Digital dictation delivers cost savings and increased productivity

Digital dictation delivers cost savings and increased productivity

Generally regarded as business risk overt, solicitors only choose to change established practice for new innovation when forced to by market circumstances.

Based in Sevenoaks, Kent, Knocker & Foskett took the opportunity to re-evaluate its dictation procedures because of rising repair costs of tape based systems and a wish to improve efficiency; They chose to install new digital technology that has delivered cost savings and increased productivity.


Heavy dictation users, Knocker & Foskett set out to address three key areas in their practice office system and procedures. Reduce or remove the increasing regular costs of repairing ageing desktop dictation equipment, improve efficiency by providing a central mechanism to allow staff to prioritise work, monitor progress, and cut down on the amount of rework and wastage due to amendments appended to end of tapes.


Knocker & Foskett selected Philips Speech Processing because of its ability to marry key elements of the dictation process with digital technology standardised around the PCs already on employee desks. Initial tests proved the technology and clearly demonstrated that additional benefits were available and it would gain user acceptance.


Upgrading the standard desktop PC confguration for fee earners, each system utilises the Philips SpeechLive Digital Dictation kit. It includes, a SpeechMike 6174, an all-in-one trackball, microphone and speaker as the input device and dictation software to prioritise the work and allows for editing of the recording to either insert or delete sections prior to storing on the central server ready for transcription.

The system allows fee earners to dictate more efficiently, partly by being able to alter what has been dictated without causing confusion and partly by being able to set and alter priorities for each separate piece of dictation. This in turn makes the work of the secretarial staff easier, resulting in greater efficiency.

For secretarial staff, PCs were fitted with digital transcription kit, which provides the familiar foot controls for moving through a dictation recording. Work is delivered to the secretary’s desk from a central prioritised work queue on the company’s server.


The benefits that Knocker & Foskett achieved are clear. The flexibility now in the dictation solution allows for easy transfer of work between secretarial resources at busy periods. The change in working practice has been such a success that during the implementation phase members of staff were requesting installations ahead of schedule.


Choosing Philips Speech Processing as a partner has allowed Knocker & Foskett to implement the new system without serious interruption to business. The system immediately delivered positive results and has lead to a direct improvement in productivity and efficiency.

“The new system has significantly improved our ability to react to customer needs and demands while eliminating costs and the disturbance of repairing our old equipment”John Blench, Practise Manager, Knocker & Foskett

The Philips dealer who has worked with Knocker & Foskett from the very beginning of this project is Newman Business Systems, East Sussex. Newman has provided Knocker & Foskett with the complete Philips SpeechLive digital dictation system, installation and maintenance.



Professional services



  • Dictation support


  • Reduce repair costs on ageing analog desktop dictation units.
  • Improve workflow efficiency and prioritisation.
  • Reduce the number of amendments to documents.
  • Retain years of best practice while utilising new technology.


Success factors

  • Reduced repair costs to zero
  • Efficiency gains: flexible prioritising and work balance.
  • Productivity: 80% of staff switched to digital dictation in 2-3 days.
  • Increased productivity: work throughput increased without additional staffing.
  • Rapid implementation and usability.
  • User-friendliness: staff requesting change, high acceptance. Easy to administer and support.