International law firm Norton Rose expects to save £500,000 a year by introducing an integrated search engine to improve knowledge sharing between 2,000 users across 24 offices in 20 countries.
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The search engine was developed using enterprise search technology from Fast. The firm chose Fast after testing a shortlist of four competing systems for their ability to integrate searches of internal and external information sources.
"Time spent searching for information is expected to be reduced by a third, saving costs to our clients and enabling our lawyers to be more productive and efficient. We valued these savings at half a million pounds a year," said Amber Rennie, knowledge development manager at Norton Rose.
The firm's aim was to develop a system that would deliver relevant results including highlighted key words and used Fast technology to customise searches.
"Our old search engine could only sort the results by date or relevance and sometimes the results had no obvious relevance at all to the search criteria," said Ann Halpern, director of practice and organisational management at Norton Rose.
The Norton Rose team built the graphical user interface for the system and included a number of customised filters such as practice group and precedents to enable users to refine their searches.
The Fast technology also enabled the system to search in a range of languages for the first time, including traditional and simple Chinese.