Why Your Current eDiscovery Software Might Not Be Right for Your Small Law Firm

06 December 2018 by Anith Mathai eDiscovery small-law-firm

Don’t be fooled into thinking the most expensive and well-marketed eDiscovery applications are always the best. Expensive, older-generation software is usually designed for larger firms. Instead, find a simpler, more affordable new-generation eDiscovery application.

Do you have the right eDiscovery software?

So, you’re dealing with more eDiscovery than ever before. And you’ve probably also invested in special eDiscovery software. But with so many applications on the market, how do you know if you’ve chosen the right one?

Small law firms have special requirements that often aren’t met.

Most of your cases are small. Probably under 100 GB. And you also don’t have a large budget for eDiscovery. Which is why, for example, software that targets larger firms would be a waste of your money. Instead, you need to be looking for affordable, easy-to-use software. And you’ll keep costs down by choosing software with only the core features small law firms like yours need.

So, what are the options? And can you do better?

Here are 3 different types of software, and only one of them is what you’re looking for

Option 1: Expensive software, complicated pricing

In the early days of eDiscovery, there was limited technology. So, eDiscovery providers had to develop custom software for each of their clients. Which cost a lot of money to do. So, they had to charge high prices. And only the large law firms would consider paying, because they had large cases which would give them a good return on their investment.

To complicate things further, they’d use different software for each eDiscovery step. So, you’d be charged separately for

  • Each GB of data to be processed by the software
  • Each page for OCR
  • Each document for deduplication
  • Each document for Bates stamping
  • Each additional person using the software

And each of these steps cost a lot of money – e.g., upwards of $300 for per-GB of hosting.

eDiscovery applications like these have been refined over time. But they’re still overpriced. And only larger firms should consider buying them. For small law firms like yours, they’re simply too bloated with features you’ll never need and will have to pay way too much for.

Option 2: Affordable software, complicated pricing

Improving technology lowered the barrier to entry into the eDiscovery world. This encouraged more providers to develop software. Which meant more competition. Which then drove prices down further. Soon, small law firms could afford the software – paying less than $100 a month (down from thousands of dollars, earlier). And they were now paying a per-GB rate for processing and storing their data.

But there were still problems:

  • You still had to pay separately for basic features. So, you’d still have to pay extra for each team member accessing the software. And you’d be charged per-GB of data that you uploaded and stored. And there’d be different per-GB pricing slabs (one for cases below 100 GB, one for those from 100-300 GB, etc.).
  • ‘Per GB’ pricing has its drawbacks. Yes, it’s flexible. You don’t have to decide in advance how much storage space you’ll need. And you’re paying only for the storage space you use. But there’s a lot you’ll need to clarify. Things like per-seat licensing costs, processing fees, and overage. That means emails and phone calls back-and-forth. All before you’ve even uploaded your first file. Also, for most small and solo law firms, the size of a case keeps changing. So, with per-GB pricing, how do you calculate what you owe? Say you start with 3 GB of data. Then you delete 1 GB after a couple of weeks. What’s your bill at the end of the month? Do you pay for the largest size your case got to–3 GB? Or its average size–2.5 GB? (Learn more about per-GB pricing and its drawbacks.)

Option 3: Affordable software, simple pricing

These are the new generation of eDiscovery applications, designed specifically for small law firms like yours. They make full use of cloud technology to give you rock-bottom prices and allow you to store an almost infinite amount of data. And these rock-bottom prices are easy to understand, and all-inclusive – no separate charges for each eDiscovery step.

Let’s take eDiscovery software GoldFynch as an example.

GoldFynch is a next-generation eDiscovery application that prioritizes things that matter to small law firms.

  • Pay just $10 per month for a basic 1 GB case. That’s $25 less–every month–than the nearest comparable software. And hundreds of dollars less than many others. Instead of using per-GB pricing, it uses fixed-volume pricing with a per-GB rate for comparison. (See how simple the pricing scheme is, on the GoldFynch website.)
  • It’s a flat, prorated rate. So it’s simple to budget for it.
  • Pricing is all-inclusive: So, you don’t need to pay to ‘unlock’ premium features. You’ll have the full power of GoldFynch even with a starter case.
  • Got a small case that might become a large one later? GoldFynch uses cloud eDiscovery to scale from small to large. So, choose from a range of case sizes (1 GB to 100 GB, and more) and don’t waste money on space you don’t need.
  • It takes just minutes to get going. Since it runs in the Cloud, you use it through your web browser (Google Chrome recommended). No installation. No sales calls or emails. Plus, you get a free, fully-functional trial case (0.5 GB of data and processing cap of 1 GB), without adding a credit card.
  • You get the best technical support: It’s designed, developed and run by the same team. So, the technical support isn’t outsourced. Which means prompt and reliable service.

Want to find out more?

For more about eDiscovery for small law firms, check out these articles.