Archiving social media is crucial to your overall archiving action plan. In fact, social media, especially social media-based collaboration tools among co-workers, is becoming a more and more important business tool every day. Organizations can’t afford to ignore this growing barrage of data, which continues to grow whether you look at it or not. The constant expansion of data, coupled with ever-changing features, complicated functionality, and endless personalized settings, makes it hard to collect, preserve, and analyze critical data for compliance purposes or to meet certain legal requirements.
Knowing that, it’s key for companies to break down the process of organizing this data into simple, actionable steps. This way, you’ll be able to clearly know where your social media data is, where it needs to go, and how to handle it for years to come. Here are the five steps to a solid social media archiving action plan.
1. Evaluate your current social media use.
No longer does social media mean employees only using Facebook or Twitter during work hours: They’re using social media for work. This includes Slack, just one of many popular web-based communication platforms for teams and individual employees that are used to send instant messages, which can also be used for document sending and employee management controls.
2. Determine your social media policies.
Now that you have a good grasp on how your employees are using social media, it’s time to nail down your company’s social media policies. This means implementing policies that cross departments, where the IT department is as invested in the plan as HR. You’ll also want to determine how much of your employees’ social media usage is recreational or work-related and what threshold should be met.
3. Capture social media in native format.
Optional archiving means you want to be ready in case of an eDiscovery request or compliance regulation. The best way to do this is to follow the Electronic Discovery Reference Model, where you can be proactive when a request comes in, preserving your data once it’s received to be sure it’s not changed or deleted. When you’re doing a collection, you’ll want to retain the original metadata associated with the content. So when opposing counsel makes a request for your data in native format, you’ll be ready.
4. Get your chain of custody right from the start.
After you’ve culled and preserved your social media data, including embedded third-party data, you have one more step before presenting it for compliance or eDiscovery purposes. First, document all the steps you took to process, review, and analyze the relevant social media, which will decrease your risk of data spoliation. Save money, speed up the eDiscovery process, and get it right the first time.
5. Prioritize social media archiving in your overall information governance plan.
If you’re starting to assemble an overall information governance plan, it’s crucial to include social media at the top of your list. This is one of the fastest-growing aspects of data management, so handling this as part of your company-wide initiative is the place to start.
While taking care of your social media archiving seems time-consuming, it’s something you can’t ignore. The right social media archiving partner can help you make sense of the perceived mess, too. Collect, preserve, and analyze social media content that meets regulatory compliance regulations and impending eDiscovery or litigation requests and saves you time and money while keeping your social media data secure, updated, and preserved when a request or regulation comes up.
Ready to learn more about how to take a step-by-step approach to social media archiving? Learn more in our Real World Examples of Web Content Preservation Trends from Top Companies and drop us a line if you have more questions.