Archiving has become a bit of a dirty word in the industry, with many vendors peddling software that has dubious value, sold to customers with the portent of doubt, fear and legal action, but despite this there are still real world solutions available that resolve business requirements that are valid.
An email system is a highly optimised database and storage system that has been maximised to hold collaboration data and share that data with multiple individuals as fast as possible.
There are various ways of adding to that data through creation and receiving of additional items (calendar appointments, reminders, tasks etc.) but in simple terms this database shares data.
If the quantity of data grows too large, the reading of the data, the checking of the indexes and the communication between the system and the clients slows and the system can begin to cause issues. In this kind of case, it has traditionally been the case of a new server(s) being installed; an iterative process that eventually has led to problems.
By offloading stale data to an alternative database that has been maximised for quantity rather than speed and collaboration, we can manage the performance of the email system, without losing data or breaking the bank.
There are legal requirements that can be industry specific or indeed business specific that have an important HR role where an Archive is imperative, but the principle benefit of an Email Archive is data management which can improve the management, back up, maintenance and performance of an email system.