As we come to the conclusion of this three-part analysis of the evolution and importance of the knowledge worker in the dynamic new e-discovery space (read parts one and two), it is clear that e-discovery practitioners must develop an increasingly complex suite of skills to remain relevant. As we previously noted, corporations must build sophisticated teams both internally and externally that can leverage technology-enhanced review tools and act as special operations consultants to outside counsel throughout the e-discovery process. This new breed of knowledge worker does not fall from the sky; rather, workers should develop organically within the corporation and the e-discovery services ranks. Knowledge worker development does not have to be a budget buster. Companies can tap a wide array of low- to no-cost resources to begin this evolution within their e-discovery teams, and this segment will outline and define several of those options.
Corporations, law firms and e-discovery service providers all agree that the e-discovery space is rapidly shifting to one that is technology-centric, and that there is an increasing level of sophistication necessary to perform technology-enhanced reviews and manage the various tools to maximal efficiency. But, there is a misconception that a company must invest in expensive new talent or costly and questionably effective certification programs to capitalize on these new solutions. This is simply not the case.
The various providers of these technology-leveraged solutions want their clients to better understand their services and are happy to provide hands-on demonstrations, training and even tool-specific certification to internal resources or e-discovery teams at little or no cost to the company. These providers can educate your team remotely or in-person on how best to leverage their tools and often are fully prepared to act as expert witnesses before the bench if the protocol or efficacy of a tool is questioned.
Beyond pure certification and training on specific tools, nearly all of the large e-discovery solution providers offer webinars, white papers and case studies that discuss a wide array of aspects of the e-discovery space. Many times senior members of high-ranked vendors are former practitioners and understand the unique challenges that your team may face. Solution providers want their potential customers to be savvy and comfortable with the emerging tools in the market, and if your team pulls resources from multiple providers there is a wealth of readily available information.
There is also a wide array of vendor-specific and vendor-agnostic e-discovery blogs that are frequently updated and focused on the evolving trends in the e-discovery space. Legal industry experts freely fill these blogs with often insightful and useful practical and theoretical analysis of the case law, market trends and technology driving the evolution of e-discovery 2.0. You may need to take vendor-specific blogs with a grain of salt regarding which tool makes the most sense to use, but when it comes to overall trends, case law and non-tool specific analysis they are a vast, free repository of tools and information that can elevate your current team’s competency at no cost to the firm.
The knowledge worker trend is one not likely to dissipate given the rapidly shifting trends in the e-discovery space. As inside counsel, you have a unique opportunity to invest the time necessary to help your case teams evolve into the type of resource that can capitalize on the new and emerging technologies reshaping e-discovery. Leveraging all the readily available resources currently in the market and instilling the process and work flow planning offered through Project Management Professional certification equips your teams to become the knowledge workers of the future.