After covering Andrew Haslam’s annual eDisclosure Systems Buyers Guide on eDiscovery Today last week (which was published last week on Rob Robinson’s ComplexDiscovery site here), I published part 1 of a more in-depth look at the guide and some of the other benefits of it earlier this week here. Here’s the conclusion of my in-depth look at Andrew’s Buyers Guide.
When I said last time that the first 70+ pages is mostly dedicated to educational resources, that includes resources on the market, a procurement approach that can be used to select vendors and additional resources on eDisclosure/eDiscovery and legal tech in general. Here are additional resources Andrew discusses:
Market Survey: This chapter looks at the overall marketplace for eDisclosure buyers, starting with a quick review on the changing UK legal environment and how that might impact the choice and use of technology. That’s followed by historical market perspectives overall, and for litigation support products, ECA products and predictive coding products. The historical market perspectives are great if you want to understand how we got where we are today and who some of the legacy players are (as you will hear their names referenced from time to time).
That’s followed by an analysis of the different types of vendors in areas including consultancy firms, software specific organizations, solutions/bureau organizations, outsourcing organizations, external review teams and managed review facilities/teams. That’s followed by current hot topics, which include clustering/concept/sentiment analysis, email threading, automatic translation, audio/video files, technology assisted review (TAR), social media ESI, a need for a solution to support “small quantities of ESI “,” charging model considerations, redaction tools for “native” formats and email family groups with non-relevant children.
Andrew also goes in-depth into potential problems, such as email groups, re-unitization of images of paper documents (which is still needed at times when images are created or produced without regard to document boundaries), high level allocation of alias for names normalization, the pitfalls of improperly managed data collection by the client or the law firm’s IT department and issues of working in “native” formats.
That’s followed by a vendor list (grouped under the headings used in the previous section), and two valuable software lists – by supplier and by EDRM function. Andrew even includes a comprehensive list of Relativity plug-ins!
“It includes advice such as “Don’t keep asking for the “best of three” quotes” and “Ask for flexibility in pricing” as ways to deal with the pricing challenges that exist today.
Doug Austin quoting Andrew Haslam
Procurement Approach: This section provides an analysis of the types of pricing models suppliers might adopt, an overview of the procurement process, and then specific requirements for scanning, unitization and coding services, data collection, litigation support services and processing small volumes of ESI.
The first sub-section – Supplier’s Pricing / Client Tactics – provides valuable tips on gathering pricing info and negotiating pricing. It includes advice such as “Don’t keep asking for the “best of three” quotes” and “Ask for flexibility in pricing” as ways to deal with the pricing challenges that exist today. Andrew also reviews the general procurement stages, ranging from requirements scoping to demonstration with real data and establish call off contracts.
Additional Resources: This is Andrew’s last educational section before he gets into the Supplier and Software Details section (which comprises the bulk of the guide), where he provides a list of useful UK and US resources for eDisclosure/eDiscovery and legal tech.
Andrew’s eDisclosure Systems Buyers Guide is not just the most comprehensive resource for learning about the service and software providers in the market, it’s also a terrific resource to educate the buyer on eDisclosure/eDiscovery best practices and technology. Pages 14 through 83 are a “must read” to understand what you need to know to evaluate the comprehensive list of providers that follows. That’s what makes it a true “Buyers Guide”!
As I mentioned last time, you can check out his guide via ComplexD here. What I didn’t mention last time is that this will be the last version of the Guide in its current form (at least from Andrew). In the Forward, he stated: “After a decade of using my spare time in the first half of the year to pull together this document, I’m moving away from the keyboard to spend more time with my wife and grandchildren. Thank you to everyone who has contributed to the Guide over the years, it has been (mainly) fun.”
Hopefully, someone will emerge to take up the mantle from here and keep it going! Perhaps someone who is known for providing excellent educational and market resources and has been the host of the guide for the last two years? Hint, hint!