How to Ensure Value When Outsourcing Your Document Review project

by | Jan 24, 2019 | Document Review

Document discovery is the largest component of legal spend in a litigation. The enormous volume of data created by companies can make the collection, processing, review and production of discovery documents an overwhelmingly expensive exercise. To address these concerns, companies and law firms are recognizing the value of working with managed document review service providers. Outsourcing is an alternative and typically more cost-effective option to traditional document review. Although reducing costs is a key driver to outsource, the benefits can add much more value than simple cost savings.

LDM Global’s Marketing Manager Allison Miriani sat down with Legal Services Director Rashmi Kishore, a lawyer with more than two decades of experience, who oversees the document review team in India.

Q. What are the other benefits of outsourcing document review services?

Rashmi Kishore

A: Some other benefits may include round-the-clock coverage, better efficiencies and turnaround time, a dedicated, skilled and trained workforce, and the ability to quickly scale up or trim operations.

Because outsourcing document review services is becoming more acceptable by clients, companies and law firms are more frequently realizing these advantages.

Q. How do you choose your managed document review partner? What type of things should you look for?

A: There are several qualifications you will want to ask a potential partner about and feel comfortable in the responses. These include:

  • Experience of the review partner in understanding and managing the nuances of document review
  • Accuracy and efficiency of the deliverables
  • Ability to deliver in a timely, dependable, and consistent manner
  • Ability to transfer case knowledge back to the supervising counsel
  • Ability to forecast the budget transparently
  • Ability to establish policies to deal with any processes, conflicts of interest and information security

Q. How does the law firm provide training to the document review team in India?

A: This is not as complex as it sounds. A few steps will have your team up and running efficiently on the document review:

  • Prepare a review manual just as you would do for your own team.This manual should not remain static; it should evolve with the project.
  • Hold a conference/video call to train and discuss the manual with the offshore team.
  • Set up a process for regular followup and communication.
  • Once the review starts, perform sample quality assurance and continue providing regular and timely feedback to the offshore team.

Q. How closely does outside counsel need to work with the document review partner? Do they just hand over the review?

A: Document review is conducted under the direction and supervision of outside counsel and requires firm commitment from outside counsel. The document review service provider and outside counsel collaborate to create a stream of continuous knowledge transfer between them.

However, a tenured document review service provider should have processes in place to make such supervision a seamless exercise for the outside counsel.

Q. How does the document review service provider communicate with the law firm?

A: An experienced document review service provider can set up processes to communicate with all the stakeholders on a daily, weekly and/or monthly basis. Regular and effective communication is very important for the seamless transfer of knowledge, making case strategy, ongoing expenditure decisions and building a successful partnership. A tenured service provider knows what to communicate, whom to communicate with, and how to communicate.

Q. How does the law firm ensure a service provider is reviewing documents at the same quality (or better) than it could do in house?

A: Defining standard procedures and quality control process is very important for a successful and effective document review outsourcing service. At the minimum, the document review service provider should be able to document its quality control, tracking and reporting process and provide to outside counsel summary reports detailing productivity, quality statistics, efficiency and error rates, project status, etc. These are crucial factors that assist the counsel in making case strategy and decisions on ongoing spend.

Q. What kinds of security measures are in place to ensure the safety of documents to be reviewed?

A: The majority of document review services are performed on databases hosted by third-party vendors who use many security measures such as multiple levels of passwords, validation of user names, limited access to data according to user rights group and terminating database accounts upon project completion. There are many more additional security measures deployed by the document review service provider at an infrastructure level, an IT level and a human level, including background checks, confidentiality agreements, securing employee work stations including restricting access to data and USB drives; keycard access to work sites and more.

To read more about LDM Global’s document review service, click here.

About Rashmi Kishore:

Legal Services Director Rashmi Kishore, a lawyer with more than two decades of experience, oversees the document review team in India. She has worked on over 200 projects with more than 15 million  documents, spanning industries, languages and locations.