When growing a company, you will realize that having an effective enterprise search integration into your database system is essential. Legal firms also fall in this category. Not only does it serve as a point for referrals, it saves on a lot of time and resources. The more deeply law firms are being woven with Information Technology, the higher the rate of data production. This data must be effectively classified and referred back to, in order to create any useful meaning.
Wikipedia defines enterprise search as “the practice of making content from multiple enterprise-type sources, such as databases and intranets, searchable to a defined audience”. This essentially means you have a private Google search, unique to your firm’s database. The significance of having enterprise search is to make documents on your network searchable, at the same time, being secure of access from outside parties.
We will share the main components of a realistic Enterprise Search.
Culture will refer to the unique selling point or area(s) of specialty of your law firm. This will be combined with the general characteristics of your firm, for instance, do you operate only online? Where does your firm operate? How big is your organization? What is the leadership structure like?
The company culture will guide you on the kind of Enterprise Search that you will require. Being able to match the right tool your firm’s operation will see the lawyers’ productivity boosted, turnaround times for litigations shortened and client satisfaction increase.
It goes without saying that your Enterprise Search will be hinged on its ability to manage content and present it in a way that’s easy for the user to quickly use (or leave aside). Your document management system is what will really guide the efficiency of Enterprise Search.
Juritool has powerful mechanisms to achieve efficient document management. By automatically using metadata of each individual file (which is the description of a document such as its category, summary, author, topics etc.), documents can be better sorted and associated into various categories and useful information siphoned out for the litigator’s use. Typically, Enterprise Search software, such as Microsoft SharePoint, will require metadata to be added manually.
There is normally a host of challenges within the organization which will tend to slow down productivity. With a vast document management system many tyro lawyers will feel overwhelmed when it comes to case research. They might not be clear on exactly what they are looking for and end up dragging on for too long. Research shows that newer lawyers will spend about thirty percent of the time on legal research alone. Not only do we end up with low productivity, hours of usage of research tools might translate to dear monthly subscriptions over the long-term. Other challenges facing legal firms could be the enterprise size, the rate of data being generated and even the ‘findability’ of relevant information.
Besides its cloud based proposal, Juritool suggests the KnowBox package which is geared towards big law firms with sensitive and large volumes of documents. A brief explanation of the KnowBox: It is basically a server box provided to your law firm and will be installed in your firm’s internal network (intranet). Juritool Knowbox is an Enterprise Search for Lawyers which generates metadata of legal documents automatically. It can extract scanned content using Optical Character Recognition (OCR), assigns them legal categories, summaries, topics and other properties in order to make them searchable and ‘browsable’.
Its powerful document management system will allow you simplify legal documents down to a series of drop down menus, each narrowing down the total number of results. This will then allow users to narrow a search to finer detail. The filter-based approach improves on the search capability and gives and Amazon-like experience, where you can select the brand, for instance Nike, and then move to specifying your shoe size.
For your organization to benefit from Enterprise Search, selecting a tool with the right capabilities is essential. It will be able to coordinate with its native (or separate) document management system in optimizing results during a search.
Juritool KnowBox is capable of integrating with many different internal systems such as SharePoint, Intranet, Documentum, Wiki, Local File System etc. Its default version contains an embedded document management system focused on law particularly. This document management system is capable of storing your firm’s documents as well as extracting text in the documents, whatever the format!
For any well-functioning document management system with an enterprise search functionality, there needs to be adequate feedback on its level of performance in order to help improve the entire system.
For those wanting a feel of Juritool, there is a free two week trial of the tool, giving you access to most of the mentioned features for your analysis. You can try it here and let us know what challenges you have experienced, so that we can improve your experience.
Juritool has paid close attention to the value of Enterprise Search in order to help you become a more efficient firm. Start your trial today and have a feel of how efficiency feels like!