A surveywas just published by LexisNexis about information overload in the workplace, and specifically among legal professionals. Below are the first three survey results which were fascinating, along with some thoughts I had about each one.
– Sixty-two percent of professionals report that they spend a lot of time sifting through irrelevant information to find what they need; 68 percent wish they could spend less time organizing information and more time using the information that comes their way;
I’m surprised the percentage is this low. The other thirty plus percent must be senior levels who, in line with a 1950s style of management, have all information already consolidated for them.
Our experience in preparing for trial is not only having command of the evidence frustrating for the trial team, it’s the single obstacle to preparing an effective trial strategy. Most trial teams simply don’t have command of their evidence in real way. The amount of energy and effort we’ve see wasted in determining if a document was produced, what Bates numbers it was produced with, and which depositions it was marked in is remarkable and counter-productive — in the end, it doesn’t further the trial strategy, either tactically or legally, at all.
— Workers admit that not being able to lay their hands on the right information at the right time impedes their ability to work efficiently; 85% agree that not being able to access the right information at the right time is a huge time-waster;
What a shock! Not being able to access the evidence effectively is a time waster? This is going in our sales presentation as exhibit one. This is our Copacabana rule. If you can find the lyrics to Copacabana easier than you can find evidence, you’ve got a big problem. Google “Copacabana lyrics”. Or click this link. Uh, oh, was that easier and faster than finding a piece of key deposition testimony? That’s a problem.
There is a real problem we see of trial teams being under the illusion of control. Having paper exhibits in a binder with highlighting is not real control. Lawyers who believe in this “tried and true” method haven’t “tried” it with a million pages to access. Or more to the point — a million emails to access.
— More than 40 percent of the survey participants indicate an inability to handle future increases in information flow;
Because most people in the legal industry know what no one is saying. The emperor has no clothes. Very simply legal technology is not working right now. The technology most lawyers and law firms are still investing in was developed twenty years ago. We see that most legal technology isn’t even used by lawyers (outside of Blackberries and cellphones). Evidence management is outdated. The conclusion is correct, the current infrastructure is unable to handle an increase in information flow.
This is our mission. To free lawyers of this overload.
Our customers find their information quickly. The most experienced lawyers we work with insist on one thing — immediate access to everything instantly. Period. They don’t waste time managing information, and have even less patience for hearing why it can’t happen. And they know that however the technology changes, we’ll be ahead of them on figuring out a solution.
Our customers don’t worry about this stuff. They worry about how to win their case.