Delivering Email Archiving & Easing eDiscovery for Queens County District Attorney's Office

August 18, 2020

 

Queens County District Attorney - Case Study

 

The Queens County District Attorney's Office (QCDA) is a local government agency that is responsible for investigating and prosecuting criminal cases within the county of Queens (New York.) Nearly 1,000 employees work out of the DA’s four offices, including 350 attorneys.

 

Vital Stats

  • Client since 2012

  • 1000 potential users

  • Increasing complexity of archive retrieval

  • Migrating to Exchange from GroupWise

 

Business Challenge

 

For many years, QCDA used a commercially available email system which retained emails on each users’ local computer, or in different storage areas on their network. Susan Mazzella, Director of the Systems Management Bureau, said:

We wanted to consolidate all the archives into one location. We also wanted a solution that would allow us to grow into eDiscovery. And finally, we wanted to make the transition easy for the hundreds of end-users who would use the new system.

In 2012 the IT team started looking for an email archive solution that would work with their existing email system.

 

Critical Requirements

  1. Consolidate all the dispersed email archives to one location.

  2. Minimize the impact of the transition for end users.

  3. Implement email archiving with expansion into eDiscovery.

  4. Be operational on Office 365 and Exchange Online.

 

Application Evolution

 

When a person left the organization in the early years, their emails were discarded. Susan explains,

 

Electronic records were not as prevalent then as they are now. However, we decided to start retaining data even after people left us because we knew that, at some point, it would become a requirement. We knew that we had to retain this information and we had to make it searchable across the organization.

 

Today QCDA uses NetGovern for email archiving and for eDiscovery. Soon they will migrate from their existing platform to Office 365 and Exchange Online. QCDA can then add NetGovern’s newer products which will give them the ability to search beyond email and files to the many shared files having unique data structures such as video or audio files. That is a project that they are considering doing with NetGovern.

 

Working with NetGovern

 

Susan tells what it is like to work with the NetGovern people. “The people at NetGovern have been an absolute pleasure to work with. They make us feel like family. I don't know how else to say it. Whenever we have an issue or a problem, NetGovern never hesitates to get involved, night or day. The people really are the heart and soul of the NetGovern organization. Our ability to ask a question and get a quick response is never a problem." 

 

"Over the years we have done some major upgrades and migrations, and NetGovern has always taken an active part in all of that. They don’t just come in and push whatever the latest and greatest sales product is. They help and work with us through all upgrade and migration stages. That really is the best thing about them.”

 

Success at QCDA

 

Susan describes why NetGovern has been successful at QCDA. “NetGovern has made us so much more productive in conducting discovery searches for Freedom of Information Law searches and civil litigation suits against our organization. In many cases it has tremendously reduced the amount of time and effort for us to produce the proper discovery results. And we are finding that our case managers are now becoming more comfortable utilizing the tool as well."

 

“Put simply, the product works well in our environment,” Susan concludes. “It is an easy integration. No matter what migration challenges we had, the NetGovern people were more than willing to work through the challenges with us. They made us feel like family, more so than just a working business relationship and I think that is what makes the product such a success.”

 

The Bottom Line

 

The NetGovern eDiscovery tool is fabulous. It eases the pain of doing discovery. If you have ever received a complex discovery request, you can appreciate how time consuming and painful it can be. eDiscovery has been a productivity boost for us by eliminating these complex manual searches.

- Susan Mazzella, Director of the Systems Management Bureau, Queens County District Attorney's Office

 

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