Mallory Hendry: How to Optimize Results and Minimize Costs During Document Review

Extract from Mallory Hendry’s article “How to Optimize Results and Minimize Costs During Document Review”

In the quest to optimize document review results and minimize cost, one basic concept reaps the most rewards: planning.

“There are things when you’re building a doc review methodology – from small details like appropriate highlighting for privilege and key terms, to the structure of document tags, to how you build out your issue tables for how documents are identified and related back to key issues and strategies – that literally cut the time a person spends pushing buttons in half, which really streamlines things,” says Tiana Van Dyk, Senior Director, Client Services at Epiq, a global leader in legal and business services.

“Small changes facilitate one or two seconds off every document, which adds up tremendously over time. There are the big strategies like how to tackle analytics versus linear review, but before you’ve even picked up a pencil and done anything to the documents, if you build an efficient physical review structure, you’re already steps ahead.”

Abbas Najarali, Senior Director, Operations, agrees that an emphasis on upfront planning cannot be overstated, and he points to engagement from the right individuals and from the very start of the project as key to establishing efficient workflows. When engaged in a large-scale document review, unless there’s a true scope change, switching direction downstream means more work, more effort, and more cost so having key players develop and disseminate proper instructions to the team sets the review up for success. Doing sampling, for example, to validate that issues identified appear representative of the actual issues in the documents also drives efficiency: if issue codes are too high-level or generic a higher percentage of documents ends up in the “yes bucket” which dilutes the richness of the categorization and may increases cost in second level review.

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