With a number of legal software companies introducing new eDiscovery products recently, it’s understandable that many law firm CIOs and in-house legal departments are scratching their heads about which platform might be the best fit for their unique needs.
Legaltech News tackled this challenge recently and spoke to a pair of prominent eDiscovery attorneys for advice about the questions that every buyer ought to ask before embarking on an initiative to upgrade their eDiscovery software.
Here are a few of instructive suggestions along with some commentary:
1. How will people use the technology?
It’s important to identify how the attorneys are actually planning to use the platform, writes Zach Warren of Legaltech News. For example, while litigation support staff may tend to focus on the pure eDiscovery technology elements, the key driver for attorneys is how to use the technology to expedite review or maintain quality for example.
2. What are the platform’s data analytics capabilities?
Experts advise that it’s important to consider various types of analytics that can be used in the average eDiscovery review to reduce volume and increase efficiency.
“Experienced litigation teams typically avoid using analytics on smaller cases because it’s perceived to be cost prohibitive. Litigators should have access to analytics no matter the size of the case, with the flexibility of allowing litigation teams to dial up whatever they need and when they need it, from PreDiscovery all the way through Production, for any case.”
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3. Should I choose just one platform or look at multiple products?
This shouldn’t even be a question, according to the experts interviewed by Legaltech News. They argue it’s a “no brainer” for legal professionals to choose one platform that applies one process across the eDiscovery workflow in order to achieve maximum efficiencies and deliver consistency.
4. Where will the data reside?
“With data security looming large on the radar of not only law firms but their clients as well, firms need to make some tough decisions as to whether they want to hold all of the data entering the platform behind their own firewall,” writes Mr. Warren.
According to Mr. Ashbacher, a state-of-the-art software platform should be available to customers in way that works best for them – an internally or externally hosted environment, whichever option works best for the buyer’s financial and data security needs.
The primary questions that litigation teams ought to ask before jumping into a project to buy a new eDiscovery platform ultimately revolve around issues such as speed, efficiency, smart analytics and cost predictability. Experts advise that the more preparation work you do on the front end, the more likely you’ll have a satisfactory result at the finish line.
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Photo credit: Flickr, Ryan, Question Mark (CC BY 2.0)