In an effort to meet the increasing standards demanded by the courts in the area of electronic discovery, companies and law firms are turning to e-discovery service providers such as Advanced Discovery. Unfortunately, many choose e-discovery service providers without taking the necessary preventative steps to avoid common miscommunications that can occur when dealing with less experienced vendors.
Two of the most common complaints clients have regarding e-discovery service providers are missed deadlines and poor work quality. This can often be the result of poor communication at the outset of the project, although such problems can arise during the project itself as needs change throughout the discovery process. By communicating frequently and consistently with an experienced e-discovery service provider, clients are more likely to receive their deliverables without missed specifications, deadlines met and a reduction in unnecessary costs due to recollecting or reprocessing.
E-discovery projects do not customarily lend themselves to immediate knowledge of what will ultimately be required or how involved the process will be. Therefore, it can be difficult for e-discovery service providers to give an exact initial estimate of how much one particular project may cost. There are actions, however, that can help you keep costs down and avoid surprises when the bill arrives. An e-discovery service provider should be able to explain all unit prices that they charge; such as whether they charge by page, document, and gigabyte or on a fixed fee or hourly basis. One can use this information to project rough estimates based upon how much data is anticipated, though it is crucial to revise these estimates as more definite numbers are available. When the amount of data is known; request a written estimate that includes details about all required services, per unit pricing and any incidental costs that are likely to occur throughout the project, including shipping and media that the vendor may not customarily include.
Preferred Vendor Approach
Although some clients prefer to select e-discovery service providers on a case-by-case basis, there are many advantages for opting to employ a preferred-vendor approach. Choosing to collaborate with one particular vendor, even for a flexible period of time prior to re-evaluation of the relationship, minimizes the potential for work product errors and provides more efficiency. This is due to the familiarity gained between the client and the provider, so the vendor already possesses invaluable knowledge of what the company has needed in the past, preferences, common specifications and persons in charge.
By participating in collaborative and active communication with your e-discovery service provider, and requesting complete information regarding pricing and services, clients can focus more on the work they are uniquely qualified to do on their cases. Using a quality vendor, such as Advanced Discovery, on a routine basis will also help projects get started more quickly and provide better value in service to the client. For more information on e-discovery services, visit www.advanceddiscovery.com.