Monthly Archives: February 2017

Feb 28

How long will vendor elimination take?

By Michael Feit | Sole Provider

Often before beginning the vendor elimination process, the big question is, “How long will this take?"

There are two approaches to vendor elimination. The first is the “pull off the Band-Aid” approach, whereby management buys-in and then the decision is announced with no planning or re-resourcing of content. Let the chips fall where they may.

This approach may work well in certain circumstances, but it is not the approach we recommend.  The approach that Feit Consulting advises aims to make the transition to sole provider as seamless and painless as possible.

Our preferred approach requires strategic planning, stakeholder management, time and commitment.The complexity of this process is largely dependent upon the intricacies of each firm and the length will vary accordingly.  Business plan development, presentation and follow-up is estimated to take 4-5 months.  If the firm decides to move forward with the sole provider option, the next steps include conducting a Gap Analysis and developing replacements and work-arounds, taking 2- 4 months.

Today, eliminating Westlaw is a much more difficult task than that of eliminating Lexis.  In the process of a Westlaw elimination, gaining associate buy-in will likely consume the greatest amount of time, but minimizing associate push-back will ensure success. Therefore, the timeframe to eliminate Westlaw (6-12 months) is significantly longer than that of Lexis (1-4 months).

Lastly, allocating 3-6 months to transition processes and people from two vendors is beneficial. In sum, adequate planning and execution to eliminate Westlaw can take 15-27 months, and for Lexis elimination: 10-19 months.

Often before beginning the vendor elimination process, the big question is, “How long will this take?” There are two approaches to vendor elimination. The first is the “pull off the Band-Aid” approach, whereby Management buys in, and then the decision is announced with no planning or re-resourcing of content. Let the chips fall where they may.
Feb 28

Reintegrate, Reinvent, and Optimize your Role in the Modern Library

By Michael Feit | Events , Librarians , White Papers

For those who attended the ARK Conference on Best Practices & Management Strategies for Law Firm Library, Research & Information Services last week in New York, the message was loud and clear. It is no longer business as usual.

While law firms have always depended on library and information professionals to support the research needs of their lawyers, the paradigm is shifting. Success will depend on taking a more active role in your organization. ARK presenters provided viable strategies for librarians to transition into possible management roles by supporting the client intake process, assisting attorneys in managing outside counsel guidelines and a myriad of innovative ways to service the firm’s business needs.

Streamlined and efficient delivery of knowledge was another hot topic, as libraries opt for mobile strategies to push out curated and personalized knowledge to lawyers, regardless of where they reside in the world.

It’s an exciting time for legal information and knowledge management professionals, and Feit Consulting is thrilled to be joining you on this journey. In December 2017, Feit Consulting will offer another white paper in the Market Trends Series, entitled Beyond Virtualization: Transforming the Law Library.

What are the changing roles librarians play in the Modern Library? 

This white paper will help you evaluate your current library structure and align with your firm’s strategy, with discussions on leveraging technology to improve workflow, for promoting efficiency and cost savings.

Feb 27

What Reporting to C-Suite Means for the Librarian

By Michael Feit | Librarians , White Papers

The new way librarians report up can present challenges. In the past, librarians may have reported to a library partner or management committee. As firms streamline management and C-Suite positions evolve, librarians find themselves reporting up in ways that can present not only new challenges but real opportunities. Legal information professionals have the opportunity to showcase their knowledge skills and promote interdepartmental cooperation.

Whether one reports to the CMO, CIO, CFO or COO, it is important to understand their concerns and what keeps them up at night. Knowing the issues facing C-Suite and their strategy to make the firm successful will give you, the librarian, a better understanding of where you fit in and what talents you can bring to the table.

Moving beyond “but they don’t understand what we do” puts you in the role of innovator and change agent. Knowledge is power, and librarians should not underestimate their ability to influence.

CMO’S need to understand that librarians can fulfill the role of Competitive Intelligence professionals, identifying and supporting business development initiatives, as well as assisting with marketing efforts. CIOs can tap into librarian skills of Knowledge Management, helping IT to identify technology and systems to improve workflow. For those librarians reporting up to the CFO, showcasing business skills in contract negotiations and implementation of cost-effective research strategies will show your willingness to work toward growing the firm’s bottom line.

To modernize, firms must assess the best approaches to delivering information while considering cost and work product. Feit Consulting is offering unique opportunities to participate in the development of its Beyond Virtualization white paper. Firms who purchase early have the opportunity to be directly involved. There will also be survey opportunities.

We hope you will join us as we explore the possibilities. For more information about Beyond Virtualization, click here.

Feb 27

Of course usage matters!

By Michael Feit | Best Practices , Contract Negotiations , White Papers

Usage is the purest barometer of how valuable a tool is to an organization. How much you use any product or service is your best indicator of how valuable it is.

So maybe this is why legal information vendors no longer want to talk about usage. If it is clear that usage has declined, then discussing this would undermine any reasoning for an increase in your next contract.

When Lexis and Westlaw considered usage as a factor in pricing, many big-city and larger Am-Law firms had the highest usage. Therefore, these firms were unfortunately locked in at higher pricing than the rest of the market.

Today, while these vendors do not recognize usage as a relevant factor, this does not mean your firm should acquiesce.

If your firm is curious about metrics to use in contract negotiations and how your firm compares to the market, consider our next report, Optimizing Legal Information Pricing.

Feb 27

A Mission Statement to Challenge Existing Paradigms

By Michael Feit | Feit Consulting

Feit Consulting collaborates with clients on all facets of legal information management to develop solutions that improve work product and enhance profitability.

Our Mission Statement

Thought leaders committed to challenging existing paradigms, Feit Consulting partners with law firm administrators and legal information professionals to optimize the management and delivery of legal information resources by providing leading-edge, customized solutions.

To learn more about Feit Consulting, click here.