Email is overwhelmingly increasing daily, creating a nightmare for both IT and the end user. As limiting mailbox sizes are being exceeded and end users being forced to delete important and/or irreplaceable information, frustrations are skyrocketing within mid- to enterprise-level organizations. Legal compliance is either being ignored or broken, and ignoring it is putting information and individuals at risk. Most organizations have not written policy for email management and, instead, have possibly implemented a short-term solution by saving attachments within each PC or network. Placing attachments on the network applies a strain on space, and limitations on management, security, share ability, quick retrieval, and many other complications can create serious issues.
Electronic information is becoming more and more comparative legally to paper-based information. This means, for example, that contracts are being signed via e-mail or that e-mail is being used as evidence in court. This equalization process of electronic data is being driven by a series of laws, regulations, and requirements. In the USA, the most widely publicized regulation is the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX or SOA), which was devised to enhance the transparency, legality, and accountability of financial data provided by publicly traded companies.
Worldwide there are many other regulatory standards including HIPAA, AO, GDPdU, and Basel II, just to name a few. All of these laws and requirements have had a direct impact on how e-mail needs to be managed. For example, depending on the country, if an e-mail includes an electronic signature that meets signature law requirements, then it must be viewed as a legally binding original document that must be centrally administered and stored for long-term access. Information sent by e-mail that may be relevant for tax purposes must (according to the GDPdU) be stored in a digital format that provides immediate as well as long-term access to a tax agency (usually 6 to 10 years). No company or organization will be able to avoid meeting these compliance issues, so finding the correct solution is imperative.
Eliminating Risk, Lost Information, Frustration, and Unnecessary Expenses
Without company wide e-mail guidelines, e-mail will continue to be considered an employee’s personal mail. When business-related information is lost, damaged, stolen, and manipulated, your company is at risk of legal ramifications or unprofessional embarrassment. What if an employee is on vacation is deceased, or his/her employment is terminated? Accidents can also happen by erasing information or malicious intent to disrupt your company’s integrity or processes. In order to provide quality service with limited to no legal exposure and extended response times, a consistent approach to archiving all business information, including electronic mail must be implemented.
Either a per-user isolated solution or a company-wide mandatory solution can be implemented. Each e-mail account user can be responsible for individual saving/import emails and their attachments, or a more systematic and automated turn-key solution can be developed. Just as documents and files are automated or individually scanned and/or saved to IMS, any email or attachment may also be managed. Automated information could have data inputted within one or multiple profiles/index fields. Some aspects require one of our 3rd Party integrated partners.
E-mail has become a core communication medium in the business world and is well on its way to replacing letters and faxes. It’s no wonder then, that finding the ultimate professional and systematic filing method for handling electronic correspondence has become so important. Contracts, proposals, letters, and more, all delivered within seconds to one or multiple recipients; and higher security methods using encryption and password authentication has replaced any need for document handling/time, printing, faxing, or postage expenses. But what are we all going to do with so many electronic messages? Less than 20% of companies have tackled the issue of properly storing e-mail. Even fewer have implemented their own e-mail policies. Yet the need to organize e-mail--to store them and file them in a logical and efficient way--is becoming more and more important. Learn more below: