I can see why it has taken e.law some time to assemble their new website following the acquisition of CCH Workflow Solutions in November 2009. The integrated business now covers a very broad range of activities across a wide geographical area, and that alone must have taken some time to assemble in a website with a new corporate identity.
What they have done in addition, however, is taken a great deal of trouble to explain to site visitors what the purpose is of the activities undertaken by the integrated business. Each section – e.forensics, e-discovery, e.courts, bureau services etc – begins with a section called “what is …” where so many sites appear to take it for granted that their visitors understand these things. In basic marketing terms, the number of law firms and corporate clients who do not understand is greater than the number who do. All are affected by the same demands and pressures, not least those of the court rules. A provider who bothers to explain the purposes of the various functions is likely to be attractive to new clients as well as existing ones.
In addition to its Australian offices, e.law operates in Hong Kong, with service centres in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Singapore. They will also go anywhere where data needs to be collected or paper is to be scanned. That is a lot of world to cover, and one in which electronic discovery is a growing need. If Alison Stanfield’s aspirations extended that far when I first met her three years ago, she did not tell me about them. It is an impressive growth-rate.
When I spoke in Sydney last year, I drew attention to Australia’s disproportionate impact on the e-Discovery world. Ringtail Legal started in Australia and FTI Technology, which now owns it, has recently opened a large Australian data centre. Nuix, the most recent addition to the list of sponsors of the e-Disclosure information Project, is an Australian company with a worldwide market. e-Discovery Tools is another example of an Australian software company whose marketplace goes well beyond its home country.
As I have said a few times recently, there is an increasing amount of interchange between Australia and the UK at the procedural level. We are keen to find out how the Practice Note CM 6, now over a year old, is working in practice, which is why both HHJ Simon Brown QC and I were pleased to accept our respective invitations to speak in Sydney this year (not the only reason, I should make clear – I have grown used to a trip down there each year and would feel deprived without it).