Master Data Management Finally Meets E-Discovery

Michael Vizard

One of the major issues that IT people have with e-discovery is that it consumes a lot of IT's time that would be better spent providing real value to the business.

Given today's volatile legal climate, the folks at Daegis are making a case that it's time to acknowledge a new e-discovery reality. Instead of doing a new sweep of emails, documents and other information every time there is a new lawsuit, the e-discovery system should have a memory of what similar searches were made before. That's the approach to e-discovery that is being taken by Daegis in the form of a new "cross-matter methodology" that borrows concepts IT organizations typically associate with master data management.

All the data collected by the Daegis platform is stored within a master database, where it is fully indexed and files are stored natively in a single instance. A bi-directional connection is then established with the document review environment that enables the preservation of attorney work product - saving redactions, designations and annotations in the master database.

According to Kurt Jensen, executive vice president and chief operating officer for Daegis, this approach to e-discovery not only reduces the cost and time associated with complying with a request, it also results in greater awareness of the intellectual capital that is in the possession of the organization, which should make defending the company against frivolous lawsuits all the easier.

Most law firms get paid for their services by the hour, so the idea that IT should be used to reduce the number of billable hours might not be the first thing they think of as a sign of progress. But if you're in charge of paying the legal bills for lawsuits, the ability to respond to those lawsuits in a timely manner could easily save millions of dollars long before any court in the land actually issues a ruling that someone is sure to appeal anyway.

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