Litera Microsystems Approach to Product Integration

By Jason Vander Meer on November 30, 2017
Jason Vander Meer

As Chief Product Officer, Jason is responsible for defining and negotiating the strategic vision, planning, execution, delivery, and launch of products in the Litera suite.

This past summer, we announced that Litera and Microsystems were joining forces. We are excited to show the market what these two organizations can do combined, rather than competing. The obvious benefits of vendor consolidation are offering more support, expertise, and products that provide broader coverage of the document and drafting life cycle, as well as, a single point of contact for any specific needs. However, when we embarked on this journey we wanted to keep some key aspects in mind that have made both companies successful.

Our Challenge

The products created, technology developed, and problems solved are all attributes that made each company successful. For us to continue to be successful, our clients need to be successful, and we genuinely care about the value added and the experience our clients have with our products. We needed to keep the most valuable aspects of each product while also bringing them together. This was the challenge presented to us as we decided how to integrate our product portfolio.

Our Approach

As various products were evaluated, we made sure to keep our clients’ interests in mind. In the case of overlapping products, many factors were considered, including the feature sets, performance, client feedback, market adoption, and base technology. We determined the strengths and weaknesses of each, and reviewed why firms chose one product over the other. From this information, we decided whether to remove competing products from the market and provide the complimentary product for the same price and term, or to keep products in the market as we discovered their abilities to solve diverse problems.

With our metadata platforms, Metadact and 3BClean, we had the opportunity to thoroughly review two of the leading platforms in the market, and found both are trusted by our clients. In the spirit of putting our clients’ needs first, we created a path forward that will continue to serve our clients, while also expanding our marketing-leading metadata offering. We decided that 3BClean would remain in maintenance mode, as it has been, and will continue to enhance Metadact to make it the metadata platform for the future.

The Outcome

  • 3BClean is not going away. We will continue to support the platform for our clients and there is no intention to force any migrations or to set a sunset date.
  • We will continue to test and provide updates for bug fixes, issues inhibiting workflows, Microsoft security patches, new operating systems, and new versions of Office and Exchange.
  • We will not be making significant changes from an enhancement or new workflow standpoint, the feature set in 3BC will largely stay as is.

Metadact will be the primary metadata cleaning platform going forward, but we will incorporate many of the most compelling features of 3BClean. The goal is for the products to come together seamlessly. To accomplish this, we will be working to provide the following in 2018:

  • Various aspects of the 3BClean user experience will be incorporated into Metadact, including aspects for the standard end user, as well as IT engineers.
  • Changes will be made to Metadact to allow 3BClean clients to migrate in a phased manner, making the process feel like an upgrade rather than a migration.

We chose to focus on Metadact because it is better suited to support future technology choices and solve problems firms will and are already facing. Here is a summary of why we chose Metadact:

  • Metadact can easily integrate with modern technologies such as the cloud and web. While many clients are not ready for the cloud, we know being cloud-ready is an important factor to consider for the future.
  • Metadact is more scalable for multi-server, multi-site infrastructures where failover is required.
  • Migrating to Metadact will not create additional IT setup because of its similarities to 3BClean.

Clients can choose to continue using 3BClean or migrate to Metadact immediately:

  • Clients will be able to leverage the same contract and commercials in place for 3BClean today.
  • We will waive consulting fees for any help provided to our clients in the migration process.
  • Clients can choose to migrate at any time within the term of their contract.

These options are part of the valuable, one-on-one discussions we are having with our clients. We know there is always a level of uncertainty and anxiety around the impacts of decisions made during a merger, which is why we want to be fully transparent and share our process and conclusions. Our goal is to provide a level of protection and risk reduction to clients, while not impeding end-user workflows. We will continue to refine this in 2018 using the best of 3BClean and Metadact.

Topics: Metadata, Litera Microsystems

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