General Counsel Metrics asked on its benchmark survey “What matter management system do you use?” Of the 190 other law departments so far that indicated either “none” or “n/a,” it seems that a “none” means what it says, however, “n/a” could mean there is a package but the person does not know the name or does not want to disclose it. In any event, that group has a median of four lawyers, so it is dominated by very small departments. Specifically, 32 of them have a single lawyer; 26 have two lawyers; and 21 have three. What most surprised me, however, and makes me suspect that “n/a” does not mean “no system” is that six companies reported more than 100 lawyers.
As a final note for this update on matter management systems, there were a dozen departments that reported a “custom” system. I assume that means they rolled their own, not that they licensed a package and modified it significantly for their own use. Now step back. Having reported on 125 departments in the group that have licensed a matter management package, it may be that for every ten doing that, one creates a bespoke system. Some of these, we should consider, have legacy systems from years ago; today, few if any law departments have IT or consultants write a system from scratch (See my post of April 3, 2011: early data on no-system departments.).