BigHand today announced
the largest UK law firm deployment of integrated Dragon NaturallySpeaking
speech recognition software is taking place at Shoosmiths. Following a pilot
with 10 authors, the first phase sees the firm deploying BigHand’s
server-side speech recognition module to a further 100 authors in order to
supplement secretarial support, increasing the volume of business undertaken
without increasing costs. BigHand say their implementation of Dragon provides low-risk, highly effective speech recognition solution for law firms.

 

The deployment of speech recognition is a collaborative
initiative between Shoosmiths HR and IT departments, Louise Hadland, HR Director at
Shoosmiths said “Like many firms coming through the recession, we
are reviewing our processes to increase efficiency and effectiveness. Following
consultation with secretaries and Practice Groups, and a subsequent trial of
the software, we identified speech recognition as a tool that will help us grow
the business constructively and positively without increasing costs. Speech
recognition lends itself to high volume note taking such as file notes,
interviews, meeting notes and minutes. Removing this work from secretaries
frees them to focus on client facing documentation; as a result we expect to
increase the volume of work undertaken whilst maintaining our ratios.

 

“Our user base is demand led, rather than forcing
change which may have a negative impact, authors are hearing positive comments
from their colleagues and requesting the software. Solicitors are now
challenging the way they work; room to grow and think differently is an
opportunity to question working practice. Just because work has always been
done a certain way does not mean it should necessarily continue.”

 

David Bason, IS Director for Shoosmiths adds “BigHand’s innovative voice productivity platform
successfully delivers speech recognition technology that represents a
significant opportunity for us to increase our productivity. Combined with a
workflow review and BigHand for BlackBerry deployment for out of office working,
we have very quickly started to prove that speech recognition delivers
quantifiable results. Our experience of the implementation and training has
been excellent and we are confident that usage will continue to increase.”