Email Journaling and Email Archiving: Defined and Distinguished

Businesses today rely on electronic mail as a primary tool for communication. In line with this, there are also several reasons why emails should be stored and kept. Because of the role email communication plays in how a business operates, storage is no longer optional but has become a necessity.

Some regulations require businesses to keep and archive email communications. Adherence to these regulations determines a company’s compliance. Unfortunately, non-compliance can be detrimental to a business. Imposable fines are quite expensive and will lead to litigation concerns.

Many companies have built-in features in their office systems that allow for the storage of email communication. These are email journaling and Office 365 email archiving. For some, these two methods may appear similar, but there are crucial differences between each way which impacts how they benefit the operation of a business.

Email journaling

By definition, Office 365 journaling pertains to the recording of all types of communication used in the archiving and retention strategies implemented by a company. Journaling also provides tools that allow easier retention policies through recording the messages of each user. As part of a company’s effort to meet strict regulatory guidelines, it records all communications that occur as each employee performs their daily responsibilities.

Through a journaling system, a copy of each piece of communication will get stored in a separate mailbox. This process is continuous, which creates a stockpile of mailboxes containing journaled information. In the long run, this can become problematic because servers can get jammed with information. How is this pitfall resolved?

A mitigating procedure adopted by most businesses is to employ a third-party solution such as cloud business intelligence. This solution aims to fix the problem by making email journaling a scalable feature. In most cases, cloud-based services have integrated features for journaling where journaled data is customizable according to the policies of the organization.

Email archiving

Email journaling merely copies communication and stores it for compliance. In contrast, email archiving solutions pertain to the capability of moving a message from one storage location to another. In organizations where strict compliance is required, independent archiving is one of the best ways to remain in compliance. Archiving stores and secures only one copy of a particular communication soon after it has been sent or delivered to the receiver. What this does is to collect and store large amounts of communication in one location, allowing for easier retrieval.

Another unique feature of email archiving is that no alterations or deletions can be permitted once a message is archived. Email archiving is an effective way to protect communication and ensure optimum compliance with regulations.


Both of these methods can be adopted and used hand-in-hand by a business. Each solution comes with specific features and advantages. Several third-party solutions in the market today like Azure archive storage offer these methods of email storage integrated with cloud-based services. It is the responsibility of the business to determine the suitability of each option to their existing email retention policies.