The Importance of Usage Data

By Matt James on June 8, 2018
Matt James

Matt is the Vice President of Pre-Sales at Litera, where he oversees the Sales Engineering and Evangelist teams. Matt and team focus on improving the day to day of legal professionals by eliminating challenges with improved process and technology. While advocating the needs of our customers, it’s also critical that the Evangelists balance that with challenging status quo to force change.

I’ve met with many firm C-levels over the last 18 months and while most are focused on best-in-breed software solutions, the overwhelming theme is around no longer being in the business of “technology needs,” but the business of “user needs.” The priorities for new tech investments no longer originate as an IT project, but from the user base and their voice of satisfaction (or lack-there-of) in the tools they have/need to do their job.

While end-user perception is often an accurate reflection of the usability and relevance of software in their practice, it’s challenging to gather feedback that’s not heavily sided in one direction or the other. Traditional methods of resorting to ignored IT emails, unattended trainings, and daunting surveys to gather usage metrics fall short in response and accuracy.

This is the scenario a west coast-based AMLAW 100 firm found themselves in when they believed software they purchased was not widely utilized. As a result, a decision (based on a lack of data) to discontinue the software licensing almost disrupted a large user base. After leveraging the insights and capabilities listed in the chart below, this firm determined that what they thought was just a small number of total users, turned out to be over half the users in the firm. After this eye-opening experience, they now plan to hold all of their software vendors to the same standards, where getting a seat at the table for consideration requires an unobstructed view into the user’s adoption. If the new legal technology priority is user satisfaction, shouldn’t vendors aid in the prevention of user disruption?

A global firm with a top reputation in legal technology, winning the ILTA Innovative Firm of the Year award almost annually, was leveraging usage as an opportunity for education. Struggling to gain traction on an incentivized enterprise expansion opportunity, Litera Microsystems was able to proactively offer the firm a CLE concept as a way forward. While all lawyers attending the sessions received a CLE credit, they also were made aware of technology that allows them to adapt to the fast-paced market with high quality expectations.

All this progress was executed in 3 weeks’ time, and in the midst of it, a top-earning partner sponsored an automated proofing initiative, which led to an email sent to 900+ lawyers encouraging continued use in firm-invested technology.

Over the last few years, Litera Microsystems has helped elevate expectations of a vendor’s responsibility in technology adoptions and professional development in a variety of methods, one being usage analytics. We encourage our customers to embrace the partnership and to leverage usage data to align with their users’ need. This partnership offers data to the customer on information such as; the number of users leveraging a solution, the frequency in how often it is used, and which particular features are engaged. And that’s not all. We are continually developing our ability to extend beyond quantifying use, eventually allowing customers to understand when features are used in highly important times and apply a value on a per document or matter basis. All this data will allow our customers to make a decision for continued investment with clear and defined evidence.

Beyond the raw data, consumable reports help identify trends in usage, unique users, and top features. Fully understanding your data allows for endless opportunities to invest in education, understand how your firm compares to one with a similar footprint, and feel confident that these solutions are the solutions lawyers need to do their jobs.


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