For the last two years, solicitors at Koninckx-Broekmans have been working with the Philips Pocket Memo voice recorders. The Pocket Memo 8200 dictation recorders are used for dealing with general correspondence. Thanks to this digital dictation technology, the firm of solicitors is able to take advantage of significant time-savings.
Activities at Koninckx & Broekmans can be divided into three general categories: insurance (fire, liability, industrial accidents, damage, serious accidents, etc.); real estate (leasehold, sale and purchase); and banking (receivables for the banks: financial law and commercial law). The firm has five permanent members of secretarial staff and calls upon the services of one secretary working freelance.
The legal firm has been working with dictation machines for more than 30 years, first with larger recording machines and later with devices using micro-cassettes. More recently, the firm switched to using a digital system, which nevertheless had its limitations. Not long since, the firm has been using Philips digital recording equipment.
Johan Koninckx explains the importance of dictation within the legal profession: “Lawyers are not generally fast or efficient typers. For years now, our legal practice has been using dictation solutions. In our office, recording devices are used primarily for general correspondence purposes. In the early period, we would dictate letters on analogue cassette tapes, which a secretary would then type out. The use of tapes was time-consuming and involved additional costs because the tapes would wear out and the sound quality would deteriorate. What’s more, there was always the risk we would misplace them or erase the recordings by mistake.”
It was two years ago that Koninckx & Broekmans first made acquaintance with digital Philips Pocket Memo recording devices. Because the digital dictation machines they were using no longer matched up to their needs, it was decided to buy six new Philips Pocket Memos.
The legal firm receives around 150 letters a day by post or email, which it tries to answer as soon as possible. “We dictate replies to the emails and letters using the Pocket Memo. Once finished, the recorders are connected to the docking station, from where the dictated texts are automatically downloaded and sent directly to the secretarial office or the external secretary. This is extremely practical since it means one doesn’t have to have a physical presence in the office to access dictations. Urgent dictations, such as session reports, can even be e-mailed by the member of staff to the office via a smartphone app. The secretaries can type the dictations much faster than the firm’s associates. This procedure saves a lot of time and helps make sure we can deal with all incoming correspondence on the same day”, Johan Koninckx explains.
In turn, secretarial staff are keen to point out the enormous progress in terms of dictation quality: “The 3D microphone technology of the digital Pocket Memo ensures the very best in sound quality in any recording situation. That makes our job considerably easier when it comes to transcribing dictations. This is also because some solicitors have a tendency to make a print or copy when they dictate. In the past, we would sometimes have to do our level best to hear what was being dictated. It’s so much more straightforward now, as if all the background interference has been filtered out. And as for using the dictation and transcription software, that’s child’s play too.”