Why your IT partner should be a legal specialist

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9 April 2018

Converge TSIt’s a widely known fact among CIO’s that using a cloud infrastructure provider to support their IT strategy is a key component of progression and increased profitability. Gartner recently reported that 80% of CIO’s will migrate to a cloud-based environment within the next few years.

But what should you be looking for when choosing a cloud infrastructure partner? Whilst there are a multitude of companies offering cloud and IT services, more and more firms are opting for a partner with sector-specific specialisms.

Specialist suppliers to the legal sector understand the regulatory environment and the challenges firms encounter, and work in partnership with their clients to align their technology use with their business strategy, delivering robust and compliant solutions that improve productivity, enable flexible working and mitigate risk. They will augment a firm’s existing in-house support team, moving their core IT systems to a high-availability environment where it can be proactively managed and monitored.

Here are some of the benefits of working with a legal specialist…

  1. Sector-specific Application Experience

A specialist will work closely with 3rd party Practice and Case Management software providers such as Thomson Reuters and LexisNexis, harnessing strong relationships with their counterparts to facilitate smooth project delivery. If your IT partner already has a direct relationship established with your software providers, they will have the ability to execute a high proportion of fixes without having to involve you directly, thus reducing your IT Manager feeling they are ‘stuck in the middle’ between the two and having to mediate between both parties.

A specialist will also be familiar with the common issues associated with widely-used legal software and be able to resolve them quickly and expertly. This proves to be invaluable in aiding to resolve potential challenges before firms are impacted.

  1. Tailored Service Delivery

All providers should have quality of service as their primary focus, but by having a specialist working for your firm, you can trust that your IT services are in the hands of dedicated experts. The key to success is finding a partner that understands your systems, processes and objectives and has the ability to roadmap an IT strategy to support your firm’s goals.

It’s not a one-size-fits-all approach. Every firm will have their own specific requirements and your IT partner should be able to offer you numerous layers of on-going management tailored specifically to your needs. Not only will a specialist’s team members understand how their services are intertwined with yours, they will understand the idiosyncrasies of law firms e.g. printing on a Friday afternoon is crucial.

  1. Knowledge of Compliance Requirements

Working with a legal specialist gives you the reassurance that they are experienced in dealing with the specific compliance requirements of law firms, and are familiar with SRA guidelines, Lexcel and more. This is in addition to the non-sector specific, yet just as significant, regulations such as GDPR. Your IT partner should understand and appreciate the plethora of processes legal firms work through on a daily basis in order to provide a tailored service to your firm.

By taking these key factors into consideration, it’s clear to see why your cloud infrastructure provider should be a legal sector specialist.

Over the next two years many firms will be making the transition to new Practice Management software. To help you to manage this project, Converge TS has put together a short guide, taking you through the fundamentals to put together a plan for success. Download it here.

Associate News is provided by Legal Futures Associates.
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