variable cost to identify discoverable evidence ...
Evaluation of Risk based on ROI ...

What if a provider offered ECA with advanced text analytics and a first pass review tool on 1 terabyte of uncompressed data for $50K? ...

That would be "Predictive"!
That presents more than $200K in savings based on current industry models
That gives prudence back to the ROI premise for mitigating risk before propounding litigation
That minimizes cost for responding to Regulatory Investigations
That is INNOVATION!!!

Per Gig v Flat Fee ECA? .... Seriously???

The views are those of the Author and soley represent the Author by no means do they represent any entity or employer by which the Author is affliated