Peer to Peer Magazine

Summer 2018

The quarterly publication of the International Legal Technology Association

Issue link: http://epubs.iltanet.org/i/1025033

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9 WWW.ILTANET.ORG BEST PRACTICES Veing New Technology? Ask the Provider These Eight Questions Question #4: What Certifications Do Your Support Team Members Possess? You want cloud providers that have demonstrated knowledge and skills through technology certifications. Not only does this speak to the level of sophistication of the support team, it also highlights a vendor's commitment to excellence. The support team should have certifications in mainstream soware that law firms and legal departments rely on, such as Microso products, as well as legal-specific solutions such as practice management and ediscovery technology. Question #5: Do You Offer Single- or Multi-year Agreements? Oentimes vendors will lure you in with promises of low rates and quality service. Then when it is time to sign on the doed line you find out that you are locked into a five-year deal. You can avoid this by determining beforehand what length of time the service provider requires in its contracts. If the contract requires several years' worth of commitment, you should push for a shorter time frame. You will want that flexibility if your firm has a poor experience or your needs change. should be sufficient because Microso could take action within the United States to obtain the data. The Supreme Court dismissed the case on April 17, a month aer Congress passed the Cloud Act and made the court's intervention unnecessary. The new law states that a "provider of electronic communication service" must comply with a court order for data "regardless of whether such communication, record or other information is located within or outside of the United States." You can still run into issues when data is hosted within U.S. borders as some states have stricter regulations than others, and you should know which laws could impact your firm. However, data storage is vastly less complex when all the cloud provider's servers are located within U.S. borders. Question #2: Are You Vendor Agnostic? You do not want to transition to the cloud only to find that your provider has ties that will either prevent it from fully supporting your firm or limit your choices for current or future soware. That means you should look for a cloud provider that does not have restrictive relationships with any particular vendor. Say that you decide to move to a cloud-based desktop and it turns out that your vendor has financial ties to a big soware company that works in several industries. If you later decide to switch soware and move to a new practice management system, your provider may push back and say it does not support that technology due to its partnerships. And suddenly, your firm has limited technology choices. Question #3: Do You Have Legal-specific Experience? When you ask providers, many of them will say they have experience with the legal industry but quite a few can only scratch the surface of the challenges that aorneys face. These providers lack the knowledge of day-to-day law firm operations and priorities as well as how to work with legal-specific solutions. When you are facing a crisis you want someone who understands your situation and can work with you through the challenges. You do not want to transition to the cloud only to find that your provider has ties that will either prevent it from fully supporting your firm or limit your choices for current or future software.

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