Takeaways From Watching Lawyers Use Tech
Dan Carmel, Chief Marketing Officer of iManage document management system, shares some lessons on enterprise software reached by analyzing customer surveys of more than 2,000 attorneys.
He points out that the biggest change in the law document management today is not the technology, but its users. “The new professionals” as Carmel terms them are younger than 32 (most large law firms are staffed by attorneys below this age) and they exhibit new attitudes toward technology and new expectations.
The new professional is most often mobile and regularly uses multiple devices. An attorney’s desktop is now highly likely to feature a desktop with two monitors, a USB headset, one or two smartphones and a tablet.
They also expect to be able to gain more value from the stored information through search and analytics. It’s not simple storage and management they want – they seek key insights from the information available.
Basically, what they find most valuable is a consumer-like experience with security and functionality of corporate software.
Here are some important takeaways that Carmel reflects on.
Communications not documents
It is actually various forms of communications that are stored now, not documents alone, even though the systems are referred to as “document management”. Information is today kept in emails, voicemails, SMS, images and other non-doc types. Managing communications has pushed content management out of focus.
Work product management systems should provide a full mobile experience, not something that imitates a desktop. Native mobile apps, properly secured in case of theft and lost, accommodate for the mobility of the new professional.
Jobs not features
Focusing on the jobs the users are trying to perform rather than on features, allows the system developers to create a better flow and integration. This also enables more reliable security of the data. By modeling jobs rather than developing separate features, one-click solutions are enabled that maintain security across systems.
As we said before, plain storage won’t do anymore. The user must be able to infer something from the stored data and obtain some insights. Improving search, content analytics, process collaboration and automation are crucial for enhancing user experience and productivity.
In many companies the software hasn’t changed to meet the changes in user expectations. A vast number of companies still uses old versions of their software. Updating is the quickest and most cost-effective way of refreshing your IT environment to ensure your employees are productive and satisfied with the systems being used. Updates provide you the full advantage of the software you use, so use it!
The benefits from keeping up with the times when it comes to enterprise software are multiple. First of all, efficient software will enhance the productivity of employees and secondly, the employees will be much more satisfied. Most importantly, increased productivity means increased profit – so stay competitive and rethink the tools you are using to manage your company data and files.