Knowledge Center

Important New Features of DM Systems

The leading legal-oriented document management software (DMS) vendors have been active. They recognize the ever-expanding needs of their law firms, corporate legal departments, and related knowledge workers. Are they making changes for the sake of change? Or are they are making your DMS efforts more effectual? Decide for yourself here with a brief overview of new versions from two legal DMS vendors – iManage and NetDocuments.

1. Landing Page: The landing page is the start page, or the initial screen. It should allow a new user to quickly find key functions. Ongoing, it should be a hub of their DMS activity. The screenshots below show recent NetDocuments and iManage landing pages with a new interface. Here at EIM we have seen our clients respond positively to what they describe as ‘clean’ and ‘easy’. Both applications have these integrated features: 

- A search bar for simple and extended searching.
- Clearly identified menus such as Documents, Emails and Matters.
- Clearly identified objects such as PDF’s vs. MS Word documents. 

NetDocuments

[placeholder]
 

iManage Work


[placeholder]
 

2. File – Save: Any DMS should minimize the number of steps to save a document. The screen shots below reflect the DM vendors getting close to implementing ‘lightweight DM’. In the File-Save process you can save to a folder in both NetDocuments or iManage. Or you can also bypass the folders and enter in the information – such as author, client-matter, and document type. Unlike outdated applications, NetDocuments and iManage have integrated file-save dialogue boxes without the need for obtrusive forms or pop-ups appearing. They have a natural workflow more similar to native MS Word, while still capturing essential document metadata. 

NetDocuments


[placeholder]
 

iManage Work


[placeholder]
 

3. Alert Me or Follow: This feature is utilized by both NetDocuments and iManage document management systems. After saving the document you have the ability to activate this feature, which sends you an email notification alerting you when a document is edited. This saves steps instead of manually monitoring activity on important documents. 

NetDocuments

 

iManage Work

 

4. Document Search: Search is essential for a legal DMS. Recent versions of NetDocuments and iManage make searching simpler by integrating a search bar on their landing page. It is as easy as typing words with some subtle extensive features that are too difficult to describe here. Know that they both have Boolean search. Both products allow you to narrow down your search results without having to leave the main page. In the screenshots located below, you can see the filters on the left-hand pane. 

NetDocuments


[placeholder]
  

iManage Work


[placeholder]
 

5. Matter – Centricity: An important feature both NetDocuments and iManage improved in their applications is matter centricity. This concept allows the user to visualize the contents of a client-matter, like a physical file. It provides efficiency in having quick access to active files. As you can see below, NetDocuments and iManage have similar organization, but employ different folder visualization. NetDocuments shows all documents in one screen, iManage uses a more ‘drill-down’ folder approach. 

 NetDocuments


[placeholder]
  

iManage Work


[placeholder]