Cost Justifying an Archiving Solution

There are a number of ways to justify the cost of an archiving solution. We have just published a new white paper in which we present three “before and after” scenarios that will cover a variety of scenarios for archiving and how they can help to reduce corporate costs. Here is one of the examples we included in the white paper.

End users sometimes delete content that they will need at a future date, such as word processing documents they have taken a considerable amount of time to write, an email with an important communication from a customer, or a presentation. Let’s again assume a 500-person organization and each employee needs to recover just one document each month. This results in a total of 6,000 documents that need to be recovered each year (500 employees x one document per month x 12 months). We will also conservatively assume that IT requires an average of only 15 minutes to recover each document from a backup tape.Assuming that IT might even have the bandwidth to recover all of these documents, IT staff members will spend a total of 1,500 hours annually (6,000 documents x 15 minutes per document) recovering this content. The total IT cost of document recovery, therefore, will be $75,000, the equivalent of three-quarters of a full-time IT staff member.

We will now assume that an archiving solution has been configured to allow individual users to access their own content. Assuming that five minutes will be needed to recover a document and that the average employee salary is identical to that of IT staff members ($50 per hour), then the total cost of employees recovering their own documents will be $25,000 annually (6,000 documents x five minutes of recovery per document x $50 per hour). The total annual savings compared to IT recovering the documents will be $50,000. Factor in the cost of the archiving system (average of $20,000 per year) and the cost savings from end-user access to the archive is still a significant $30,000 annually.

While many consider an archiving solution to be a primarily defensive tool – allowing organizations to support eDiscovery or regulatory compliance efforts, for example – it can also be a tool to enhance employee productivity and provide other benefits that can actually pay for the archiving solution in a relatively short period of time.

You can download the white paper here.