My law firm just went live with Worldox 6 weeks ago. We don't use Needles, we use Lawbase, but I am certain that won't make a great deal of difference. Our firm is right at 100 users in four locations and with 5 distinct practice groups.
The most important thing to do is a *LOT* of thinking and planning about how to lay things out. Depending on your firm and the types of matters they handle, as well as your staff's 'tech ability' you will probably run into a few conflicts as to how Worldox (or any Document Management system) should be setup.
We started with a group of 4 people IT (me), a paralegal, an attorney, and a member of management, we were responsible for demoing the software and recommending the correct package. Once that was done the same team went on to be the group that went through configuration and layout. Once that was complete we assembled a pilot group of about 12 people (all facets of the firm represented) and tested for 8 weeks. Those members of the pilot group became the 'first line hlep desk' for questions regarding the software when we went live.
The firm went live Big Bang style, that is it was rolled out in one day. Everyone was required to attend a training class (90 minutes) on the first day (they were given 90+ day warning to clear their calendars) then start using the software after their class. On day two Worldox was auto starting on their systems and could not be shut off by the user (we are a Citrix Xen Desktop environment) and they went back for 'advanced' training (another 90 minute class). We then had weekly followup meetings with the pilot group for the next month to address any problems, shortcomings or complaints. Many practice groups also had group meeting to discuss their issues or concerns.
Overall, I think it went quite well. As is always the case, some people embraced the change, some people fought it and some were like whatever, just tell me what to do. Here is a quick list of things IT needs to consider carefully
- Storage - Where and how much will be needed
- Many of our staff have opted to move all their active cases entirely into our Document Management system, so make sure you plan for that
- Consider how you will handle Discovery and other large data sets that Document Management isn't really designed to handle. It might be discovery software or storing outside of the Document Management System???
- Backup and Restore - Make sure you consider this going forward, because no one will be able to work if Your Document Management is down.
- Feature set - Consider each feature and determine if it is needed and how it should be used in your environment
- DocTypes - Take a lot of time thinking about these, it isn't as easy as you think, again consider all practice areas
- Categories - I would advise against Personal Categories, Folder and public Categories are very helpful. Again, create them with thought given to all practice areas and users.
- Other optional features you may, or may not want to use
- Security - Consider who should have access to what features. For instance, should everyone be able to salvage files or remove a legal hold?
- OCR Software - Consider adding OCR software to fully leverage Worldox
- You may want to OCR your Legacy docs as well. If you do it will take time, our system is estimating 6 months to OCR all of our data (but we have over a billion pages in PDF or tiff)
- Prioritize OCR of Worldox (new) docs over legacy
- Integration - Lawbase integrates nicely with Worldox
- When a matter is opened in our Case Management software it is also created in Worldox.
- You can open the Document Management for a matter from inside our Case Management Software (It also integrates with our Accounting software)
- We created a "Send To" in Worldox that allows all mail for a matter to be sent to the Paralegals, Attorneys, or both related to that matter. Worldox calls on our Case Management software to find the appropriate parties to send the mail to for each matter.
- Time - Don't let people rush you, be deliberate and thorough in your design and implementation it will pay off
Hope the info is helpful to you.