The Bridge - August 2013 - (Page 4)
I am often surprised how law firms seem to overlook how broad a field information management
is. Although many firms now have Information Technology C-level executives, the focus on
information management has not widened to include Records Management in all instances.
Indeed, in some instances there is no direct connection. Few firms have firm-wide records
managers and far fewer firms have uniform protocols including retention schedules governing
how electronic and hard copy records are to be managed.
Meanwhile, our search for the paperless office continues amidst a shift in the industry towards
electronic records as a primary source of case information. Fifteen years ago, our dependence
on paper was much greater. Use of email was on the rise, but faxes were still used with great
regularity. Client documents were most often tendered as hard copy originals and document
productions often involved working with outside copy services to produce boxes upon boxes of
responsive documents, of which we would keep multiple sets in our file rooms.
Jackson Lewis LLP
Jason Santiago can be
reached at 415-796-5424 or
by email at Jason.santiago
While our shift towards electronic records signals we are less reliant on paper and while that is
certainly a green development, we remain reliant on paper in many ways and are plunging
headlong into the future with paper in hand under force of habit. Take, for instance, the
prevalence of productions tendered on discs. The same outside copy service that once copied
multiple sets of your responsive documents is still in business producing blow-backs from the
discs your opposing counsel used to respond to your request for production.
Ours is a maturing industry. Soon, the critical mass of attorneys working in AmLaw firms will
have come up with computers as part of their everyday experience. Just like our current 1st
Years now, these future lawyers will not rely on paper nearly as much as their predecessors.
Likewise, this upcoming workforce will have grown up with a green ethos firmly implanted in
their minds and this ethos will influence their approach to how they work and how they play. My hope is over time this move
towards green approaches will be coupled with a more comprehensive approach to managing information and the media on
which we find information.
There is a great deal of work to be done in order to get to that future. And, one can certainly say we cannot get there
from here. Records Managers need to be viewed as important members of the information management team along with their
counterparts in IT. And, as we continue to depend on new advances in technology, as purchasers we should be mindful of
how our purchase preferences influence manufacturing decisions. Our IT colleagues can play an important role in this respect
by purchasing recyclable technology.
Paper records management and IT are not strange bed fellows particularly when viewed through the prism of green
initiatives and their necessity. Indeed, I aver soon we may not be able to tell the two apart.
Golden Gate Chapter
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Bridge - August 2013
The Bridge - August 2013
Final Rule Makes Changes to HIPPA Regulations and HITECH Act and Could Lead to More Breach Notifications
Relationships in Business
Effective Change Management for Sustainable Records Future
Records Management: What it Means for Legal Services Professionals
Change is Good: E-Discovery and the Modern Practice of Law
2012– 2013 Fiscal Years Financial Report
Salary Survey Order Form
2013 Business Partners
Golden Gate Chapter Leadership
August 2013 Calendar
The Bridge - August 2013