Knowledge management in a law firm is a challenging undertaking, most of the time. Regardless of technology and automation, it requires active participation from lawyers, and a strategy for identifying, capturing, cleansing and then sharing precedents and other work product related knowledge. There is however an exception to this hard and fast rule: the ease with which enterprise search can be implemented in the firm and its enthusiastic reception by the firm. Finding documents and other relevant information across offices and systems is now easier than ever. What are the breakthroughs that allow a firm to succesfuly roll-out a crowd-pleasing search solution in the space of one quarter?
- Relevancy – this of course is the key to a good search solution. And the latest crop of search engines and their ability to decipher the “meaning” of a document, not only simply looking for keywords, returns the right results quickly. Lawyers find documents they did not know about, and that are relevant to their work. This is a consistent message from our clients who have deployed enterprise search.
- Legal specific – law firms have a unique set of needs when it comes to finding documents and information. Lawyers are looking for documents, but also for relevant expertise, and matter-related information. This is the context in which their “find” gains even more value. And a few vendors now step up to the plate to provide “out of the box” solutions that instantly make sense to lawyers who use them.
- Quick adoption – enterprise search is “hot”. Yes, amazing. Can technology other than iPads be “hot”? With little or no training required, lawyers consistently and overwhelmingly love the tool. It’s a quick win for knowledge management in the firm and a leverage point for less glamorous, but important, initiatives that usually take more time and effort to implement.
But the story does not end there. Once implemented, the firm can leverage its search engine as a "middleware" solution. It's an ideal tool for retrieving information from across multiple sources for presentation in other systems, such as the firm's portal. And it does not need to look like a classic search interface. It can be used to search, filter, and then present dynamic content that is otherwise difficult to cull and publish manually.
Just like any other technology though, enterprise search is only as good as its implementation. And ii3 has developed methodologies and gained experience with a large number of implementations across the industry – with all major vendors. Our collaboration with your team, best practices and close relationship with the vendors, will ensure a successful roll-out.
Learn more about enterprise search:
Successful enterprise search in the firm ii3's Shy Alter interviews Kirk Scruggs, Patrick DiDomenico and Kathleen Hogan
Recommind - Search in the legal enterprise and emerging trends ii3's Shy Alter interviews Recommind's Derek Schueren
Innovation - The Potential of Portal and Enterprise Search
Case Study | Fraser Milner Casgrain and Recomind Decisiv Search