Decluttering eDiscovery for the Busy Attorney
Takeaway: The right eDiscovery software can help simplify your life by decluttering your (1) Workspace, (2), Workflow, (3) Data, (4) Search results, (5) Schedule, and (6) Billing.
eDiscovery is often made more complicated than it needs to be. But the right software can change this.
Most attorneys feel overwhelmed when taking on eDiscovery because they worry it will complicate their lives. For example, they ask: Can we budget for it? Will it change our workflow? Will our data be safe? etc. Luckily, the right eDiscovery software can actually make your life simpler and easier! Here’s why.
1. It declutters your workspace by moving data into the Cloud.
Cloud eDiscovery is the perfect way of clearing up your workspace. Here, software giants like Amazon and Google lease storage space on their high-powered servers. And these interconnected servers form a global ‘Cloud.’ Once you move your data off your computer and into the Cloud, there’s a lot of hardware you won’t need anymore – for example, hard drives, servers, wires, cables, backup laptops, and more. This means that the right Cloud eDiscovery service can save you both money and space. There are other perks to using the Cloud, too. For example, you won’t have to hire an IT team to troubleshoot technical issues since your eDiscovery provider will handle that. Also, data recovery becomes much simpler since Cloud data is backed up on multiple servers. In contrast, if your data is only on your office computers and they go down, it’s going to cost a lot more to recover it. Learn more about Cloud eDiscovery.
2. It declutters your workflow by focusing on essential tools.
Many eDiscovery solutions aren’t ideal for small and midsize law firms like yours. They’re packed with features that you don’t need – and which make them more expensive. Take ‘predictive coding’, for example. This is where the software looks for patterns in how you review and label files and then automatically makes suggestions. It’s exciting, cutting-edge stuff. But unless you’re a large law firm with a sizable caseload, these are frills you’ll rarely use. And certainly not when you’re trying to grow your firm, find new clients, and keep costs down. More importantly, these frills can complicate your workflow by distracting you from eDiscovery basics. Basics like searching, tagging, redacting, and producing files. So, choose an eDiscovery application that emphasizes these basics, and it’ll help you work more effectively. (Learn about essential vs. non-essential eDiscovery features.)
3. It declutters your data by spotting duplicate files.
Say your client’s head of HR – Jennifer – emails a policy-change document to everyone in the organization. You’ll find the same document on her computer, the computers of 50 other employees, and attached to emails sitting in inboxes, servers, and backup drives. So, when you collect the data for eDiscovery, you’ll have 50+ copies of that same email to review. This is clearly a waste of time. But it gets worse. For example, if you mark one copy of the email as ‘privileged’ but miss some of the other copies, you’ll risk leaking sensitive information in the final production. And it’s not just wasted time. There’s wasted money, too. If that email has a 2 MB attachment, its 50+ copies will take up 100+ MBs of unnecessary storage space that you’ll be paying for. And that’s just for one instance of a duplicate file. This is where ‘duplicate detection’ comes in. eDiscovery applications with this feature will pull up all copies of that email for you to delete, move, or label. And this makes reviewing your case files so much quicker.
4. It declutters your eDiscovery search results using advanced searches.
We’re all familiar with a basic keyword search, where your software looks for a single keyword. So, for example, if you’re interested in all emails from a particular custodian, ‘John,’ you’d use his name as a keyword in a basic search. One level up from this is when your software looks for keyword combinations, using ‘operators’ (e.g., AND, OR, NOT) to connect these keywords. So, a search for ‘John AND Sally’ will find you emails with both those names in them. But with an ‘advanced’ search, you’ll be able to combine keywords and *metadata to give a highly specific command like, “Find all emails John Anderson sent Sally Nedry, which mention the Pfizer meeting. And which were sent before 2015.*” Think of how much extra clutter this sort of search will filter out! And less clutter means you waste less time.
5. It declutters your schedule by helping you outsource work.
Sometimes your schedule is too busy to make space for eDiscovery – however good the software. So, the best applications help by setting up a ‘managed’ review for you, where a team of outside attorneys reviews eDiscovery documents on your behalf. The more popular teams are highly qualified, experienced, and affordable. And they’ll take on the technicalities of building searches and reviewing files. This means that you, your paralegals, associates, and partners can then work on legal tasks with a higher rate of return. Learn more about managed reviews.
6. It declutters your monthly billing with a simple pricing plan.
eDiscovery providers usually offer one of two broad pricing strategies. The first option is to pay for storage space, where Cloud storage is divided into chunks (or ‘plans’) – e.g., 3 GB, 5 GB, 10 GB, etc. Prices for these plans are set in advance and you choose the one that’ll best hold your case. The other pricing option is to pay for uploads (a.k.a. ‘pay as you go’ pricing), where your bill is calculated based on how many GBs of data you upload. The problem is that most eDiscovery cases grow and shrink throughout the month, so when you’re paying for uploads, you’re never sure of what your bill will be. For example, you might upload 12 GB of data, cull 8 GB, and then get 6 GB more from your client. You’ve now uploaded 18 GB and the month isn’t over yet. Imagine how frustrating it is to have to track all this activity constantly! Instead, when you pay for storage, you can upload and download as much as you want. So, if you choose a 20 GB plan, you can upload those 12 GB, cull 8 GB, add 6 GB more and keep going indefinitely – all for the same price. Because the 20 GB of storage is yours to use as you please. (Learn more about eDiscovery pricing.)
Do you want a less cluttered life? Try GoldFynch.
GoldFynch is an easy-to-use eDiscovery service that’s perfect for small- and midsize law firms and companies.
- It costs just $25 a month for a 3 GB case: That’s significantly less than most comparable software. With GoldFynch, you know what you’re paying for exactly – its pricing is simple and readily available on the website.
- It’s easy to budget for. GoldFynch charges only for storage (processing is free). So, choose from a range of plans (3 GB to 150+ GB) and know up-front how much you’ll be paying. You can upload and cull as much data as you want, as long as you stay below your storage limit. And even if you do cross the limit, you can upgrade your plan with just a few clicks. Also, billing is prorated – so you’ll pay only for the time you spend on any given plan. With legacy software, pricing is much less predictable.
- It takes just minutes to get going. GoldFynch runs in the Cloud, so you use it through your web browser (Google Chrome recommended). No installation. No sales calls or emails. Plus, you get a free trial case (0.5 GB of data and a processing cap of 1 GB), without adding a credit card.
- It’s simple to use. Many eDiscovery applications take hours to master. GoldFynch takes minutes. It handles a lot of complex processing in the background, but what you see is minimal and intuitive. Just drag-and-drop your files into GoldFynch, and you’re good to go. Plus, you get prompt and reliable tech support.
- Access it from anywhere, and 24/7. All your files are backed up and secure in the Cloud.
Want to find out more about GoldFynch?
For related posts about eDiscovery, check out the following links.
- Why Your eDiscovery Software Should Offer Automatic Case-Upgrades
- The Smart Way to Free Up eDiscovery Storage Space
- Is It Worth Paying for eDiscovery Analytics?
- Small Case Vs Big Case eDiscovery: There’s Such a Difference!
- eDiscovery Pricing Comparison for Smaller, In-House Cases
- How to Use eDiscovery ‘Tag’ Macros For Lightning-Quick Work!