Revenue Expansion or Erosion? eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey Results – Summer 2017

The Summer 2017 eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey is a non-scientific survey designed to provide insight into the business confidence level of individuals working in the eDiscovery ecosystem.


The eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey

The eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey is a non-scientific quarterly survey designed to provide insight into the business confidence level of individuals working in the eDiscovery ecosystem.The survey consists of nine multiple choice questions focused on factors related to the creation, delivery, and consumption of eDiscovery products and services. The survey is open to legal, business, and information technology professionals operating in the eDiscovery ecosystem and individuals are invited to participate via the ComplexDiscovery blog, via social media, and via direct email invitations.

Initiated in January 2016, to date the survey has been administered seven times with 742 individual responses.

Summer 2017 Survey Results

The Summer 2017 Survey response period was initiated on July 6, 2017, and continued until registration of approximately 100 responses (July 31, 2017). This limiting of responders to approximately 100 individuals is designed to create linearity in the number of responses and ease the administration for each quarterly survey.

While individual answers to the survey are confidential, the aggregate results are published without commentary below to highlight the business confidence level of participants regarding economic factors impacting the creation, delivery, and consumption of eDiscovery products and services during the Summer of 2017.


n = 101 Respondents

1. Which of the following segments best describes your business in eDiscovery?
Part of the eDiscovery ecosystem where your organization resides.

  • Software and/or Services Provider – 39.6%
  • Law Firm – 34.6%
  • Consultancy – 16.8%
  • Corporation – 3%
  • Media/Research Organization – 3%
  • Other – 1%
  • Governmental Entity – 2%

2. How would you rate the current general business conditions for eDiscovery in your segment?
Subjective feeling of business performance when compared with business expectations.

  • Good –53.4%
  • Normal – 41.6%
  • Bad – 5%

3. How do you think the business conditions will be in your segment six months from now?
Subjective feeling of business performance when compared with business expectations.

  • Better – 43.6%
  • Same – 49.5%
  • Worse – 6.9%

4. How would you guess revenue in your segment of the eDiscovery ecosystem will be six months from now?
Revenue is income generated from eDiscovery-related business activities.

  • Higher – 50.5%
  • Same – 43.6%
  • Lower – 5.9%

5. How would you guess profits in your segment of the eDiscovery ecosystem will be six months from now?
Profit is the amount of income remaining after accounting for all expenses, debts, additional revenue streams, and operating costs.

  • Same – 49.5%
  • Higher – 39.6%
  • Lower – 10.9%

6. Of the six items presented below, what is the issue that you feel will most impact the business of eDiscovery over the next six months?
Challenges that may directly impact the business performance of your organization.

  • Budgetary Constraints – 20.8%
  • Increasing Volumes of Data – 20.8%
  • Data Security – 11.9%
  • Lack of Personnel – 14.9%
  • Increasing Types of Data – 21.7%
  • Inadequate Technology – 9.9%

7. In which geographical region do you primarily conduct eDiscovery-related business?
The location from which you are basing your business assessments.

  • North America (United States) – 88.0%
  • North America (Canada) – 5%
  • Europe (UK) – 4%
  • Europe (Non-UK) – 3%
  • Asia/Asia Pacific – 0%
  • Central/South America – 0%
  • Middle East/Africa – 0%

8. What are best describes your primary function in the conduct of your organization’s eDiscovery-related business?

  • Legal/Litigation Support – 74.2%
  • Business/Business Support (All Other Business Functions) – 21.8%
  • IT/Product Development – 5.8%

9. What are best describes your level of support in the conduct of your organization’s eDiscovery-related business?

  • Executive Leadership – 41.6%
  • Operational Management 34.6%
  • Tactical Execution – 23.8%

Graphical Depiction of Results and Original Survey Form

Provided below for your review and use is a graphical depiction of survey answers and a copy of the original survey form.

Summer 2017 eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey Unfiltered Results


eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey Meta Results

Provided for download from the following link is a high-level spreadsheet highlighting all survey responses since the initiation of the survey in January of 2016.

Download the Meta Results Excel Spreadsheet


The Fall 2017 Survey

The Fall 2017 Business Confidence Survey will open in late October of 2017. Click here if you would like to be invited to take the Fall 2017 Survey.

 Past Survey Results

Source: Original Research

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Business as Unusual? Eighteen Observations on eDiscovery Business Confidence in the Summer of 2020

The results of the recent Summer 2020 eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey present the unfortunate and continuing impact of COVID-19 on the business of eDiscovery. However, for these pandemic-driven results to be fully understood, they should be viewed through the contextual lens of the results of all nineteen surveys that have been administered to eDiscovery professionals since the inception of the eDiscovery Business Confidence Survey in early 2016.



Check Out the Observations Now!

ComplexDiscovery combines original industry research with curated expert articles to create an informational resource that helps legal, business, and information technology professionals better understand the business and practice of data discovery and legal discovery.

All contributions are invested to support the development and distribution of ComplexDiscovery content. Contributors can make as many article contributions as they like, but will not be asked to register and pay until their contribution reaches $5.

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