"E-discovery: Choosing the right vendor for e-discovery projects"
Few corporations have the internal resources or IT infrastructure to adequately assume responsibility for all potential services involved in an e-discovery project. Companies facing litigation will likely need to evaluate and eventually enlist service providers—or vendors—to facilitate their e-discovery obligations.
Some vendors consult on document identification and preservation issues, and others perform collections. Others process documents by taking the raw data and converting them into reviewable files. Vendors can manage document reviews and productions and even provide technology services and equipment for trials.
Although many service providers claim to be experts in e-discovery, not all of them are. It is therefore vital to find a competent and trustworthy vendor. Choosing a vendor should be approached in much the same way as selecting outside counsel. The temptation to find one "do-it-all" vendor may be strong, but it should be resisted. George Socha, president of Socha Consulting, cautions those seeking vendors to "recognize that we still live in a world of bespoke suits, not off-the-rack clothing." In this industry, "one size definitely does not fit all, and the right fit matters tremendously," says Socha. Therefore, before engaging a vendor, an organization, along with its counsel, should map out the scope and budget for the project.