In this article we look at some of the main issues that relate to email compliance and businesses.
Most businesses continue to correspond with their clients via email. But for some businesses keeping track of those emails is required for compliance.
As well as ensuring compliance with laws and regulations, good email management is also useful for internal governance and monitoring.
Why Retain Copies of Emails?
Here are 3 key reasons why you might need to retain emails :
In the event of a dispute, emails can be useful evidence in bringing or defending a claim. Often orders are placed and accepted by email. Terms and conditions governing a contract are also referred to or attached to emails.
Accordingly, ensuring good email management is crucial in ensuring that if a dispute arises, that relevant documentation can be found easily and efficiently. Failure to disclose or locate emails can often be the difference between winning or losing a case.
Sector Specific Requirements
Certain industries may be subject to specific regulatory requirements. For example, in the telecommunications sector may be required to retain email for a specific period.
The financial services sector is also tightly regulated and in the UK all business emails sent and received must be stored, sometimes indefinitely. In the US, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act introduced strict email compliance requirements following the Enron scandal.
Other professional services (such as accountants and law firms) may also be subject to industry standards in the event of a claim for negligence.
Data Protection Laws
Several countries have data protection laws that allow data subjects to ask for details of personal information that is being held about them. If a request is received, the business must be in a position to access and comply with the request, often in a short period of time.
Accordingly, a good email management system is critical to ensure that appropriate action can be taken to retrieve information including any relevant emails.
Email Compliance Solutions
There are several options and solutions available for managing email compliance. Traditionally an email archive solution or email backup are the most trusted. However these solutions are not always easy to use when trying to search or locate emails.
Often a combined approach is needed and more businesses are now opting to file emails with their CRM solutions or other third party matter management software. This is helpful as it enables emails to be accessed easily in the future.
Many of these solutions however rely on user input. Emails must be identified and then manually assigned to a particular client, contact or matter. If the user forgets to complete this action, then the email may remain ‘lost’.
A better solution is an automated one, where emails are automatically synchronised with the relevant matter without the users intervention. Yet these are rarely available.
How Can Threads Help With Email Compliance?
Threads is a middleware solution that can be used to automatically assign emails to particular matters and task to contact records and deals. It is currently used by several HubSpot users to do just this. However Threads can be used with any third party solution provided that there is an API.
If you would like to know how Threads can help your business email integration needs then drop us a line today at email@example.com.