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How Long Do I Have to Store Project Data?

Data. Old data. Big piles of old data from so long ago that you can’t remember what the project was for, let alone who was running it or how. Do you really have to keep such data? Take a deep breath, because in many cases, the answer is yes.

When a project is over, companies must frequently still keep records of all project-related information for legal and regulatory purposes. Depending on the industry, data retention periods may be years, even decades. For instance, following installation of city or government electrical infrastructure, if a power line fails, it must be possible to refer back to project data from as much as ten years ago or more in order to determine who is liable.

You Need More than Just a Zip File

So, what’s the solution – Zip up your data and store it on a hard drive? Ah, if only it were so simple. However, proper archiving needs more, namely:

    • Data must be archived with the software used to create and manipulate it. Otherwise, it may be undecipherable or useless years later when new software and different data formats or fields are being used.
    • Archived information must be stored efficiently. Data files may be large and numerous, but archival solutions should ensure they can be stored cost-efficiently for easy retrieval at any time.
    • All archive files (data, applications, configurations, and so on) must be correctly backed up, so that in case of any problem on the primary system holding the archived files, a secondary system makes the files recoverable.
    • Archived files must be regularly tested for restoral and integrity to ensure all files can be accessed, read, and used, or that backup solutions can be used in case of problems.
      The processes above should be executed automatically to avoid manual errors or omissions, which requires having the tools or the expertise to automate correctly.

Will You (Ever) Find the Time and Resources?

For project management teams with new projects already looming, these auto archiving requirements may seem like a huge challenge. The time and effort required for successful archiving, maintenance, and retrieval are resources that don’t generate new project revenue. Attempts to restore archived data and maintain it (if in fact anyone has been assigned to do it) can slow down company systems that are supposed to help teams be more productive elsewhere. Disaster recovery management for archived files is also non-trivial, requiring ongoing planning, resources, and testing.

Yet, without all these regular routine actions, companies put themselves at risk. It only takes one power line failure, one incident of subsidence, or one out of bounds building energy bill – without access to past project information, a company could find itself defenseless against claims for liability and damages.

LoadSpring™ Can Tame the Monster for You

Over 17 years of experience with more than 90,000 clients has proved to us at LoadSpring that our customers need a trustworthy partner to offer them reliable auto archiving services. Naturally, we have the expertise to provide such services because we are leaders in hosted application and data management, and because we understand your needs.

LoadSpring Auto Archiving restores, checks, and monitors your archived data once per quarter (or as needed) and offers the backup and disaster recovery options that best fit your business needs. We turn your auto archiving monster into a friend ready to stand by you if a problem means you must reach back into the past for relevant information. So – Want to make friends today, mitigate your risk, and face the future with confidence? Call us at LoadSpring now and we’ll show you how we can take care of it all for you.

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