The 21st Century Document Management Approach for Today’s Email and Document Deluge

How MetaJure applies the latest in search technologies to solve the problems created by DMS systems. 

Our last post in January reported how many hours attorneys can waste trying to use document management systems (DMS).  So, how is MetaJure different?

We know that not everyone shares our enthusiasm for the workings of technology, so if all you want to know is why MetaJure is different, here’s the short answer:

  • MetaJure doesn’t require any work, and you can leave your documents (including emails) where they are now.
  • Using MetaJure is as easy as Google.
  • MetaJure gives you access to 100% of the documents in your organization, not just those you’ve put into some system.

But if you’re even a little interested in how MetaJure delivers these benefits, we encourage you to read on.  What follows is a fairly non-technical description of what MetaJure is and how it works.

How a Conventional DMS Works

First, if you don’t already have one, a conventional DMS requires three steps: (1) you need to devise a categorization scheme for all your documents (called a global taxonomy); (2) you then need to make everyone put all their documents into the DMS by uploading or resaving them to the system; and (3) users need to fill out a profile for each document that tells the system more about your document (e.g., it’s a contract or memo, with this client number etc.).

MetaJure stands conventional document management on its head by doing each one of these things differently.

1.  MetaJure automates document uploading

Instead of making users upload all their documents—and by “documents,” we mean email, too – into the system, MetaJure does this automatically.  Without your having to do anything.  That’s why we say MetaJure lets you leave your documents where they are now, because the system finds 100% of the documents in your organization—whether they’re on servers or file shares, in another DMS, or just on your PC or mobile device.

MetaJure even finds and stores items like documents attached to emails, something nobody has time to resave into a conventional DMS.  And, the technology automatically processes all image-based documents (think PDFs, jpegs, and TIFFs) via optical character recognition (OCR) technology, making that information fully accessible.

MetaJure’s software works automatically by continuously crawling, preserving and indexing your documents.  And, because MetaJure’s powerful technology works in the background, it doesn’t affect performance of your computers or systems.

2.  Smart document analysis and indexing doesn’t require you to add information

Instead of relying on manual tagging and profiling of documents by users, MetaJure uses sophisticated, state-of-the-art computer analytics to classify and index them.  MetaJure analyzes not only the words of the document, but also the context (which includes everything from which folder the document is in on your PC or network folder, to the properties of the document, to the author, client matter number and more).

What this means is that the MetaJure technology knows a great deal about each of your documents without requiring you to manually add information in each case or save the information to specific locale or under a specific name or number.  And if your firm already has a formal process for how documents should be named and filed, you can just keep following that system without having to learn anything new.  Only now you can be sure you can find ALL the documents you have permission to see, including emails.

3.  Retrieval is intuitive, fast and powerful

Finally, instead of finding documents based on the profiles and tags users have manually assigned them, MetaJure uses smart, algorithmic search-based retrieval to find what you’re looking for—and return the most important and relevant information you’re seeking right at the top of your screen. Whereas conventional DMS systems require lawyers and staff to be trained how to use a new application, MetaJure leverages the retrieval method that everyone already knows from conducting web searches on Google.  On top of that user-friendly interface, MetaJure adds powerful customized filter options that enable users to zero in on the documents you need.

Let’s say, for example, you wish to identify all documents related to a particular client litigation matter, including all email correspondence between your law firm and the client.  Conventional systems require that you find and input the file number or folder name under which you filed all matter-related documents.  You also need to trust that all of your colleagues have indeed saved their information into the right folder or under the correct file number. With MetaJure, you can simply type key words associated with the matter into a search box and be confident that the system returns all the relevant information you are looking for.  You can still find this information even if your colleagues use variations of names in your documents or if you don’t have the exact name of the litigation matter, client name and/or number.

The added benefit of understanding context

What’s more because MetaJure will help you see all content surrounding your search, it can help you understand the context surrounding a document.  For example, let’s say you are reviewing a contract that was negotiated between you and another attorney.  A search query with MetaJure will identify emails that may be associated to the document, revealing the rationale and arguments that led to specific language in the contract.

The Future

Imagine when there will be 100 times as many documents in your firm as there are now, and ask yourself if it would be possible to manually tag and organize them all.  In order to keep up, our firms need to use the technology of the future, not the past, to stay ahead of this document deluge.  The best news is the technology of the future is available today with MetaJure.  And it’s better, faster, and cheaper than any of the manual systems on the market.

What’s not to like about that?