A lot of magazine Web sites aren't that good. Here's the problem: Magazines invest a lot of money to create compelling content for their publications. There's usually a lot of pressure to try to further maximize that investment online. The result is a site designed around archival content with a few online exclusives thrown in to keep it fresh. Also, magazine editors love paper. They have a tough time working with a medium they can't touch and feel. Consequently, they don't put as much effort into their online offerings as they do their print.
I am one of those editors, though I recently had a change of heart. It occurred after a readership survey we did a few months ago, where we found an overwhelming majority of in-house counsel feel there are few, if any, sites out there that cater to their needs. As a result, readers often must wade through general legal and business sites to find what they want.
On Nov. 15 we are going to make your lives a little easier with the release of our new site. This site not only leverages the magazine's content but also provides you with the tools and resources necessary to become more efficient business managers and legal advisers.
Among the improvements you will see is a much more intuitive navigational system, which will allow you to find specific resources and information more quickly. The site also will contain both exclusive online content and magazine content as well as podcasts, Webinars and a white paper database. That database will be a one-stop shop for you to download briefing papers from the country's leading law firms and outside experts.
The other resource we've added is an in-house counsel job board. Any legal department can post to this board for free. And we have expanded the community side of the site by offering four new message boards that will allow you to share best practices and advice.
In addition, we added a law firm ranking feature. This feature will allow in-house lawyers to rank the firms they use based on 10 different factors, including "value of service," "responsiveness" and "billing accuracy"--all the things in-house counsel care about when retaining a firm. We will publish the full results of this ranking in our October 2008 issue.
Our ultimate goal with insidecounsel.com is to create a vibrant online community for in-house lawyers. It is a work in progress, so please send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know what additional resources or features you would like to see.