How many retention categories should an organisation have? Does it depend on the size of the organisation? Should be many? Should it be a few? Well I think part of this ties in with the ‘need’ for many organisations to keep everything forever. These sorts of organisations probably don’t spend the time to get their lawyers involved in figuring out how to categorise emails and how long to keep them.
These sort of organisations end up with a small number of retention categories, but, it’s likely that they are X Years (e.g. 2-3) and ‘Forever’.
This might not be good for storage management as I’ve written about before.
The flip side is that organisations try to introduce a dozen or more retention categories. Trying perhaps to over-categorise items. Worse these organisations might add to this of categorisation over some time, or absorb other Enterprise Vault environments with other lists of retention categories.
It can get messy.
There are third party tools out there which help with merging and recategorizing emails, effectively moving, merging and combining some source retention categories (usually many) into target retention categories (usually fewer). Sometimes people use those tools, other times people will resort to using built in tools like exporting archives to PST and then reinvesting them.
Have you had to consolidate Retention Categories? How did you do it? Let me know in the comments below.