Survey Indicates that Fortune 1000 Companies Seek to Take Control of Discovery Processes
SEATTLE– LAWFUEL – Legal News, Legal Jobs Network –Attenex® Corp., a leading provider of e-discovery software for corporations and their law firms, and Michael A. Clark, industry analyst and principal of EDDix LLC, today announced survey results on the critical e-discovery issues facing Fortune 1000 corporations in the coming year. The study provides new insight on the priorities and challenges ahead for organizations as they move beyond Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) compliance and begin to implement repeatable e-discovery processes.
“The results of this study illuminate a nascent trend we are tracking closely — law departments are assuming a much higher profile role when it comes to litigation risk management and response,” said Michael Clark, the report author and EDDix analyst. “As talented as outside counsel may be, they arrive after the fact and are often limited in scope to a single case. There are institutional issues — policy, process and infrastructure — that give rise to risk and cost that can only be addressed from within.”
The survey solicited information from corporate counsel and litigation support professionals that oversee electronic discovery efforts for more than 50 Fortune 1000 companies. The survey results forecast an increased focus by corporations on taking more direct control of the overall process for discovery and review of electronically stored information (ESI) in 2007. A significant component of accomplishing this, according to legal professionals, is the improvement of existing processes for discovery. Nearly half of corporate legal teams surveyed acknowledged that steps are needed to improve, streamline and automate the discovery process in their company. In addition, nearly half of the respondents indicated that the processes and collaboration with their outside counsel and vendors needed to improve.
“The survey results and feedback from our Fortune 1000 clients indicate that in 2007 companies will extend existing legal and IT processes in order to address multiple use cases that involve the discovery and review of information. We are consistently hearing that large corporations want to use a repeatable process for response to legal and regulatory requests as well as internal investigations and early case assessments,” said Mike Kinnaman, vice president of marketing for Attenex. “Many Attenex customers are already well down this path and are reporting compelling benefits such as increased response efficiencies, improved case strategy, overall risk reduction, and dramatic cost savings.”
Recent developments such as amendments to the FRCP and an increased demand for electronic information from regulatory agencies have motivated corporations to take more direct control of the discovery process — including collecting, processing, analyzing, and producing the necessary electronically stored information (ESI) — during litigation, investigations and regulatory compliance. To accomplish this, the Attenex/EDDix survey results indicate that a majority of corporations are purchasing or using a hosted e-discovery solution through a legal service provider. For example, 54% of respondents already use document discovery and review technology for litigation purposes, and 72% of respondents said they use e-discovery already for internal investigations. Additionally, 60% are planning to purchase and deploy an e-discovery solution from companies such as Attenex within the next 18 months.
Even as many corporations transition control of e-discovery in-house, respondents indicated that they are relying more heavily on legal service providers and their law firms to assist in key portions of the discovery process, such as data processing and analysis. Additionally, when compared to outside counsel and legal service providers, legal teams rated themselves the lowest in their capability to “find, retrieve, organize and analyze documents.”
“Meaningful change begins with problem recognition and assessment, so in this regard the research results are encouraging,” said Michael Clark. “For example, less than one-third of law departments rated their early case assessment capabilities as ‘very effective and efficient,’ and only one-third thought their processes for implementing and managing litigation holds were effective. Clearly the GCs understand there is not only room, but need, for improvement, and they are actively seeking help in establishing best practices.”
Founded in 2001, the Attenex® Patterns® E-Discovery Software suite and the company’s network of Attenex Advantage Partners provides Fortune 1000 companies with an end-to-end e-discovery solution that reduces the cost, risk and complexity of managing litigation, investigation and regulatory response projects. “With the industry’s largest global network of expert legal solution providers, Attenex provides corporations with the people, technology and best practices needed to fit the unique requirements of each business,” said Kinnaman. “Our customers find that there is simply no other offering today that delivers as much flexibility and advantage for corporations.”
Additional information on e-discovery processes and best practices can be provided by contacting Attenex at 206-373-6565. The complete survey findings along with relevant commentary will be available from EDDix in January, 2007.
Founded in 2001 and headquartered in Seattle, Attenex Corporation provides software to help corporations, law firms, legal service providers and government agencies improve the efficiency of processing and reviewing electronic documents. Attenex software combines patented content analysis and visualization technology with a powerful processing engine to accelerate the identification of relevant information in its native format. For more information about the company and its products, call 206-373-6565 or visit www.attenex.com.
Attenex Advantage Partners represent a growing network of experienced legal industry service providers and consulting organizations that offer Attenex software to dramatically reduce the total cost of discovery for their clients. For more information, visit http://www.attenex.com/partners/.
EDDix, founded by Michael Clark, is a research firm that provides clients with integrated, real-time views of the electronic data discovery players, technology, products, services, regulation, law, and trends. For more information, please visit http://www.eddixllc.com.
Attenex®, Patterns®, and the Attenex logo are registered trademarks of Attenex Corporation. All other company, brand, and product names are the property and/or trademarks of their respective companies.