We made it
to the new millennium without the sky falling
or the legal system collapsing. Firm administrators, in particular, are relieved that
their planning paid off. So what are California law firms technology plans now that
they have vanquished the Y2K bug?
The following is what 11
firms from throughout the state are thinking about:
priority is to improve productivity, especially for attorneys. For Wilke, Fleury, Hoffelt,
Gould & Birney in Sacramento, this means putting time entry and legal calendaring on
administrator Larry Hartmann, the 27-attorney firm wants to reduce duplication of
effort. Giving attorneys the power to enter and retrieve data on their own will free
up secretarial and accounting time. The ultimate goal: Serve Wilke Fleurys medical
malpractice, commercial litigation and health care clients as efficiently as possible.
Lyon, a six-office, 130-lawyer intellectual property firm headquartered in Los Angeles,
will focus on its prosecution department, litigation support and records management. Early
last year, Paul Halpern, director of IT (information technology), started looking for
off-the-shelf software that the firm could customize to meet its needs.
the challenge is that in addition to imaging, we need a pretty strong workflow
product tied in that any department can use. Lyon
& Lyon found imaging software quite readily, but finding the right workflow product
will require a lot more work. User departments are actively working with Halpern to
successfully complete this second step.
administrator at 12-attorney Moss & Enochian in Redding, changed the firms
network operating system from Unix to Windows NT last year. The major reason: To run a
broader range of application software. White notes that with the latest application
programs, we will be able to deliver services more efficiently to the
firms insurance defense, municipal law, probate and estate planning clients.
are considering speech recognition software. Among them is five-attorney Swarner &
Fitzgerald in Riverside, which has a probate, estate planning, family law and corporate
Joannie Campbell asserts that clients want value for their dollar and speed.
Accordingly, Swarner & Fitzgerald also is looking for document assembly software to
better use existing work product. Not only will speech recognition and document assem-