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Electronic discovery

As a result of the pandemic, the legal industry experienced a dramatic shift in business-as-usual dispute and investigations activity, including e-discovery. Most organizations pivoted to a remote workforce and legal departments grappled with how to manage a growing workload with fewer resources and smaller budgets, as well as addressing new security and data protection issues brought on by remote work. All this comes at a time when controlling outside counsel costs tops the list of priorities for 89 percent of law department leaders.

In response, organizations have adapted the way they source and purchase legal-related services. Legal departments are placing a special focus on document review, the most costly and unpredictable part of e-discovery. Organizations are accelerating managed review models that were already underway pre-pandemic, conducting a review of their external resources to ensure a return on investment, and increasing the use of automated tools and machine learning technology. Almost one-third of legal departments actually increased their technology budget in 2020.

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