While some companies do get in trouble for not saving documents for the required retention period, most face the opposite problem: Their de facto policy is to save nearly all documents forever. This ongoing accumulation drives up storage costs and increases the risks and costs of discovery in the event of litigation or investigations. Few companies implement ongoing, routine deletion of electronic information, but they should.
Before hitting the delete button organizations need to ensure that their deletion processes are defensible. Simply stated, a defensible process ensures that organizations do not delete documents they need to retain or preserve, and provides some level of protection against legal opponents who down the road may ask pointed questions on why specific documents have been deleted.