Summary

National Grid plc is a British multinational electricity and gas utility company headquartered in London. It is one of the world’s largest investor-owned utilities and plays a vital role in connecting millions of people to the energy they use – safely, reliably, and efficiently.

National Grid has a large internal legal department in the UK. A reorganization of the business prompted the legal function to bring improved and coordination to the way it managed legal matters.

After a thorough review of the market, National Grid chose ES/Unity, Powered by Repstor, an Office 365-based matter lifecycle management solution to bring consistency to the way its employees store and access matter-related documents and emails.

Challenge

National Grid has a large internal legal department in the UK. This is made up of six teams which provide services to more than 17 business entities and 24 business areas. A reorganization of the business and a drive to provide more with less across National Grid as a whole, prompted the legal function to bring improved and coordination to the way it managed legal matters.

National Grid lead teams are dispersed geographically, and many individuals work from home at least one day a week. But as long as legal documents and emails trails were spread across Microsoft SharePoint, shared drives, and individual personal folders within emails archives, effective collaboration wasn’t really possible.

Rather than invest in a dedicated legal document management system, National Grid wanted to make fuller use of standard software that users had already. Having conducted a detailed analysis, they decided against a dedicated system and chose to standardize on document management in SharePoint.

Strategy

After a thorough review of the market, National Grid chose ES/Unity, Powered by Repstor, an Office 365-based matter lifecycle management solution which harnesses a company’s existing Microsoft Office/Outlook and SharePoint environments. It brings consistency to the way individuals store and access matter-related documents and emails, without requiring that users change the way they naturally work.

Designed to complement Office 365, the software allows employees to easily design and create matter workspaces in SharePoint, and also to surface them through native integration with Microsoft Outlook. This allows lawyers to work with their matters using a familiar Outlook user experience for email filing, document management and collaboration, and managing the matter lifecycle.

Results

A follow up user survey, after go-live, 87 percent of legal team members said their experience of Repstor and the new way of working was ‘excellent’. The remaining 13 percent were happy too, describing the new set up as ‘good’.

Previously there were lots of different legacy ways of doing things, and a number of different document management systems and approaches in use, and we wanted to move to a standardized approach – to improve productivity, simplicity and efficiency."

- Mo Ajaz

Head of Head of Legal Operational Excellence
National Grid plc