Editor’s Note: Given the changing environmental and economic conditions based on the outbreak and impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), eDiscovery professionals are considering business revisions to their 2020 plans and also making or accelerating eDiscovery decisions supporting the collection, processing, and review of electronically stored information (ESI). One of the key revision and decision areas that business, legal, and IT professionals in the eDiscovery ecosystem are currently having to consider is how they plan for and execute the core eDiscovery task of review in today’s new world. From review market sizing to remote review decisions, the following update* provides context and considerations that may be helpful for eDiscovery decision-makers as they consider the critical eDiscovery task of review during 2020.
Revisions in Market Size: A New Review Estimate
In considering the relative costs of the three core eDiscovery tasks of collection, processing, and review, in 2020, the core task of review is estimated to represent approximately 68% of total eDiscovery expenditures. While the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) appears to be having a substantial impact on the economics and execution of eDiscovery, it does not appear at this early juncture in the evaluation of its on-going impact to have significantly altered the task percentage estimates in 2020 for collection, processing, and review.
Chart 1 – eDiscovery Relative Core Task Expenditures – 20201 – eDiscovery Relative Core Task Expenditures – 2020
Initial estimates (November 2019) suggested the market size for the review task of eDiscovery to be at $8.61B during 2020. Revised modeling estimates that take into consideration the legal landscape changes driven by the outbreak and impact of COVID-19 have reduced market size estimations for the review task of eDiscovery by approximately 23%, with the revised working estimate now being $6.65B for 2020. The model takes into consideration the generally standard market growth in the first quarter of 2020 as well as adjustments to revenue estimates based on marketplace changes during the last three calendar quarters of 2020.
Chart 2 – eDiscovery Market for Review – 2020 – Revision2 – eDiscovery Market for Review – 2020 – Revision
Initial market model estimates for 2020 (non-published) suggested that approximately 90% of reviews would take place onsite, while almost 10% would be performed remotely. However, with the outbreak and impact of COVID-19 and the corresponding location-dependent travel and group aggregation restrictions, revised estimates for the percentage of reviews conducted onsite have been reduced from 90% to 10% for 2020. Correspondingly, the estimated percentage of reviews to be performed remotely in 2020 has increased from 10% to 90%.
Chart 3 – eDiscovery Relative Core Review Task Expenditures – 2020 – Revision3 – eDiscovery Relative Core Review Task Expenditures – 2020 – Revision
When applying revised market model estimates for the percentage of reviews conducted onsite or remotely to the revised review revenue estimates for 2020, it appears that the remote review market will increase from original market size projections of $0.86B to $4.28B. Additionally, the onsite review market will decrease from original market size projections of $7.75B to $2.37B. The model also takes into consideration the generally standard secure remote review to onsite review percentage ratio in the first quarter of 2020 as well as adjustments of these percentages based on marketplace changes during the last three calendar quarters of 2020.
Chart 4 – eDiscovery Market for Onsite and Remote Review – 2020 – Revision4 – eDiscovery Market for Onsite and Remote Review -2020 – Revision
* These review-centric market size revisions developed by ComplexDiscovery will undoubtedly be reviewed and revised due to pandemic and recession economics. However, they may be beneficial for business, legal, and information technology professionals as they consider the increasing acceptance and market size trajectory for secure remote reviews in the conduct of eDiscovery.
The First Choice and Best Choice for Secure Remote Review: Considering HaystackID
Given the rapid changes in the review services environment during 2020, many organizations that have not previously employed remote reviews as part of their eDiscovery arsenal are now actively and aggressively evaluating secure remote review services. With that active and aggressive evaluation in mind, HaystackID continues to be uniquely positioned as the industry leader and most experienced provider in delivering secure remote review services for legal document reviews.
HaystackID’s first-to-market remote review infrastructure has been leveraged by AmLaw 100 and Fortune 500 clients for more than six years, with more than 425 projects completed to date. With more than 16,000 qualified reviewers available to support secure legal document reviews, HaystackID’s ReviewRight services continue to be the first choice and best choice for secure remote review for data and legal discovery professionals.
As not all secure remote review offerings and providers are equal, the following link to an objective set of qualifying questions and considerations may be helpful for law firms and corporations in their evaluation of remote review services.
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HaystackID serves more than 500 of the world’s leading corporations and law firms from North American and European locations. Our combination of expertise and technical excellence, coupled with a culture of white glove customer service, makes us the alternative legal services provider that is big enough to matter but small enough to care. Learn more today at HaystackID.com.