Most Popular Records Manager Product Gets Better With User Feedback

When your Records Manager solution has over 550,000 active users, you are presented with a rich opportunity to learn about your product — not just what people like about it, but how it can improve.

That’s precisely what we did with the latest version of our market-leading records management product, iManage Records Manager 6.4. Part of iManage Work Product Management, iManage Records Manager is the leading system used by professionals to manage and govern records of all types — including physical files, electronic documents, and emails.

Starting in the Fall of 2015, we engaged with the iManage Records Manager User Group consisting of members from our active user base and headed by Barbara Dalton, McDermott Will & Emery. Over the course of 10 months, the user group met regularly to view demos, test features, give feedback, and help guide the development of the product.

All of what we learned was valuable, and some of it was downright eye opening. Let me give you an example.

One of the features we previewed in front of the user group was a new disposition workflow module that automates the defensible disposition of records that have reached their disposition date. We asked the user group to vote on the importance of the feature using a 10 point scale, where 0-5 means fairly indifferent, 5-7 means somewhat interested, 7-9 means very interested, and 10 means extremely interested. When it came time to vote on the importance of this particular feature, nobody raised his or her hand to cast a vote in the 0-5, 5-7, or 7-9 ranges. When 10 was offered, everybody put their hands up.

We knew that disposition workflow addressed serious pain points for customers — but we didn’t realize until then just how strongly people felt about it. The disposition workflow functionality wound up being the single most requested feature from the user group.

The appeal of this module — which is available as an add-on component to iManage Records Manager 6.4 — is several-fold. Historically, to track down material that had reached its disposition date, users had to manually run a disposition eligibility report, print it off or export it to Excel, chase down approvals, and then manually mark the records — sometimes thousands of them — as approved for disposition.

The workflow disposition module streamlines and automates many of these stubbornly manual processes around disposition of critical work product. It also helps firms better enforce their retention policies so that sensitive data doesn’t stick around past its disposition date. All the while, it captures a full audit trail of approvals, reducing risk while ensuring compliance.

In addition to voicing a strong vote for workflow disposition, our users provided feedback that helped drive more than 20 usability enhancements in iManage Records Manager 6.4. The wants and needs of our customers are reflected in everything from the product’s modernized look and feel, to its integrated support for Iron Mountain and other external warehousing vendors — all of which will help to make customers more effective and productive in carrying out their work.

Listening to users is a strategy we used to great effect in developing Work 9.4, which represented a complete overhaul of our flagship document and email management product. We were pleased to take a similar approach for Records Manager 6.4 as well.

After all: no market-leading product stays in the lead for long if it doesn’t listen to its customers.