- Long document upload, download, and transfer times, which is challenging as attorneys work through cases
- High cost of attorney fees due to long transfer times
- Hybrid, distributed workforce needs accessible, secure, and high-performing apps to perform job duties
- Riverbed® Acceleration solutions
- Riverbed® SteelHead™
- Riverbed® Client Accelerator
- Significant reduction in upload, download, and transfer times
- Less investment in bandwidth and operational fees
- Less complexity in tech infrastructure
Quarles & Brady has provided legal services for over 130 years to some of the largest U.S. companies. Their client list covers a variety of industries–including automotive, banking, and real estate–all serviced by a team of more than 500 attorneys.
In 2022, the firm’s size placed it on The American Lawyer's Am Law 200 annual list of the largest U.S. based legal service providers.
Since 2005, Quarles has relied on Riverbed Acceleration solutions to speed up processes when dealing with clients’ documents and data. And during the global COVID pandemic, the law firm added Riverbed Client Accelerator to accelerate applications and file transfers regardless of location. The implementation of Riverbed Acceleration solutions has helped Quarles cut costs, boost speed in document management, and maintain a nimble and streamlined technology infrastructure.
What Riverbed allows us to do, no matter what application we roll out, is to almost guarantee that document transfer will be more efficient with the Acceleration solutions in place.
Riverbed Acceleration solutions make our end users a lot more efficient across the board.
Facing sluggish document transfer
With over 1,100 users, including 500 attorneys, the Quarles IT infrastructure handles significant amounts of information: the firm’s attorneys share, upload, and download large volumes of client data on a day-to-day basis. The speed of the process is essential to keep costs low while the firm focuses on providing excellent service to clients.
Before working with Riverbed, attorneys at Quarles used a Microsoft file server and Microsoft Exchange to transfer legal documents to and from clients. They also used a document management platform to upload and download files connected to their Outlook accounts. Then, they would select the document from a list, open and download it for clients, and put it back into the system after making any changes.
“Transferring files from file shares, especially in high latency environments, such as our offices in Arizona, was really slow —both when saving them and opening them,” says James Oryszczyn, Director of Security and Network Services at Quarles. These delays put the firm at risk of failing to deliver critical information to clients at the right time.
From minutes to seconds
In 2005, Quarles started the implementation of SteelHead, a Riverbed Acceleration solution that maximizes network performance and mitigates latency, accelerating enterprise applications while realizing more performance and control. The firm wanted to ensure its document management products and email work quicker and more efficiently. The firm needed SteelHead to boost these functions on the Exchange server.
The initial rollout took place in all 10 Quarles offices, and the firm’s engineers worked with Riverbed to get the solution up and running. “We successfully tested out the new solutions on three clients in remote offices first and then rolled it out to our entire team,” says Oryszczyn.
The main benefit Quarles has seen upon implementing the solution was the sheer speed boost in document management, as downloads and uploads went from taking minutes to just seconds. “The speed is much faster now because a lot of the changes are already cached once we download a document. As people started to notice the difference, we got compliments on how efficiently we're able to work,” says Oryszczyn.
A breakthrough during the pandemic
After years of using SteelHead, the biggest test for Quarles was when COVID-19 hit and all firm personnel started working from home. The firm feared a repeat of the same problems they had before implementing SteelHead, when document management was slow due to the various Internet connections attorneys were using. Also, the firm worried about losing the acceleration of those document feeds due to the sudden switch from on-site to remote work.
In November 2021, Quarles adopted Riverbed’s Client Accelerator to extend their acceleration solution to include remote workers and continue to ensure fast and secure applications. It provides acceleration capabilities and enables traffic optimization for distributed workforces, whether they connect from home, a client’s site or locally from an office. According to Oryszczyn, “Riverbed’s Client Accelerator really helped as attorneys noticed a difference not only when downloading the documents but also when opening and closing them, even with email.”
Lower costs and better infrastructure
Increasing the speed via the Riverbed Acceleration solutions also helped the firm cut costs, since it does not need to increase bandwidth and buy larger circuits to allow remote users with a below-par Internet connection to share documents. “This makes our life easier because we can support all these various connections and not have to always discuss the speed. Riverbed Acceleration solutions make our end users a lot more efficient across the board,” shares Oryszczyn.
Quarles saw that Client Accelerator had a bigger effect beyond just speed. As a result of the implementation, the firm’s infrastructure became much less complex: the solution allowed clients to manage their documents on mobile devices regardless of their location, given the new reality of remote work. “What Riverbed allows us to do, no matter what application we roll out, is to almost guarantee that document transfer will be more efficient with the Acceleration solutions in place.”
Quarles is now starting its migration to the cloud, which will empower the firm with the scalability and flexibility it needs to reinforce its position at the forefront of legal services. As the firm makes this move, Riverbed will continue to be a valued partner.
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