Staff Quits and deletes all emails?!?

April 22nd, 2016

For the third time in the last year, we have been called upon to try and recover email that was deleted by an employee right before they unexpectedly quit. In all cases, the employee’s email contained important client-related correspondence. In all cases, the employee deleted the email just to cause trouble. How can this be avoided?

  1. Make sure all staff members use their ‘corporate’ email account for all work-related communications.   We come across companies that have ‘official’ email accounts yet their staff still use gmail, aol, bellsouth, and other email systems for business email. When employees use personal email accounts for business purposes, it is impossible to track, backup and protect the data.
  2. Set up a ‘journaling’ mailbox. This hidden mailbox is set up to store a copy of every email sent and received by any staff member. The copying happens automatically and silently. No one has access to this mailbox other than the owners of the company. If a user deletes their email, a copy is still stored in the journaling mailbox. Cost? About $5 per month.
  3. Implement a centralized practice management (PM) system that stores client-related emails and make sure everyone uses it.   Once an email is saved into a PM system, it becomes a permanent part of the client’s record and is no longer tied to an employee’s inbox. Anything an employee does to their email system will not affect data stored in the PM system.

This is not a comfortable subject, and most managers and owners believe it can never happen to them. With proper planning, client-related communications can be safeguarded even in the event of intentional deletion of emails.

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