There is something to be said for foresight and vision… and having the conviction to follow through and commit to a specific direction. Such was the case in June in 2017, when Tikit (now a part of Advanced), announced that NetDocuments would be the document management solution (DMS) Tikit would be providing for all new clients. The decision to go ‘all in’ on NetDocuments, in line with Tikit’s vision to deliver world-class document and matter life cycle management to the legal and professional services sector, was a bold one. Cloud tech was not the default deployment option for law firms at the time, and only the more innovative firms had committed to taking the 'cloud' leap.
However, their strategic move to align with NetDocuments only represents a sliver of the company’s expertise in the document management space, particularly within Canada. With 25 years of experience in legal document management and Information Governance, the Tikit-Advanced North American team, led by President Peter Zver, has "been there and done that" when it comes to advising Canadian law firms on DMS best practices, technology options, implementation efforts, and user support and training.
As a NetDocuments global platinum partner, Tikit-Advanced are accredited by NetDocuments in the delivery, training, and support of their platform. Combine this with the team’s experience delivering and supporting many of the Canadian legal market’s document management solutions over the past several decades, and their popularity locally is evident.
Fast forward to 2021, the current chapter of document management consultancy, initially accelerated with 2017’s 'all in with NetDocuments' decision, is taking shape. Tikit-Advanced is a big believer in 'best of breed' technology guided by application areas and client needs. This has been the company’s long-time philosophy with its Carpe Diem timekeeping software and is certainly the case with NetDocuments. When asked about NetDocuments, Peter Zver states they treat the cloud DMS like their own IP. "We have the know-how in the document management world, the best practices, the formula for success based on 30 years of selecting the best technology for the times, which now is clearly NetDocuments. A simple comparison of R&D investment and focus on innovation among the popular document and content management solutions definitely points the needle toward NetDocuments."
In terms of NetDocuments momentum in Canada, Zver notes that business really began accelerating in 2019, based on previous success with NetDocuments in the UK and EMEA. "We are becoming very competitive by leveraging our local Canadian presence (Peter and his team are headquartered in Montreal) as well as our pedigree in the DMS space (since 1994) and backed by our wider DM and data migration teams in the UK. That coupled with the law firm’s consideration of a new workplace post -pandemic, the NetDocuments platform is assuming a primary role in this transformative journey for law firms."
NetDocuments is now available in French, and Peter and his bilingual team execute all transactions in local Canadian currency. "From a customer lens, NetDocuments is localized and customized for the French Canadian/Canadian market, from initial consultation to sales, implementation, training and support. For too long Canadian firms have been treated as the black sheep when it came to adopting legal technology, often inheriting whatever their US counterparts used, often years later."
While NetDocuments is having success in the Canadian large firm market, Tikit-Advanced sees imminent opportunities in the so called 'SML' (small-medium law firm), market. "The ROI that SML firms are realizing with NetDocuments is tremendous. We have a firm that recently literally closed their office and have gone to a 100% virtual, enabled at the core by the NetDocuments cloud document management platform. These are massive shifts in service delivery for law firms, transitioning from a physical to a digital HQ, and in parallel from a physical to a digital file."
According to Zver, SML firms are not only recognizing the value of a next gen DMS service like NetDocuments by replacing on-premises legacy systems, but they are already looking ahead at what else the cloud platform provides in terms of productivity and service delivery. As such, NetDocuments modules like CollabSpaces (a client facing portal) and ND Thread (secure matter-based discussions) are both recognized by firms as key in enhancing the law firm client relationship and improving firm competitiveness. The 'obvious' business case for the cloud and cloud DMS as the foundational piece is now there in our Canadian legal market.
SML now see that the cloud is within reach, and that digital transformation is most likely unavoidable. We are seeing small firm administrators and the professional staff take a much more active role in the vetting and selection process, so the value proposition has to speak to their respective roles and objectives. In addition, we work very well with IT staff who can look beyond "the flashing server lights of on prem systems" and see long term value in leveraging the cloud as a strategic move for their firm in terms of productivity, risk management, security and compliance and overall improvement in service delivery.
So, when it’s time to "parlez-vous" DMS and NetDocuments, reach out to Peter Zver and his Advanced team to help unlock the potential of the cloud, and the leading cloud DMS platform for law firms and law departments.
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