“All truths are easy to understand once they are discovered; the point is to discover them.” – Galileo Galilei
Many law firms continue to struggle with multiple sources of information, disconnected databases and inaccurate records, this has an extremely detrimental effect on profits and negatively impacts the service levels they can offer clients. Conversely, by organising their data into a single database held in the cloud law firms give themselves a platform for productivity that cannot be achieved in any other way.
This single source of truth (SSOT) is important, as it means your data and information sources are always up to date, relevant to business decisions and eliminates duplication of work and any version control issues.
With all staff working from one system, data quality improves organically through daily working. It updates automatically without the need for manual verification, which is ideal for firms with remote or hybrid workforces, and with the physical office no longer needing to be the hub of a legal practice, such solutions achieve the best results and make a law firm bankable.With the latest key information always to hand, decision-making can be carried out at an optimum pace and the progress of keeping clients up to date regarding their matters made so much easier.
The advantage of data being held centrally in the cloud is extensive. Valuable information is continually backed up and secured in case of the worst possible scenarios, such as power issues, device theft, floods or fire. When a law firm is impacted in such a way they can quickly retrieve missing information and reinstate systems and ensure business continuity.
Whatever device you use, be it laptop, tablet, or smartphone, you can access data when away from the office as though you were there. Therefore, the traditional office building has become less crucial as it has no bearing on your data and how it’s stored and accessed. Ask yourself this, how do you currently access information when out of the office, is it up to date? Do you waste valuable time re-inputting collated information further down the line? This whole process can be eliminated as you bring the office into the palm of your hand, able to locate and access files easily from wherever you are. You don’t need top of the range technology either, most connected devices will have the capability to access your virtual law firm as the device acts merely a portal to your information and systems the cloud with everything you require safely and securely stored and protected.
Generally, firms with a server who choose not to use the cloud, will need to purchase remote access software to enable hybrid working. Not only can this be significantly more expensive than woring from a true cloud solution but less efficient and add unnecessary complexity in terms of meeting your IT requirements. The reality is the world is more fluid than ever and maintaining a SSOT is no longer as much of a choice as a necessity for a practice to survive and subsequently thrive. The pandemic has accelerated a move to this remote way of working and has forged it into an expected discipline.
It’s a bit like having a pocket law firm that you never leave home without. You remove the danger of being caught out without having the right information to hand. Adopting a single source of the truth eliminates problems and replaces them with the most reliable, accurate and productive way of working. It gives law firms the opportunity to become more streamlined, more cost-efficient and, when the time is right, scale-up with minimum of fuss and disruption to the business.
More than ever clients need assurance, especially since the beginning of the pandemic, the traditional days and hours that firms operate are changing and clients now look to contact their lawyers at any time on any day of the week. The traditional 9-5 working day has gone as the lines of working hours blur. Technology now permits, almost encourages, a more fluid approach to working with improved response rates and accuracy of service as imperative to the client as ever.
Technology has imparted this expectation upon legal professionals through their clients. Those who are unable to immediately draw on their client information when required now risk their reputation, missing out to their competition. A SSOT makes it easier to instantly share updates with your clients on their case at any point that collaboration or sharing is required. All parties can safely and securely access the same single set of data so that consistency and compliance across your law firm is always maintained.
Long gone are the days of bulging paper files. The highest-achieving law firms understand that robust relationships with clients come because of first-class communications, and it is these firms that leverage a SSOT to master their correspondence with clients and offer a market-leading service.
Fully enabling law firms to achieve a single source of truth, LEAP, the legal practice productivity solution, occupies a unique position in the legal software market as it centralises a firm’s practice management and legal accounting systems, document assembly and management as well as many legal publishing assets all in one cloud solution and by bring a law firms client and matter information into one location – a Single Source of Truth – and by leveraging this truth, you provide your firm and clients the absolute trust and outstanding level of service that they deserve.
John Espley is CEO of LEAP UK. LEAP Legal Software has been helping small to mid-sized law firms to become more efficient and profitable, globally, for more than 25 years.
Image via Pixabay.