I recently posted about a new, single platform Extranet from Australia called nSynergy. Three reliable sources in Australia suggest this is probably not going to take the market by storm. 

The reports from my sources:

“Apparently, Telstra continues to use the predecessor system to nSynergy and none of the major Australian law firms use the product. Australian general counsels are testing the system but corporate IT and purchasing managers are not keen on supporting a sourcing system unique to legal.”

“It is focused primarily on law firms reporting fees in a standard format; it appears effectively to transfer the administrative burden from GC to firms.”

“nSynergy offers the software free to GC – seeking revenue by charging firms. But some GCs are a little concerned about the potential for hidden costs such as training and hardware, and for fees in the future. Beyond paying fees, firms are reluctant to use it because that would require re-keying data from existing systems”

In light of these comments, it seems to me (1) the report referenced in my prior post may be out in front of what is actually happening and (2) if the real goal is fee tracking, which was not clear to me from that report, it seems GC should use one of the several established e-billing services.

I’ll take this occasion to re-state two of my favorite themes: First, I think the concept behind nSynergy – a single platform or data standard for sharing data among lawyers and clients – does make sense. And second, while such sharing – whether it is documents, billing, or project status – is useful, it is not likely to generate huge savings. Bigger savings will flow from examining how lawyers work and changing processes so that costs are actually reduced.