Name: Jere W. Wilson
Location: Hartford, CT
What kind of work were you doing before litigation support found you?
My entire career has been in various aspects of the IT field. After working in the industry as an employee for nine years, I started my own IT consulting company. I did that for 20+ years before finally going to work for one of my clients, a large regional law firm.
How did you get the opportunity to join the litigation support community?
After coming on board as an IT employee for one of my law firm clients, I quickly found myself spending 25-30% of my time doing something new called litigation support – and it wasn’t even part of my job description!
When did you realize that this career would be a good fit for you?
I quickly fell in love with the tasks associated with “litigation support”, but since it wasn’t part of my job description, I quickly analyzed what other law firms were doing with litigation support and realized that other firms our size had already created dedicated litigation support jobs and even entire lit support departments. So, I recommended to my boss that we create a new job position called Litigation Support Analyst which became a reality 6 months later. Because I am more of a generalist, with knowledge in other practice areas besides litigation, I chose not to apply for the new position. However, after our original hire left in 10 months to go find more money somewhere else (there was a lot of that going on back then!), I found the work load back in my lap again, except it was now taking 70-80% of my time! Again, I chose not to apply, but made sure we hired someone from within that was going to stick it out. I was then instrumental in getting a second lit support position created and staffed in 2008. Soon thereafter, I was rewarded by being made Practice Support Manager, which includes supervision of our litigation support function.
Do you prefer to be out in front and working with the clients or behind the scenes working with the technologies?
I really do like doing both. As a consultant, I really liked working with my clients and their management to define and implement solutions. However, to be successful at that, as well as at my current job, I’ve always needed to stay hands on with the technology. The technology is such an integral part of the solution and the technology is constantly changing.
Is there an area of litigation support that had a steep learning curve for you?
Yes, though not so much specifically in litigation support, but rather generally, in terms of how to convince attorneys of the importance of litigation support and the need to involve us at the very beginning of a case.
What do you consider to be one of the coolest things about working in litigation support?
Definitely working with all the new technology!
Which types of employers have you had while working in litigation support?
- Law Firm
Litigation Support is a well-paying career. How much has your salary increased since joining the litigation support community?
$30,000 – $40,000
How many years have you been working in Litigation Support?
Care to share any words of encouragement or advice?
You really have to be able to deal with pressure and stress in lit support. You have to know how to work cooperatively with all the players. You have to love technology and you have to be a problem solver. If you have those talents, and you are a goal setter, then you will be able to go anywhere and do anything in this great “new” industry!
Jere W. Wilson | Practice Support Manager | Shipman & Goodwin LLP | firstname.lastname@example.org