Point in the right direction?

This month’s LPM magazine features Adrian Jones, Product Director at Tikit and his thoughts on the importance of an integrated technology approach for law firms. 

Twenty years ago Google was formed – a research project that started the technology industry booming. Despite the bursting of the dot-com bubble from 2000-2002, the industry recovered and hasn’t looked back since.

Fast forward to today and the importance of technology is greater than ever, and the pace of change is not slowing. However, as firms evolved their technology stack to meet expanding everyday business needs, a new obstacle surfaced. The rise of the single point solution. The point solution seemed to be fine for a time. But it failed to address other related issues, resulting in a mish-mash of systems designed to fix and address individual problems, but failing to address technology cohesion. It’s not efficient, or even wise under today’s data processing rules, to have to enter and store the same data in multiple systems.

Consider the advantages of the integrated technology stack. It doesn’t just address individual problems, such as wasting time with double entry, but streamlines the entire user experience and lifetime value of the customer transaction. The need for an integrated technology stack is also now expanding in other ways – consider the impact of the statement from the Land Registry‘s chief executive last year when he set out its priorities for a digital transformation of conveyancing, and wanted to explore how to make the process quicker within the profession.

It’s likely you will be using a variety of systems and tools within your firm, as has been a longstanding practice. But the tsunami of applications flooding into the legal market means that using point solutions, which are not tightly integrated with a single database, could cause firms huge issues in controlling and streamlining processes.

In fact, it has the potential to create more work for a firm when everything is factored in, including risk management. One common problem for firms is the CRM system, specifically using the CRM system entirely separately to the practice and case management system. The result? New client data is not identical in both systems, resulting in poor or failed business development attempts down the line. This is just one of myriad potential problems that come from not using a tightly integrated ecosystem of products.

If you’re looking at onboarding new technology in the future, my advice would be to make a quick three-point checklist:

  • If you need to replace your central practice and case management system, make sure you take the time to understand which other best-of-breed products it tightly integrates with.
  • On the other hand, if you’re looking to replace or invest in systems to sit outside your PMS, take the time to understand where that data is stored. My recommendation: have a single data source within your PMS database.
  • If you’re not changing your PMS and need to onboard a specific piece of new technology that doesn’t currently integrate, speak to your PMS vendor. A good PMS vendor will be able to advise on whether an integration is possible at all, whether it is cost effective, and what other firms are using.

The point solution has had its day. Keep up a constructive conversation with your PMS vendor and understand which integrated solutions are available to you now, and which are in the pipeline. It will keep you one step ahead on the innovation curve.

To find out which products are integrated with Tikit P4W, please click here.

Download this month’s full LPM magazine here

Adrian Jones

Adrian Jones

Product Director at Tikit