May I say, this past month, being engaged with all the audiences and partners who populated the iManage ConnectLive events has been fun, exciting and enlightening in equal measure. Moving from New York to London, in two short weeks, brought its challenges, but the energy and care that went into making these events a success carried me and the Workshare team through. 

Email DLP becomes a reality for Legal…Integration with Security Policy Manager

A particular highlight of ConnectLive for the Workshare team was Ian Raine, iManage’s Director of Product Management, Security & Information Governance, taking to the stage to talk about how we’ve been working with them to extend security for clients through Workshare Secure’s integration with iManage Security Policy Manager (SPM).

It’s been widely publicized that misaddressed emails are the number one cause of data loss for businesses around the world – whether that’s caused intentionally or unwittingly. Pairing iManage SPM with Workshare Secure enables clients of SPM to finally be able to govern email distribution of matter documents, preventing unintentional release of sensitive information to the wrong people. It also provides a scalable way to control or prevent distribution to unauthorized or non-corporate email domains, like Gmail.

Workshare has been saying for a while now how important it is to bring leading legal IT vendors together to create co-roadmaps that solve big issues facing the industry, rather than placing the burden on clients to integrate solutions. Judging by the excitement and volume of traffic we had at our booth and coverage in subsequent blogs, including this one by Jason Plant, it’s clear that together with iManage we’re managing to solve a long-standing security problem in a compelling way.

The truth of “Embedded” vs. “Integrated” file comparison

Our vision of bringing vendors closer together was pioneered with Workshare file comparison. For some while, we’ve been working to make it easier for IT teams to maintain the legal desktop while supporting their move to the cloud. This has meant we’ve been heavily focussed on embedding our technology in leading legal platforms, such as iManage Work 10

Others have been mirroring our messaging on this, which is flattering, but deceptive, as “embedding” software goes way beyond “integrating” a comparison service.

Here’s why it’s different.

It means the entire comparison experience is delivered in the browser, rather than just the redline result. So, what? What does that mean to IT and the end user?

It means the entire Workshare DeltaView file comparison experience is rendered in HTML, including the redline. So, rather than delivering back a redline document for review, users can interact with their comparison result on any device as if they were on their desktop. They can view changes by category, they can select and zoom-in, and, of course, output to the traditional Word, Track Change or PDF versions if they choose.

Beyond being a superb user experience, embedding makes the whole process much faster and significantly more secure due to the vast reduction in data transit required. Competitor solutions, for example, require full documents to be downloaded or transferred to other cloud platforms for viewing.

So, if you’re looking for a comparison experience designed for the cloud era, Workshare is the only truly embedded comparison solution on the market. 

Making deployments and upgrades easier

Another highpoint of ConnectLive was Anthony Phillips, director of engineering, demonstrating iManage’s new auto-update functionality. iManage on the desktop, with Workshare, can now be packaged and automatically deployed, which makes it easier for IT teams to move to the latest version.

As organizations, iManage and Workshare are delivering significant innovations, but a barrier has always been the timing of releases and support for the respective desktop integrations between us (and all the other legal vendors that have add-ins and need to intra-operate on desktop solutions). It’s a great move by iManage to provide a co-deployment model for the legal ecosystem, which removes these barriers and provides a framework that Workshare, and others, can use to help customers upgrade to the next version quickly and simply.

An observation…all this change

With these innovations coming to fruition at the same time as Windows 10 and Office 2016 upgrades, there is a need for firms to set aside budget to handle change communications. I’m from the software industry – employee benefits and HR solutions – where every deployment was associated with a significant year-one investment (roughly 50% of the recurring fees) in communications, training and engagement programs.

It was great to see Travelling Coaches and Gina Buser leading the way with a session on how to prepare organizations for new ways of working, including plans and programs designed to engage and train legal users on the value contained in the new Work 10 interface. These gains from the new UI are significant and, in many areas, will vastly reduce waste and inefficiency, but only if users know how and where to use them.

Great stuff Gina and team!

Until next time

In many ways, ConnectLive 2018 was a kick-off for conversations and solutions that will now be continued throughout this year and into next. I'm grateful to iManage for the opportunities and also to everyone – partners, clients and potential clients – who came to talk to us at both events about Workshare Compare and Secure.

Until we meet again.

PS - We’re also grateful to the portrait artists from who patiently recreated likenesses of nearly everyone in the Workshare team - we seriously loved this event extra!