Your Law Firm’s IT Sucks!

Your Law Firm’s IT Sucks!

In News by Adam Porroni

Your Law Firm’s IT Sucks!

I realize the title is provocative, but bear with me, because there is likely some truth to why I say your law firm’s IT sucks.

Now please understand that you’re not alone; most law firms don’t have it right, because they are either overspending or underspending on technology … but they don’t have a clue which it is.

And when I say overspending or underspending on technology, understand that in either case, it’s costing you money, either because you are spending money on things you don’t need (hence, the overspend) or if you are underspending on the technology for your business, it’s costing you in lost productivity and lost efficiency.  Again, either way, it’s costing your firm money.

Let’s look at a few problems that you may have:

  • Your billing and/or time management software is slow or out of date and that creates inefficiencies.
  • Your document management system isn’t efficient or collaborative making working on any documents or contracts difficult for your attorneys and clients
  • Your client and case management systems and processes are inefficient.
  • You lack up to date automation systems and software.
  • Or you have tested your security in the last month or two.

These are just a few of the issues you might face, but any one of them could be causing problems and costing you money.

In the end, it’s all about this:

Making sure your technology is aligned with your law firm and your business goals.  If they are not aligned, it’s the first sign something is wrong.  Having tech that is just “good enough” doesn’t cut won’t support your firm adequately.

What’s the cause?

Let’s look at the underlying problems. The first is that you aren’t measuring or don’t have meaningful metrics in place to know if your technology, your info security, or your tech staff is performing the way you need it to for your firm’s business.  If you aren’t measuring it, then it’s quite difficult understand what it is or isn’t doing for you.

Second, you probably don’t have a plan or strategy for your technology, so things were all implemented in silos, without thought to how they impact your business goals, employees, clients and budget.

What I mean by implemented in silos is, for example, you implanted new software firm wide without assessing how it might impact other technology, workflow or other systems.  Which can lead to the overspend for tech you aren’t using and can also lead to other inefficiencies that can be quite costly.

Third, You don’t have a regular, systematic, ongoing means of evaluating and measuring your tech and security.  If you aren’t looking at this regularly as your business changes, then you will once again not have an understanding of how your tech is performing as you grow.

In this case, you really don’t know where you stand… and that sucks.

What to do?

The first thing to do is stop and assess where you are now to get a clear understanding of what your technology is doing and the current ROI you are getting from it.  As part of that assessment, make sure you have your company’s business goals in front of you so you can see how your technology is supporting those goals or not supporting them.

From there, you will figure out what is working and not working, what needs help and where things are off the rails.  And realize that things being just slightly “off the rails” can have a huge impact.

Next, develop and execute a plan to fix what’s wrong and add the solutions that help you reach your business goals, and that includes training your teams, which is often overlooked.

Then make sure there is ongoing measurement with the KPIs that are meaningful to your firm so you have your finger on the pulse of your tech and get ongoing feedback on your tech infrastructure.

Finally, establish schedule regular checkups, so that you know what needs to change as your firm changes.  Without routinely going through this process, you’ll find yourself back at square one.  This is where most firms fall down.

In the end, this is all this is about reducing risk, and the there are three major risks:

  • The risk of overspending
  • Security risks
  • The risks of not knowing what you don’t know

If you follow the steps outlined above, you minimize your risk and align your tech with your business goals. That is the entire point of this process.

If you want to learn more and explore the issues your firm is facing, let’s schedule a time to speak. A 30-minute call will give us a chance to see if we are a good fit to work together.  You can reach us by contacting us here  or you can reach me on LinkedIn here.

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