Over at The Blawg Channel, I made some critical comments about the technology priorities of large law firms, as documented in the 2004 AmLawTech Legal Technology Survey. Among those comments is my belief that many firms are wasting large amounts of money on misguided priorities.
As a timely companion to my comments, especially for those who want to take some positive actions to stem the money drain, CIO Magazine has just published a special “money” feature issue. You’ll need a free registration to read the articles in the issue, but if you are interested in these topics, you should be reading CIO. I especially recommend an article called “Inside an IT Audit,” for its excellent inside story of an actual IT audit conducted by a company. It gives you a great “open the hood” view of what goes on, what to expect and the results and benefits you might expect. The entire collection of articles, built around the theme that CIOs and IT directors should know and be able to speak the language of business, is valuable, but I would also single out an article called “Tips for the Budget Masters” for anyone involved in IT tech budgeting.
While my preference is to consult with law firms and legal departments that want to work on innovative projects, I also can assist with IT audits, budget assessments and the like. If a firm is using all of its tech budget on bread-and-butter issues and projects going nowhere or at least in the wrong directions, even modest corrections can free up significant resources to work on projects that will provide some real benefit to the firm’s lawyers and clients. In my book, that’s a heckuva good thing. However, you don’t have to take my word – check out the “Inside an IT Audit” article and see the real-world benefits that were achieved and decide for yourself.