The volume of electronic-stored documents is increasing dramatically year over year, which shines a light on the critical importance of e-discovery — the ability to efficiently and accurately search the contents of electronic documents that have been created, disseminated and stored by legal firms and similar organizations handling sensitive information.
Since the adoption of the 2006 Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, legal and court representatives no longer have to rely on conventional requests to produce paper documents for examination. But that also means organizations must have a reliable document management system in order to be able to produce the requested information expeditiously — electronically or otherwise.
The need to improve e-discovery
Consider the challenges. In most businesses, documentation in the form of email and word-processing documents can number in the tens, even hundreds of thousands. Any of these documents could be the subject of potential litigation, which means organizations must prioritize retention and access policies for electronic information. When litigation occurs, attorneys must know how electronic documents will be reviewed and produced, and who will bear the cost.
Organizations will often ask, “How long do we have to keep records of documents?” Certainly this was a more pressing question prior to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, but it remains an important concern for businesses today. With paper documents, file cabinets and boxed storage take up valuable space or add costs associated with offsite storage. Not to mention the risks associated with fire, theft and water damage. Furthermore, some files are stored on unsupported media such as magnetic tape and need to be converted to readable file types.
Organizations implementing document management systems must also contend with change management. Employee compliance is critical to the success of any document management strategy, as reinforced in a 2015 International Legal Technology Association (ILTA) report. In the survey of legal firm IT leaders, “change management” was identified in three of the top five technology issues within firms, including managing user expectations and users’ acceptance of change being two of the top three.
Legal document solutions
Fortunately, Nuance offers a document management system for legal firms and organizations that is proven to be easy to use and intuitive for employees while addressing the critical needs associated with e-discovery and workflow consistency. When preparing for discovery, collaborating with associates or filing with the court, Nuance helps you ensure that every document is processed accurately and efficiently. Our secure, integrated legal document workflow tools and cost-recovery solutions help you simplify expense management, streamline systems and improve compliance for increased productivity. Even better, Nuance encourages user adoption with an intuitive interface that meets governance policies and is consistent across all access points.