Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Adding Value to iManage - SmartSpace

There are obviously still some old school innovation juices flowing somewhere under the covers at Baker Robbins.

Once early pioneers and innovators in the iManage/Interwoven add-on space (particularly when the Interwoven application was taking the market by storm) the team at BRCo have been relatively quiet on the DMS differentiation front since the migration of DocsOpen firms slowed down, and since joining the Thomson Reuters stables.

However, there is still some smarts in their space.

Ladies and gentlemen....meet

From the demo and information available, SmartSpace appears to be a nice add-on which has been quietly played with by some early adopters since June of this year and dipping its toe just ever so slightly into the wider Legal Technology world via demonstrations to a selected few at the recent ILTA conference.

SmartSpace provides a unique solution to a classic "white space" problem by adding an integrated matter centric collaboration area automatically on matter inception to the top level of the matter workspace folder tree.

...let's use the term "collaboration area" rather than "wiki" so as to not scare too many people off. Even we've been convinced that "wiki" is just soooo "Steve Jobs Pre-Liver Transplant"...

We say bravo to the old BRCo crew for SmartSpace, and encourage existing iManage users with responsibility for IT and/or KM to at least take a look at the way in which this works - particularly if you have practice areas or matter teams who are looking for specific ways to improve their collaboration and knowledge sharing, and/or those who have yet to build a fully integrated knowledge repository or collaboration application.

We're not sure of the pricing structure for the add-on, or the implementation effort, but it is worth the review just to see how innovation should still be expected in our industry - and to see how some people are still embracing the approach of seeking ways to "squeeze more out of what we already have".

A posting of possible improvement ideas for SmartSpace is covered here in Caselines.

It will be interesting to see if and when the Autonomy iManage team offer such functionality as standard out of the box, and/or if and when the internal IT teams develop and share an easy way to integrate their own MS SharePoint pages in this manner. Irrespective, at least someone is still thinking...


David Hobbie said...

Thanks for the link.

I don't see why we should be afraid of the word "wiki." It is an unusual word, but once the origin is explained, it ties nicely into the benefits of features of the tool (quick, efficient, easy to share etc.)

I would draw a distinction with the demonination "blog" which to some people pulls in connotations of political scandal and general free-for-all-ness.

Kate Simpson said...

Definitely interesting link, thanks. Any ideas what it's built on? We're doing this with SharePoint (a kind of home-grown version of SmartSpace), but 8.5 kinda also gives you some of this basic functionality - just not quite in the right place.