Mattern Creates IG Policy for Physical and Electronic Records for 150-Attorney Firm

Headquartered in St. Louis, this 150-attorney firm with multiple offices throughout the Midwest approached Mattern about assisting the firm with management of their records, data governance, and library services.

While leadership felt progress had been made with some of the firm’s electronic records practices, professionals in the records department lacked the bandwidth to oversee a firmwide plan to address their paper records. To that end, leadership was looking for an information governance expert to help the firm create a comprehensive information governance policy for both physical and electronic records.  

At the outset of this engagement, Mattern’s certified IGP and records consultants met with leadership to discuss objectives for the project, including:

  • Create an IG Policy with retention schedules that address both paper and electronic records.
  • Review and update onsite records processes and workflows.
  • Benchmark offsite records storage contracts, enabling the firm to implement the retention schedules in a cost-effective way.  
  • Benchmark LexisNexis and Westlaw contracts, review library print subscriptions, and establish best practices for library services.

To develop the firm’s policy, Mattern’s IGP certified consultants capture a thorough understanding of workflows and the various repositories of data from a strategic, cross section of roles ranging from office administrative staff to partners and leadership, to those in the records department. 

To accomplish this, Mattern conducted a combination of hands-on onsite and virtual interviews and focus groups, at the conclusion of which was able to analyze end user satisfaction with the current processes and offsite storage providers, and firm policy versus end user workflows.

The contracts and rates for the firm’s offsite records storage provider were also reviewed in depth to benchmark against the market, as were their library services and legal research contracts.

Mattern’s IGP team presented the firm with a report containing the key areas and recommendations for the firm’s IG policy based upon findings during the assessment.  The policy recommendations encompassed:

  • Identifying where the firm is in on the IG pyramid and the target goal of where the firm should be.
  • Creating an IG framework and an enforceable IG policy complete with retention schedules.
  • Streamlining the use of existing technology to better manage the integration of physical and electronic records assets and providing technology options.
  • Education and training of firm employees, and creation of a Steering Committee.
  • Improving records transaction efficiency and practices for reducing physical files.
  • Improving file maintenance of incoming/outgoing attorney files, email, mail, etc.
  • Digital conversion versus paper storage for active and inactive records.
  • Analyzing current offsite records storage rates and contract terms and conditions benchmarked against industry Best Practice standards.  
  • Benchmarking legal research contracts against industry Best Practice standards including an analysis of the firm’s library print subscriptions that were benchmarked against contracted digital content.

Client comment

The firm’s Director of Human Resources, and the project sponsor, was delighted with the results of the unbiased Phase one analysis and gave Mattern a Net Promoter Score (NPS) of “10” at the project’s conclusion.

Mattern and the firm are in discussions on the implementation of approved recommendations.