Peer to Peer Magazine

June 2010

The quarterly publication of the International Legal Technology Association

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other new generation to enter the workforce, they will also be the most high-performing workforce in history for those who know how to manage them properly. A session titled “The Evolution of Office” offered planning considerations and challenges related to the increasing ties between MS Office, Exchange and SharePoint, as well as the contemplation of Google Apps as a legal DMS and collaborative platform. “Best of Breed” vs. suite applications were debated. In a session titled “The Desktop as Dinosaur? The Future of the Traditional Desktop,” the panelists discussed the merits of their strategies. One firm made the decision to move to a virtualized desktop, providing consistent delivery of all applications from any office or at home. Another firm chose Citrix thin client as their solution, easing the constraints for opening up new offices. Another firm discussed the reasons they chose to move to Google Apps to replace Exchange, Microsoft Office and their document management system, with reliability, disaster recovery and accessibility from anywhere as key drivers for their decision. In a session titled “Transforming our ‘B’usiness — BPM, BPA, and BI,” panelists discussed their successful implementation of transformative technologies for automating the business of law. The Legal IT Innovation Group presented their findings on the usage of case, matter and workflow systems used by U.K. law firms. A presentation on Lord Justice Jackson’s Final Report endorsing a proposed new E-Disclosure Practice Direction and ESI Questionnaire emphasized the use of technology to reduce ESI volumes to manageable quantities, and urged more education and training in e-disclosure for both lawyers and judges. An engaging panel discussion titled “21st Century Collaboration: It’s Not All About Travel (or Even E-Mail) Anymore” examined the benefits of systems like Office Communication Server, desktop videoconferencing and LiveMeeting to enhance collaboration both internally and with external suppliers, vendors and clients. An example was given of a large non-legal professional services firm that uses Facebook for its internal firm directory with great success. One panelist described the analysis his firm had done on the staggering cost of losing a lawyer, and the ways technology can help attract, retain and tie individual lawyers more tightly to case teams and clients in order to have greater lawyer retention. Our final session recapped the highlights of the day’s sessions and a brief discussion of ILTA and our annual conference in August. It is noteworthy that many of the sessions carried “. . . technology is an absolute game-changer as we move forward.” forward the notion David Morley talked about in his opening session, namely that technology is an absolute game-changer as we move forward. Combined with a new generation of employees (and clients) that embrace the use of social media and other collaborative technologies, the landscape ahead will indeed be a quantum leap forward from where we sit today. For technology professionals, it was tremendously exciting to contemplate the prospect that these new technology options, properly leveraged, will continue to dramatically transform the legal industry in the future. “2020 Foresight” indeed! I came away from the event (as I do from any ILTA event) energized and recommitted to the mission of ILTA. We sometimes jokingly debate whether ILTA’s core value to each of us individually is the fine educational content provided or the wonderful opportunity to network with our growing number of peers. In true ILTA fashion, this event did not force us to choose between them, hitting a home run on both counts. And that’s INSIGHT we can bank on! ILTA Scott Christensen is the Director of Information Services at Wildman, Harrold, Allen and Dixon LLP. He has served for the past four years on ILTA’s Board of Directors, and presently serves in the capacity of President of the association. Scott enjoys teaching occasional college courses in the areas of computer science and business management and has been a speaker at conferences including ILTA, ALA, and ARMA. Outside of work, he has served on boards of directors of other non-profit organizations with oversight over finance, personnel and governance matters. He can be reached at THE CRITICS AGREE Read reviews by attendees online at Peer to Peer the quarterly magazine of ILTA 99

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