Migrated from eDJGroupInc.com. Author: Greg Buckles. Published: 2015-02-22 19:00:00Format, images and links may no longer function correctly. 

As part of an interview request, I did a fast review of SaaS processing, hosting providers suitable for small firms looking for fixed price service. The market does not make this easy for you or for me to make sense of in the eDJ Matrix. The line between software, SaaS and professional services continues to blur as providers create web interfaces to upload/download ESI with hidden 3rd party tools and manual tech time behind the curtain. We originally differentiated between the traditional software and hosted service offerings with the assumption that the hosting providers were using a publicly available technology, example: Catalyst CR by Lighthouse eDiscovery listing indicates that Lighthouse manages/hosts the Catalyst CR platform. There are 115 eDJ Matrix SaaS technology offerings for the Small-Medium Business (SMB), but only 40 Managed Service SaaS offerings for the SMB. Frankly, this is because we only expanded the eDJ Matrix to cover service providers in our last year of analyst work. I started the eDJ Matrix to track and compare technologies many years ago and that is still the most mature data. Updating the Everlaw listing after my briefing last week was easy because they claimed to be free of 3rd party code. My check turned up two relatively new players in the SaaS eDiscovery market, Wind Legal and Escalate. Neither one gives enough hard information on their minimalist websites to confidently categorize them, but at least Wind discloses that they are a custom interface for Relativity.

“Wind provides document review on KCura’s Relativity platform for a flat fee, with all processing and hosting included. Wind provides unlimited customer service and an intuitive dashboard focused on easy uploading and document review.”

Flat fee with full service? Sounds like a deal, but the proof will be in finding real customer references for the service quality. That may take a while since Wind is still in a “free, invite-only Beta version” for up to 10 GB of ESI until this summer. A savvy play could use that 10 GB for ECA of a small matter as long as the beta agreement clauses pass the attorney sniff test for security, retrieval of work product and destruction requests.

I found the Escalate offering rather more mysterious and limited in scope. Processed ESI with a Concordance load file can be either uploaded or shipped on hard drive for hosted review service. Sounds pretty old school to me, but without any details on features, screenshots, pricing or anything else, who can tell? The eDiscovery market is still not friendly to small law firms or first time SMB defendents. New cloud offerings will help, but only if accompanied by strong, flexible service partners who can guide eDiscovery neophytes through our maze.

Greg Buckles wants your feedback, questions or project inquiries at Greg@eDJGroupInc.com. His active research topics include analytics, mobile device discovery, the discovery impact of the cloud, Microsoft’s 2013 eDiscovery Center and multi-matter discovery. Recent consulting engagements include managing preservation during enterprise migrations, legacy tape eliminations, retention enablement and many more.

Blog perspectives are personal opinions and should not be interpreted as a professional judgment. eDJ consultants are not journalists and perspectives are based on public information. Blog content is neither approved nor reviewed by any providers prior to being posted. Do you want to share your own perspective? eDJ Group is looking for practical, professional informative perspectives free of marketing fluff, hidden agendas or personal/product bias. Outside blogs will clearly indicate the author, company and any relevant affiliations. 

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