User permissions determine who in your organization can see into the various portions of your technology. There is a dance that each organization will perform in order to strike the balance between ensuring each team member has the access they need to be able to successfully complete their work, and ensuring that secure/sensitive materials are not visible to the wrong team members.


Access to Work
When setting user permissions in your technology, it’s critical to ensure that each user has access to the work they are to perform. In CLM, Matter Management, or Project Management solutions, this means they need to be able to see and work on the tickets that are related to their role. Perhaps they need only see what’s assigned to them, but if you are working collaboratively, they may need access to their whole team’s workload so that they can successfully collaborate and cover when others are out. Being able to see similar tickets also gives your team members important historical data to compare their projects to. Being able to see how something was done in the past can inform your team to make consistent decisions.


Access to Historical Documents
Not only do you want your team to have access to their work so they can accomplish their assignments, but you also need to consider permissions for documents. Do they have access to the full server? Are certain files locked/hidden? Do you store your information on the cloud – how to you navigate permissions in the metadata? For CLM solutions that include document storage, do you want your sales team to be able to view executed contracts? Permissions should be considered both for the work being done and the work that has already been done.


Secure Sensitive Materials
Especially when if comes to legal teams, there is some information you want to keep in a tight user permissions group. There are a couple of ways that you can navigate varying levels of sensitive data, and setting a strategy for this at the beginning of your technology implementation will make sure it stays secure.

Determining levels of access may be the most important decisions when it comes to legal operations tools. A few important elements to consider:

  • Can a person see the matter?
  • Can a person see the collaborative conversation related to the matter?
  • Should you limit some collaborative comments to an even smaller group of privileged users?
  • Can a person see and edit the matter? Add new attachments and make edits to the attachments, dates, or terms?
  • Can a person only see what’s been executed?

All of these options are possible for a single matter. Perhaps you want a sales team member to see the matter and stage it’s in, but no conversation or information related to that matter, while the entire legal team has access to the matter, and only the GC team has access to specific privileged conversations regarding the client. All these user permissions can take place in one single CLM ticket so that you can achieve the nuances critical to keeping your secure information in the right hands.

Brycellyn LaBorde

Brycellyn LaBorde

Operations Manager, Bigfork Technologies