Feel Confident in Your eDiscovery Results by Validating Search Terms

Ensuring the validity of search terms is an important – and sometimes overlooked – step in the eDiscovery process. eDiscovery teams should know that their set of search terms and phrases are generating accurate results, to ensure an efficient document review, and make certain that the documents returned satisfy the production request. Attorneys have to be sure they are not receiving false positive hits on search terms so they can confidently go to opposing counsel and the court to demonstrate they have done their due diligence. The key is to validate results in a time- and cost-efficient manner.

The EDRM offers several methodologies for validating search term results. At Gulfstream Legal Group, we follow the EDRM’s guidelines, but have created our own best-practice methodology. Why did we bother to further innovate a process that has been so well defined? We found that established methodologies just take too long to get results. Our clients needed to know immediately whether their search terms and phrases were generating valid results. If they are not, then clients need immediate feedback on how to refine searches to better find documents.

Our process starts by leveraging our analytical tools to create a a review of a statistical sampling of documents, followed immediately by a report on accuracy and precision. If results are poor, we stop right away, and our eDiscovery Review Project Managers work with the case team to adjust errant search terms. We only proceed when terms return documents that are acceptable for both accuracy and precision. Once accepted, we draw a second validation sample that checks for recall. If results for recall prove to be poor, we again target false negatives and adjust terms until it is acceptable. Once recall is within acceptable margins, we consider search terms and phrases to be valid.

Our process is based on the same mathematical formulas used in technology-assisted review that have been validated and approved by courts. However, we are able to apply technology available in Relativity to improve the speed of obtaining validation. In an industry where time is money, our search term validation process saves both.

By providing immediate information to eDiscovery teams, our clients can quickly know if their search terms are on track, and if not, can adjust. With our process, our clients can be assured they will review as few documents as possible but feel confident in their results.

For more information on our eDiscovery services, click here. To reach out to one of our experts, complete the form here.