Litigation Shop Finds It ‘MakesSense’ to Outsource Tech Needs

Litigation Shop Finds It ‘MakesSense’ to Outsource Tech Needs
By Thomas Adcock
January 09, 2009

Because he prefers lawyering to being a one-man geek squad, Stephen M. Kramarsky assigned the latter role to a husband-wife team who in turn built a computer network for the 10 attorneys of Dewey Pegno & Kramarsky that functionally rivals legal shops hundreds of times larger.

Mr. Kramarsky’s decision to outsource his litigation boutique’s tech support was something rare in the small-firm universe, according Jennifer and Carl Mazzanti, the proprieters of eMazzanti Technologies of Hoboken, N.J.

“It was a big investment initially to buy our two servers, the [remote] back-up device and software licenses – something on the order of $75,000,” said Mr. Kramarsky, who indulges his geek-side by writing a regular technology column for the Law Journal.

“It was absolutely a tough nut for us to swallow,” he added of the expenditure to get up and running in September 2007. “But I just got sick and tired of visiting everybody’s desk and looking over their computers. I mean, I’m a lawyer. At a certain point, it only makes sense to outsource.”

The services provided by eMazzanti – which cost about $3,500 a month and cover server links to desktops and notebooks, BlackBerry and e-mail needs, technical support, maintenance and security systems – produced a few “hiccups” along the way and still has “bumps” from time to time, Mr. Kramarsky acknowledged.

Nevertheless, he and Ms. Mazzanti said it has advanced the firm in several ways. Dewey Pegno became one of the first 50 customers worldwide to make use of a special Microsoft program whereby any notebook anywhere on the globe can employ codes to “open up a screen that looks and performs exactly like the office desktop monitor,” said Ms. Mazzanti.

Such portability, said Mr. Kramarsky, has become an attractive recruiting tool for the firm.

“We don’t require people to be in the office when a task needs to get done,” he said. “If a task can be done at home, then we do it at home.”

And “disaster recovery” in the event of an individual computer crash, said Ms. Mazzanti, is accomplished by network backups on remote servers.

A crash-proof firm is “helpful for my peace of mind,” said Mr. Kramarsky, who explained that the backup “shadowing” capability guarantees “maybe two hours of lost work – tops.”

In addition, he said, the network has upgraded Dewey Pegno’s security beyond standard client codes. For instance, he said, if a hacker employed by a litigation adversary should attack, “we’re much more able to stop it.”

Conversely, when Mr. Kramarsky or any of his colleagues work on matters in cooperation with non-firm counsel, necessary access to Dewey Pegno computer files can be assigned on a partial basis to outside attorneys. On the other hand, Dewey Pegno partners may block access to their personal files from firm associates.

Mr. Mazzanti said Dewey Pegno opted for a relatively deluxe network service. Other small businesses, he said, have systems with monthly operating costs of $200. And Mr. Kramarsky said a small company could establish a “pretty decent, very serviceable” network for as little as $25,000.

“Overall, it’s been a positive experience,” Mr. Kramarsky said of the outsourcing relationship. “That’s certainly true in terms of productivity gained, especially mine, and in terms of security.”

Carl Mazzanti is Co-Founder and President of eMazzanti Technologies, Microsoft’s four time Partner of the Year and one of the premier IT consulting services for businesses throughout the New York metropolitan area and internationally. Carl and his company manage over 400 active accounts ranging from professional services firms to high-end global retailers.

eMazzanti is all about delivering powerful, efficient outsourced IT services, such as computer network management and troubleshooting, managed print, PCI DSS compliance, green computing, mobile workforce technology, information security, cloud computing, and business continuity and disaster recovery.  

Carl Mazzanti is also a frequent business conference speaker and technology talk show guest and contributor at Microsoft-focused events, including frequent prominent roles at the Microsoft Inspire (Worldwide Partner Conference / WPC).

Carl, a serial Entrepreneur, gives back to the community through Entrepreneur teaching engagements at Georgetown University, the company’s ocean wildlife conservation effort, the Blue Project, and Tree Mazzanti.



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