By Daren Chidwick, Technical Consultant, Ascertus Limited
I’ve been a longstanding user of FileSite, a solution that provides the iManage content management add-in within Microsoft Outlook. However, since moving to iManage Work 10, the latest version of the solution, I’ve actually stopped using FileSite. It is a personal preference of course.
Nevertheless, I believe lawyers too will love iManage Work 10. Here’s why:
- Improved Outlook performance and usability – Work 10 offers a much lighter weight add-in to Microsoft Outlook, other MS Office applications and Adobe Acrobat (Gmail is now also supported). This means that most of the tools that lawyers use on a day-to-day basis are seamlessly integrated and Outlook will typically load faster!
Access to data on the move – without compromising user experience – The solution offers a new, modern web user interface, which means that lawyers can access data from any device, anywhere, anytime. Most crucially using the solution requires minimal training; and the experience of using Work 10 is the same regardless of whether the device is a smartphone, tablet, laptop or desktop. Not many solutions today offer this kind of device agnostic, consistent user experience.
Enhanced ‘suggested filing’ a time saver – The analytics in Work 10 have been improved to provide even more intelligent and targeted suggested filing locations for emails, based on usage history. Lawyers can save files directly from Outlook into Work 10 in multiple locations with a single click; and previously filed emails are clearly marked, so fee-earners won’t waste time filing what is already saved in the document management system. Additionally, emails can also be viewed by conversation thread in Work 10, which is useful.
Managing attachments is simplified – Due to the introduction of intelligent filters, with a single click, lawyers can immediately filter a folder, to display only the emails that have attachments. Given the volume of documents that lawyers send and receive on a daily basis, this is a great time saving feature. Version control on incoming emails with attachments has been significantly enhanced too.
Co-authoring and collaboration – The collaboration capability is significantly boosted in Work 10. Two or more people can simultaneously work on a document, safe in the knowledge that one of those individuals has complete control over the versioning process. It’s worth noting that this feature presently requires Microsoft OneDrive, either in the cloud or on-premises.
‘Soft’ deletion, recovery and peace of mind – Typically, lawyers are extremely reluctant to delete documents, at the risk losing key case information. Work 10 offers ‘soft’ deletion of documents – this means that even though a document may have been deleted, either in error or otherwise, should the lawyer require that file in the future, the solution administrator will be able to recover it at a later date.
Seamless on and offline working – The solution enables individuals to seamlessly switch between offline and online working. All the documents that lawyers work on are automatically cached to the local profile on their device. Say for whatever reason, the firm’s network goes down for a period of time, lawyers can continue to work on their PC. When the network is back up again, Work 10 will detect that the individuals are back online, and give the lawyers an action to sync the changes and/or create a new version of the documents they were working on at the time. This is excellent for business continuity.
Technology adoption for me is all about making life easier, enabling me to improve my efficiency and productivity so that I can focus on the more critical aspects of my work. Adoption of iManage Work 10 is a big step in this direction. The feedback that we have received from lawyers who have moved to Work 10 is similar too.