Law, Snakard & Gambill, P.C. Modernizes with Worldox DMS
By Ranita Smitherman, Personnel Manager
Law, Snakard & Gambill, P.C
July 1st, 2013
To find a reliable and affordable DMS for a law firm with critical needs for
full text searching capabilities, integration with WordPerfect, disaster
recovery and remote access.
Implementation of Worldox solved a number of the firm’s problems. Its
add-on, Worldox/Web Mobile, allows users to have remote access to
documents from any Internet connection. Worldox also provides
features and integrations such as support for WordPerfect documents. It
was also the most affordable DMS option. The firm saved between
$30,000-$90,000 by choosing Worldox over high-priced competitors.
Worldox is valued as a great product and one of the best assets of the firm.
Staff members have more flexibility and remote access, enhancing daily
“We received positive feedback from everyone at LS&G about the
system. Worldox is a great product and one of the greatest assets of the
system is that our firm now has a lot of flexibility. Attorneys can securely
work remotely and access documents from mobile devices. It was a pleasure
for us to work with Ion Resources, Ltd., Entergel, and Worldox during the
entire process. Installing Worldox was truly a step in the right direction in
terms of our staff and attorneys embracing new technologies. This new
approach has positively enhanced our firm’s operations. In a few short
weeks, we took an old, antiquated system and transformed it into a
modern, efficient system that everybody uses and likes.”- Ranita
Smitherman, Personnel Manager, Law, Snakard & Gambill, P.C.
About the Author:
Ranita Smitherman is the Personnel Manager at Law, Snakard & Gambill, P.C., a law
firm based in Fort Worth, Texas. Email her at
A document management system (DMS) is the lifeblood of a law firm.
If the DMS is broken, the firm really suffers. In 2009, Law, Snakard &
Gambill, P.C (LS&G), a full-service law firm in Fort Worth, Texas,
began experiencing problems with its outdated version of DocsOpen
DMS. We had bought the software in 1998 and upgraded it three
times since then. However, about three years prior, the text search
had stopped working. My firm poured many hours and about $10,000
into fixing the indexer and search capabilities of the software, but to
no avail—the DMS was deemed unfixable.
As the Personnel Manager of the firm, it was my responsibility to
research alternatives for a new DMS, while also looking into other
ways to help modernize our approach to remote access, storage use
and security standards. We had old equipment, and a tornado in 2007
had opened my eyes to the need for disaster recovery provisions. I
worked closely with our IT consultant, Chris McLelland, when
weighing all options for our specific needs.
There were many unique elements to consider when we surveyed the
scope of a DMS conversion. We had 760,000 documents that had to be
migrated, indexed and re-profiled efficiently. In addition, we were
using WordPerfect for as our word processor and did not want to
make the switch to Word. We needed a system that would integrate
with and support our firm’s existing infrastructure.
Another issue was that our indexer had stopped functioning a number
of years ago. Our staff had been saving documents to a single folder
that swelled to contain 80,000 documents with all the same client,
matter and document type information. In order for migration to be
successful, these documents needed to be intelligently organized in
In the course of my due diligence, I looked at Worldox® from World
Software Corporation® and spoke with Ion Resources, a Texas-based
reseller that sold and installed their DMS. Initially, I had met Ion’s co-
founder Don Lee at an ALA meeting and began speaking with him in-
depth about the possibilities of implementing Worldox at LS&G. I also
discussed our firm’s unique needs with him, and he had a number of
solutions to our problems. In addition to the Worldox DMS, we also
considered its add-on, Worldox/Web Mobile, which allowed our users
to have remote access to documents from any Internet connection.
Worldox had all of the features and integrations we were looking for,
including support for WordPerfect documents. Don sent me a price
quote for Worldox and it was the most affordable option by far. Most
quotes were between $30,000-90,000 more than the Worldox figure.
Worldox was a great product that was very efficient and well-priced.
It integrated with everything we needed it to, including WordPerfect
and our Omega time and billing software. I presented this information
to the firm’s executive committee of 5 attorneys, and they agreed
that Worldox was the best DMS solution, as well as the most cost-
effective. We bought 31 Worldox licenses and the Worldox Omega
Connector in November 2012 and purchased 5 Worldox/Web Mobile
licenses in December.
Even before purchasing Worldox, LS&G had begun discussing
requirements and design with the team at Ion. Three initial pilot runs
were done within a week to ensure a smooth transition. Our first pilot
was a test with a small subset of the documents from a single
client/matter. Then Ion did two pilot runs with the entire data set.
The final and actual migration run began on January 11, 2013.
In order to convert the Docs Open profiles to Worldox profiles, Jeff
Taylor, Ion’s lead software developer and Worldox project manager,
used Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio to create SQL queries
to bring over the data for our 760,000 documents and profile data
faster. For the folder with 80,000 documents, Jeff used creative
techniques to divide the directory into smaller groups of documents,
so that the files and profiles would download to the Worldox system
more quickly. All the metadata and profile information was brought
over to Worldox, including the versioning. Jeff also worked closely
with Rob Nagy, Professional Services Manager at Worldox, to solve any
small complexities that arose.
We initially were using an old Novell server, but since it was at risk of
crashing due to the machine’s age, we replaced it with a new server.
Our firm now uses a virtual server running VMware to house Worldox,
the documents and also the indexer.
To integrate existing products with Worldox, we used a variety of
resources. Since our firm was using a very old version of Omega
Software for time/billing, we worked closely with Tom Price of
Entergel, a Worldox reseller who writes integration connectors with
Worldox. Tom wrote unique programs to help create the integration.
Tom worked with Jeff Taylor to develop custom tweaks enabling
Worldox to work with existing software and to ensure that the
integration process went smoothly. Ion Resources also implemented
Symphony Suite from Trumpet, Inc. to streamline the process of
scanning, filing and OCRing documents into Worldox.
The migration was a very ambitious project and it required a very
organized approach to get the job done. Despite the firm’s
complexities, everyone worked well together throughout the
transition. Once all the documents were moved over to Worldox, our
firm felt confident and secure with our new DMS and it was clear that
we made this transition at the right time for our firm. LS&G decided
to wait until after the holidays to finally cut over to the Worldox DMS.
Our “live” date was January 14, 2013 and we also did our end-user
training that day and the following day.
Attorneys received two hours of training and administrative staff had
half-day sessions. Since they had previously worked with document
management systems, there was a less of a learning curve. There
were a few new Worldox features that individual staff members
needed to have explained, but any minor difficulties were a matter of
getting used to the product. The technology overall worked really
We received positive feedback from everyone at LS&G about the
system. Worldox is a great product and one of the greatest assets of
the system is that our firm now has a lot of flexibility. Attorneys can
securely work remotely and access documents from mobile devices. It
was a pleasure for us to work with Ion Resources, Ltd., Entergel, and
Worldox during the entire process. Installing Worldox was truly a step
in the right direction in terms of our staff and attorneys embracing
new technologies. This new approach has positively enhanced our
firm’s operations. In a few short weeks, we took an old, antiquated
system and transformed it into a modern, efficient system that
everybody uses and likes.