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Organizing and Aligning Different Approaches to eDiscovery
With the goal of helping eDiscovery providers and consumers establish a basic framework for organizing and aligning the elements of three commonly referenced approaches to eDiscovery, the following Basic eDiscovery Offering Framework is provided for your consideration and use.
Basic eDiscovery Offering Framework
The Basic eDiscovery Offering Framework is designed to help eDiscovery professionals cohesively consider how to share and compare service and product information as it relates to the conduct of eDiscovery regardless of the steps, model or best practices used by practitioners. The framework was initiated as part of an exercise to align the step, model and best practice tasks highlighted in the following three commonly referred to eDiscovery approaches:
+ Arkfeld’s Best Practices Guide for Electronic Discovery and Evidence – Technology Steps (Michael Arkfeld)¹
+ The Electronic Discovery Reference Model – EDRM (EDRM)²
+ Electronic Discovery Best Practices – EDBP (Ralph Losey)³
The framework provides for a common, high level group of five categories that appear to span the spectrum of potential eDiscovery tasks and can be used to help organize and align underlying legal requirements and technological capabilities. These five categories and their definitions are as follows:
General eDiscovery Offering Categories
+ Plan: Proactive establishment and execution of tasks, techniques and procedures designed to maintain the integrity of electronically stored information (ESI) and facilitate the conduct of ESI discovery throughout the litigation lifecycle.
+ Preserve: The execution of tasks, techniques and procedures designed to keep ESI safe from danger or harm throughout the litigation lifecycle.
+ Prepare: The execution of tasks, techniques and procedures designed to make appropriate ESI ready for examination and evaluation.
+ Review: The execution of tasks, techniques and procedures designed to examine and evaluate ESI in relation to audit, investigation or litigation objectives.
+ Share: The tasks, techniques and procedures designed to allow others to use appropriate ESI as part of an audit, investigation or litigation.
In addition to these category definitions, the following clarifying definitions are provided to share the description and relationships between tasks, techniques and procedures.
+ Task: A definite and specific instance or act of work.
+ Technique: The method in which a task is accomplished.
Procedure: The sequence of actions or instructions to be followed in accomplishing a task or series of tasks.
¹ Michael R. Arkfeld, Arkfeld’s Best Practices Guide for Electronic Discovery and Evidence, 4.39(c), 72 (2010-11 Ed.)
² Electronic Discovery Reference Model, EDRM.net, 2012.
³ Ralph Losey, Electronic Discovery Best Practices, ED