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Where do “matter management systems” end and other applications pick up?

It is difficult to corral with assurance which software offerings should be included as matter management systems. For example, should systems that primarily focus on electronic submission of bills be treated as matter management systems (See my post of Oct. 18, 2006: lists e-bill package providers.)?

Should we invite into the tent software designed to track information about patents, trademarks and other forms of intellectual property (See my post of Sept. 5, 2009: databases for intellectual property with 11 references.)?

Related software also includes third-party report writers (See my post of May 25, 2011: leading report writers.). Portals, which come in many flavors and with many definitions, complement matter management system software (See my post of Aug. 16, 2006: portal technology; Jan. 25, 2007: boards of directors and portal software; June 4, 2009: a patent portal; Jan. 7, 2010: clients request legal services through portal; Feb. 10, 2010: data warehouses; April 28, 2010 #1: Dell wins award for patent portal; July 7, 2010: policies placed on a portal; Sept. 9, 2010: IBM’s client-facing portals for legal aids; Nov. 27, 2010: platform compared to portal; and April 29, 2011: Lecorpio’s patent portal.).

Software that links e-mail messages to matter management could make the list of related offerings (See my post of April 11, 2011: automatic joinder of contracts and relevant e-mailis.) We could debate over calendar and docket programs, corporate entity managers, procurement systems, databases though which clients request services, and on and on. What in-house lawyers work on – matters – has many software camp-followers.

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