SER Blog  Customer Stories & Use Cases

Digitally managing legal case work

Julia Pedak

Digitalization poses new demands for legal departments: How can growing volumes of document and data be structured, managed, distributed and processed in a way that is quick, audit-proof and without media disruption — and does not require adding personnel? A professional document management system supports in-house legal teams, legal counsel and employees in digitally processing legal case work.

When creating, reviewing and documenting contracts, briefings and other legal documents, legal teams need a 360-degree view of all current information — this is the only way a case can be processed quickly. It's much easier to do this digitally than on paper. Digital records help legal departments to electronically map out individual record structures. They structure documents pertaining to case work, legal fields, contract partners, etc., also in case someone is absent, to ensure that they are always traceable and retrievable. Key record information, e.g. contact data, the reference number, dates, costs and the case processor, can be seen at a glance in the digital record cover sheet. All record information related to a legal workflow must be available, and this is possible with a combinable full-text and metadata search. It generates individual result lists for all kinds of legal documents. What's more, with modern ECM software such as Doxis, there are no duplicates or redundant records; once a document is filed, it can be linked as often as needed in records and process instances.

Digitizing legal workflows

From drafting to reviewing and from suspending to releasing, automated workflows support all processing steps for contracts or briefings, even across functional areas, departments and locations. The legal team has access to all relevant information directly in the process. Microsoft Office and Outlook, legal databases and internal business applications (e.g. ERP, CRM) can be integrated into Doxis through universal interfaces. By connecting information with processes, work processes are faster and more transparent; the legal team doesn't have to leave its familiar desktop environment.

Ensuring security and compliance

Legal departments receive the support they need from comprehensive document management functions. For example, legal teams can use templates with text components for provisions and address data, which help them to create contracts quickly and consistently while also minimizing mistakes. To fulfill compliance requirements, it is important to know who worked on which document and when. Versioning and audit trail functions, such as those offered by Doxis, track all document modifications. Automated deletion deadlines and locks also make sure that a sensitive document is not accidentally deleted before the retention period is over. Document archiving and the related processes are conducted in compliance with tax code regulations. In addition to complying with legal requirements, a wide-ranging ECM system such as Doxis also fulfills internal compliance regulations through differentiated access rights for documents, records and process instances, which provide user groups and individual employees secure content access.

Keeping an eye on deadlines and costs

Doxis provides an automated deadline monitoring system to help legal teams manage deadlines and dates of contracts, court dates and internal submission deadlines. Manual monitoring is not necessary. Digital lists create an overview of outstanding processes. If a legal proceeding goes to the next instance or if external counsel is needed, the ensuing costs can be displayed on the corresponding digital record sheet. If the budget limit is reached, then the responsible employee is directly notified. With this means of controlling costs and monitoring deadlines, it is possible to keep financial and legal risks to a minimum.

Secure international team work

With Doxis, legal departments of international companies have one software solution that covers all locations and subsidiaries. Doxis is available in 13 languages and implements individual scenarios for access rights and archiving. The Doxis iRoom provides a secure project room for external partners, such as consultants, agencies or other firms, who are involved in a merger or acquisition. The external partners are given protected online access to share information and to work together on documents and process instances. In this way, Doxis supports legal workflows both internally and externally at all times and in an organized, transparent and secure way.

For more information about professional document management in legal departments, visit our website

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