New document assembly offering online, at no cost (WhichDraft.com)

Guest author Steven Levy reports on a new development:

WhichDraft.com is a new and interesting free online contract site run by two experienced attorneys. This appears to be both a simple and reasonably powerful document assembly tool. It has a large number of pre-drafted contracts for individual users looking to go transactional pro se (after you click through the disclaimer, of course), but I think it has a place in law departments in stimulating thinking about document assembly, whether you ever offer a WhichDraft contract or not.

[C]onsider it a very inexpensive and even elegant way to explore document assembly. If it helps document assembly find a niche use in your department, then compare it to the higher-end products and decide; it will have cost you only an hour of time.

I’ve done document assembly projects with high-end systems, in particular Ixio and Business Integrity. (Disclaimer: I have colleagues I like and respect at both companies.) They’re terrific in different ways, but neither is catching fire. Both WhichDraft and Ixio’s QShift are hosted/SaaS, which means you can try them without involving IT. Business Integrity’s Contract Express sits in the data center atop SharePoint, but its Deal Builder is a hybrid model that you can at least explore before you pull in IT. These products all attack different aspects of the document assembly beast; you need to explore them to figure out which one, if any, meets your needs.”

More references on this blog appear about document assembly (See my post of Feb. 26, 2008: document assembly with 16 references; Aug. 15, 2008: survey results about useful applications from law firms; Dec. 9, 2008: benefits of document assembly according to a general counsel; and Oct. 19, 2009: a solution to several contract management challenges.).

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