Accelerating Spreadsheet Redactions with XDD BlackBar

Performing redactions of spreadsheets can be one of the most logistically-complex and time-consuming aspects of preparing documents for production.  The traditional approach – converting spreadsheets to multi-page TIFFs and drawing redactions on the images page-by-page – takes substantial time and manual effort, and results in produced materials of minimal practical utility.  

How much time can be saved by performing native spreadsheet redactions with XDD BlackBar™ Excel Native Redaction Tool instead?



To compare the time and effort required for the two approaches, we identified a recent live case in which a group of large spreadsheets had been redacted in the traditional, image-based way.  We took these 75 spreadsheets, which ranged from 1 to 7805 pages in length, and re-completed the same redaction work completed in the case performing native redactions with BlackBar instead.


In the original, image-based redaction of these 75 spreadsheets, 488.5 minutes of reviewer time (roughly a full 8-hour shift) were required to complete the work.  Performing the same work with BlackBar took only 147.3 minutes (roughly the length of Captain America: Civil War) – a reduction of 70%.  Each of the 75 spreadsheets was completed in 5 minutes or less.

As you can see from the charts on the next page, BlackBar yields the greatest time savings benefits on the largest spreadsheets. In addition, when working with small spreadsheets (50 pages or less), BlackBar cut the required time in half as well.

BlackBar also yields additional time savings from its identification and automated handling of duplicate spreadsheets.  In this test set, BlackBar identified 18 duplicate spreadsheets for which redactions could be copied from another file, which saved over an hour by itself.


Using BlackBar to redact spreadsheets natively saves substantial time over image-based redaction, automatically handles duplicates, and allows for vastly superior native production of spreadsheets. With time savings of 70% overall and 50% even on small spreadsheets, any case with spreadsheets to redact would realize savings from employing BlackBar instead of a traditional image-based redaction workflow.

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