Blogs

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Please enjoy this blog written by Melanie Segraves, Womble Bond Dickinson (US) LLP . Chances are, this won’t be the first blog about collaborating with clients that you’ve read. The legal industry is known for its buzzwords (ahem, innovation) and right now collaboration is having a moment. How important is collaboration in a legal setting? When Law360 interviewed the leadership of several global law firms last year, leaders said that a “collaborative spirit” was one of the four most important traits they look for in a partner. You may agree that collaboration is important and still find it a challenge to pinpoint your role in encouraging attorneys and ...
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KM for Newbies

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We hope you enjoy this blog co-authored by Nikki Shaver, Global Director of Knowledge Management, Paul Hastings, LLP and Adam Dedynski, KM-Project Manager, Reed Smith, LLP. This post is the first in a series ILTA will run over the course of the year, entitled “Foundations of Knowledge Management”. Upcoming posts will discuss the pillars of KM, evolving roles in KM, and how to measure the value of KM. First, though, we start at the beginning, for those new to the field. What is Knowledge Management (“KM”)? Defining KM has always been challenging, and it’s only become more so as the legal industry has evolved. [1] Generally, however, most traditional ...
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Please enjoy this blog co-authored by Caitlin Peters, Senior Manager of Business Operations, Ropes & Gray and Stephanie Godley, Sr. Manager of Knowledge Management & Library Services, Ropes & Gray. Once you have identified a pressing need for a technology solution to a knowledge management, marketing, or practice support issue, often the question arises – should we buy or should we build? The first step is to outline your core requirements. Once these are identified, take time to research third-party solutions. Then it is time to go through the exercise of considering whether to build your own custom solution. Even if there is a product out ...
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Merry new year!  Please enjoy this fourth annual catalog of   International Legal Technology Association   (ILTA) programming of interest to Knowledge Management (KM) professionals.  Because we all get busy, I assume that you might have might have missed some of ILTA’s 2019 peer-powered programming.  Plus, let’s be honest, it can be difficult to know what is out there when the content is spread among podcast and blog platforms, magazines, conferences and recordings.  In this post, I gather all those links together and organize them by topic. Each year, I make judgment calls on what is relevant to KM professionals.  KM is a varied and evolving discipline ...
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Among the Knowledge Management (KM) community, one question we commonly hear is this: “How can I use artificial intelligence (AI) to populate KM repositories?”  I have good news and less good news.  There  are  pockets of success out there, but you need to be realistic about what AI excels at today. The Problem KM can involve significant manual effort that entails subject matter expert involvement.  Developing forms banks, practice-specific content, and matter and experience databases requires someone familiar with the area of law to parse through documents and matter information to identify standard practices and relevant data points.  ...
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Content Integration: The Key to Unlocking Data from Your CRM Law firms around the world rely on CRM solutions to keep an accurate account of their clients’ experience interacting with the firm.  This includes contact information,  activities, and potential for growth. These firms also rely on data from various other sources to aggregate a holistic view of these client contacts. Recently Scott Winter, the LexisNexis® InterAction® Director of Product Management sat down with Snehit Cherian, the LexisNexis Vice President of Technology, to discuss how technology can help bridge the gap between these pockets of critical data to empower CRM users with a single ...
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By Sharon Ford, Technology Education Specialist, Perkins Coie. There are many interesting changes in the Knowledge Management (KM) area including AI and machine learning, Chat Bots, automation and more.  Many of these initiatives involve technology changes, but they also result in process changes including how people work, and they may evoke emotions including concerns about job security.  Regardless of the type of change, one thing you need to keep in mind is organizations don’t change; people do. If individuals need to change, then there needs to be a focus on people when initiatives are implemented and that is where change management comes in. Whether ...
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It can be quite challenging to define KM on a global scale, especially in terms of innovation.  There is an overarching understanding of the foundational aspects of KM that apply to each locality; efficiency and excellence, increased quality, client service, profitability, attorney job satisfaction, and risk management.  All brought together by content, collaboration, and culture.  The tenets of KM - precedents, forms, guides, playbooks, if perfected, can serve as the bridges to innovation.  Yet, firms are approaching KM and innovation in different ways, where some have dedicated innovation teams and others rely on KM to drive. Universally, innovation should ...
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I hope you find this follow-up blog to be very useful from the webinar that took place on April 10th entitled " Project Life Cycle: Measure Twice, Cut Once ." In project management, there are 5 phases to a project life cycle: Initiating; planning; executing; Monitoring/Controlling; and Closing.  The adage “measure twice, cut once,” best describes the first three phases of a project life cycle.  I nitiate and plan (measuring twice) so you can execute (cut once). How much you do in phase one and two depends on the objectives of the project.  Just doing project management tasks to check boxes doesn’t add value. Do enough project management ...
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Please enjoy this helpful takeaway created by the panelists after the March 26th virtual roundtable entitled Matter Profiling Part 2: Moving Forward. Takeaway - Matter Profiling Part 2: Moving Forward (3/26/2019) Moderator : Carrie Remhof Panelists : Kate Cain, Keli Whitnell, Heather Rivera, Marybeth Corbett Matter Profiling Part 1 Recap: Set initial goals to keep focused and measure your success Capture anecdotal examples along the way to communicate the value Partner with IT early on to understand where data lives, who owns it now and who maintains it going forward Start by setting up your profiles to answer the current questions ...
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Please enjoy this very helpful takeaway document composed by the panelists including Andrew Medeiros, Keith Maziareka, Ryan McLead, Ivana  Gotzeva and Heather Ritchie following the March 27th virtual roundtable discussion entitled The Role of KM in AFAs and Value-Based Billing.   The Role of KM in AFAs and Value-Based Billing ILTA Roundtable - March 27, 2019 Panelists Heather Ritchie , Chief Knowledge and Business Development Officer at Hicks Morley Hamilton Stewart Storie LLP Keith Maziarek , Director of Pricing and Legal Project Management at Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP Andrew Medeiros , Practice Innovation Attorney at Katten Muchin ...
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When people think of the marketing department in a law firm, they often think of events and client gifts. But in reality, it’s a team of people who often have MBAs, master’s degrees in communications, and similar advanced degrees working to move the firm’s strategic plans forward—and they’re often an untapped resource for the knowledge management (KM) and library services teams. Gone are the days that the marketing department planned your parties and ordered conference swag. These functions still happen, but they’re driven by data and measured against targets. Now marketing staff also coach the firm’s lawyers on how to win and develop business in a systematic ...
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In many law firms, the Marketing and Business Development teams (MBD) are experiencing growing demand for their services. While that speaks to the visibility and value placed upon these professionals, it can result in long hours and additional stress on the department. As a way to alleviate some of the time and resource pressures, MBD teams have been turning increasingly to, and partnering with, Library and Knowledge Management (KM) teams for research, data and other support. After consulting some colleagues from the U.S. and Canada, we have identified a number of ways that firms might maximize the value of this cross-team collaboration. Leveraging Library ...
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Once is chance , twice is a coincidence, and the third time is a pattern.  If that is true, then this 3rd annual KM Round-Up post marks a pattern, now a year-end ritual to complement your holiday madness.  You can read 2016’s “chance”   here and 2017’s “coincidence”   there .  But the gist of it is that we assume your professional and/or personal life got in the way and you missed some of ILTA’s excellent programming related to knowledge management.  Based on the amount of traffic the round-up posts get, you’re not alone.  Below is a list, loosely organized into categories, of KM-related programming.  Because KM professionals have varied interests, I tend ...
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ILTACON 2018 Recap

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The KM quarterly virtual roundtable held on September 12 provided   ILTACON 2018   attendees a forum to share their personal recap of the conference.  The engaging discussion was led by Gwyn McAlpine, Director of Knowledge Management Services, and Amy Monaghan, Practice Innovations Manager, of Perkins Coie. If you missed the roundtable,   listen to the recorded discussion . Highlighted Sessions ILTACON attendees shared their favorite sessions and key takeaways. We thought it would be helpful to provide the links to the sessions from the KM learning pathway and those discussed during the virtual roundtable. Monday Sessions Keynote:   KILL THE ...
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What is my legal exposure in this case? How much should I settle for? What’s market for this contractual provision? These are examples of key questions clients ask, and the answer from their lawyer is usually subjective in nature. To paraphrase   Ed Walters , CEO of Fastcase, the industry is far too reliant on “hunches” and too light on data and statistical responses. As firms seek to modernize and respond to evolving client expectations, the data use environment is changing. That should not be surprising, as the use of data in virtually every other industry is on the rise. In response to the increasing activity and interest in the crossroads of law, ...
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ILTACON 2018   kicks off in Washington, DC, in less than one week.  We reviewed the   Conference Session Grid   and curated a list of sessions that may be of particular interest to KMers.  Note that in addition to the sessions we highlighted, there are many others on Artificial Intelligence, Data Analytics, Innovation, Leadership, Training and more, so be sure to review the full agenda, including the Business Partner Education sessions.  We encourage you to share which sessions you plan to attend in the comment section below. Sunday, August 19 Arriving on Sunday? Get a head start at ILTACON by joining other KMers at the   Knowledge Managers Collaboration ...
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More than ten years have passed since enterprise search hit large law firm KM radars in a big way.   Much has changed since then – the technology, the providers, and perhaps most critically, law firm content repositories.  These changes appear to be pushing enterprise search back onto law firms’ to-do lists.  The topic is appearing more frequently in ILTA programming, as illustrated by the recent, and highly recommended, ILTA webinar entitled   Enterprise Search Tool Stories , in which three law firms walk through the processes and choices that went into enterprise search upgrades.  The   2018 KM Priorities   survey issued annually by   Ron Friedmann   ...
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I recently stumbled upon a web post,   50 Popular Business Books Summarized in One Sentence Each ,   and appreciated authors Drake Baer and Mike Nudelman’s ability to synthesize entire books so succinctly.  For example, about Robert Cialdini’s   Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion : “[t]here are six universal principals that determine if people will change behavior – reciprocity, commitment, social proof, liking, authority, and scarcity.”  Okay, so one sentence is sometimes more like a teaser, but the list helped me decide which books to explore in greater depth.  It also made me realize how much I value recommendations from – and summaries by – peers.   ...
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I first encountered legal knowledge management four years ago. I was fresh from the world of academia where I’d been a technology librarian for years, had zero legal experience, and had just been hired to lead my firm’s new knowledge management initiative. There was only one small problem. I had no idea where to start. Developing a KM program from scratch can seem a little daunting. Here are some suggestions on how to develop a successful program at your firm. Define what KM would mean at your firm. KM is as varied as flavors of ice cream at the supermarket. The definition of KM differs depending on who you’re talking to and when you talk to ...
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