6 Crucial Tips for an Effective Email Retention Policy

June 01, 2017 by Jatheon

Email plays a vital role in modern business. It’s used to share ideas, discuss decisions and communicate changes. Without it, most modern businesses and agencies couldn’t function. This brings us to the issue of email retention. Emails are important documents which need to be retained just like any other important document.

Email archiving solutions can help you ensure that your emails are retained in accordance with legal and regulatory requirements. But there are other measures that can aid in keeping your email records compliant. A key measure among those is an email retention policy.

6 Tips to Keep Your Email Records in Compliance

1. Create a Policy

The first and the biggest step ‒ you need to create an actual email retention policy. Many companies make the mistake of assuming that everything will be fine. They leave it up to their employees to manage their own email and assume that the important emails will still be there when the time comes to produce them.

2. Manage Deletions

Unsurprisingly, the central email retention problem is the potential for important emails to be deleted. Your policy needs to contain strict guidelines regarding the deletion of business email. A simple rule of thumb is ‘if in doubt, don’t delete’.

3. Set Retention Periods

Each department and each document type need to have their own retention period. There are some legal guidelines that you can follow here. It’s advisable to add a little extra time on top of the legal requirement to ensure there are no mistakes.

4. Be Consistent

It is of key importance that these rules are applied across all departments and at every level of the business. Email retention policy only works if it’s applied to the whole business. The biggest mistake you can make is to assume that some departments don’t need to retain email.

5. Inform your Staff

Once you have an email retention policy in place, you need to make sure all of your staff are aware of it. Communicate the rules directly to the existing staff and include the retention policy in the staff handbook for new hires.

6. Enforce it

When you have a policy and an informed workforce, you need to ensure that the policy is followed. That means that email retention needs to be monitored at all levels, with responsibility placed upon individuals to manage sections of the company.

An email archiving solution can enable your company to deal with eDiscovery and regulatory requests. Click To Tweet

Having an email retention policy can be a lot of work and it doesn’t always work out as planned. However, the implementation of an effective email archiving solution can guarantee that your business will be able to deal with eDiscovery and regulatory requests successfully. Bear in mind that you might not be able to manage those requests without a policy.

Using an email archiving appliance has many benefits over traditional storage units. Find out more by downloading our free whitepaper “The Top 10 Benefits of Email Archiving” by clicking on the image below.

Download free whitepaper - The Top 10 Benefits of Email Archiving

 

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