eDiscovery Professionals: Order-taking or Consulting? – Why Make the Shift?
August 01, 2012
If you work in a law firm and find yourself functioning as an “order-taker”, it’s fairly evident that moving into a consulting capacity is a good career move for you. It’s likely to lead to career advancement, a higher salary, and elevated status in the firm. It’s important to recognize, however, that making this shift also benefits the litigation teams with which you work. Most significantly, as a consultant, you can help litigators to avoid the land mines that too many of them have stepped on in recent years. This is a “win-win” for everybody. Here are a couple of key ways in which you can help:
Your clients don’t necessarily know all the options available to them regarding technology. As a consultant, you’ll be on top of this, and as a consultant, you’ll keep your clients current. What worked well on a case a year ago might not be the best approach today. As new technology emerges, you’ll keep the litigators in your firm abreast of what’s available and how and when new tools may be appropriate for the cases that they handle. You won’t be the one making decisions on technology use on a case, but you’ll be the one who makes sure that those who do have all the information they need to make the right decisions.
You can help your clients understand how current case law applies to the work they are doing. To practice large-scale litigation today, litigators – more than ever -- need to keep on top of current case law. They need to know what precedents are being set, what judges are demanding regarding handling electronic discovery, and – most significantly – how those requirements are relevant to the cases they are handling. As a consultant, you’ll be keeping on top of this and you can play a significant role in educating the litigators and keeping them current.
To practice large-scale litigation today, litigators need to keep on top of what’s happening in the world of electronic discovery. You won’t change that. As a consultant, however, you can alleviate their burden. You can be the “leg-work” person and the “educator”. You can be their source.
Stay tuned for the next post in this series… we’ll start talking about making the shift from order-taking to consulting and I’ll give you some tips for being an effective consultant. Please let us know your thoughts on this. Do you function as a consultant in your firm, or do you do more order-taking than you’d like? Have you successfully shifted from order-taking to consulting? If so, how did you make that happen? Do you have tips you can share? And please let us know if you’d like to know more about a particular topic.
Disclaimer: The views represented herein are exclusively the views of the author, and do not necessarily represent the views held by CloudNine Discovery. eDiscoveryDaily is made available by CloudNine Discovery solely for educational purposes to provide general information about general eDiscovery principles and not to provide specific legal advice applicable to any particular circumstance. eDiscoveryDaily should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a lawyer you have retained and who has agreed to represent you.