Innovative integration with SimplyAgree streamlines attorneys’ workflow: by SeeUnity's CTO, Dan Hunsinger
We’ve recently completed an integration with SimplyAgree, a tool that streamlines the legal signature and closing management process. Closing technology can now be seamlessly integrated into existing attorney workflows to maximize firms’ closing efficiency. While parts of the integration follow a familiar pattern, other parts are unique, so I thought I’d go through how the integration was put together.
Behind the Process
A user starts the process from within the SimplyAgree application, clicking a button indicating they need to retrieve documents from another system such as NetDocuments or iManage. This launches a web page using our Fusion Content Integration product (Fusion) customized for this specific integration. Fusion is a good choice for this type of use case because it’s easy to customize if needed to suit individual customer requirements, and it’s themed, so it tends to blend in well with the existing application’s look and feel. Context information is passed into the Fusion page, so it knows where the document request came from. Fusion serves as the front end for authentication against a system like iManage and as a document selector. Both of these functions work with most of our connectors including iManage, NetDocuments, HighQ, eDOCS, SharePoint, etc. This means documents can potentially be synchronized with SimplyAgree from any of those sources. The document selector typically consists of either perusing a hierarchy (from top level folders for example) or a repository-specific search. Once the user has selected documents to by pulled into SimplyAgree, a rule is created in our Echo Content Synchronization (Echo) product to do the work. As with Fusion, Echo works with most of the SeeUnity connectors, supports multiple rule sets, and supports numerous synchronization options for each one. The Echo rules engine runs as a background process so very large synchronizations can be processed and users aren’t tied up while the process completes.
Utilizing Amazon S3
SimplyAgree uses Amazon’s S3 to store and organize documents. As part of the integration, we added an S3 connector and enabled it within Echo, meaning that we can now synchronize to that repository along with all the others. In this case, Echo synchronizes to the same S3 bucket used by the SimplyAgree customer. It’s an interesting architecture – instead of a proprietary document repository being built into one product or the other, it’s a separate cloud-based shared service that’s used by both SimplyAgree and Echo in a consistent way to provide a seamless document workflow. To close the loop, after the sync has finished a web hook is called to SimplyAgree along with the original context, so that the app can update accordingly for the new documents.
Working Together To Maximize Efficiency
In my opinion, it’s an interesting example of how multiple products can be integrated together fairly quickly, each doing their part without overlap: SimplyAgree is the deal closing app, Fusion for the external system authentication and document selection, Echo for robust synchronization, and S3 for the shared document repository. The end result delivers a seamless and secure workflow for transactional attorneys, equipping them with the tools they prefer to use to remain competitive in today’s legal landscape.