As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, many businesses and law firms are reviewing their spend and adjusting when possible. Outsourcing technology has become a growing trend in the current environment due to the ways technology solutions help firms save time and expenses by reducing overhead, improving efficiency and ensuring preparedness.
Furthermore, the recent transition of law firms to a remote work model has underscored the importance of IT as an essential component of daily operations. Many firms with limited in-house IT staff struggled to transition smoothly and avoid disruptions. Below are reasons firms should consider outsourcing their IT services to remain well-positioned now and in the future.
Reduce IT and labor costs
Technology is constantly evolving and requires ongoing investments. Costs of ownership include factors such as technology implementation, maintenance and employee training. For law firms, hardware and software alone can cost thousands of dollars per person on an annual basis. There are also often added costs, including salaries and overhead of in-house support staff.
Good IT partners will also review technology contracts to see where they can improve quality and costs, finding opportunities to negotiate a better price or combine contracts with a vendor while maintaining or increasing quality. Technology partners can also buy products on a much larger scale than an individual firm and capture the most competitive pricing.
Instead of expanding an IT department, outsourcing can help handle the monumental increase of tasks with fewer long-term capital investments and staffing requirements. Choosing a technology partner with scalable services allows you to adapt your technology needs as your firm grows.
If success demands singleness of purpose, then a firm will be most successful if its lawyers can focus on law and leave IT to a team of expert technologists. An IT partner will be able to determine the essential technologies for your firm and quickly implement them. Tapping into the experience of technology experts allows attorneys and staff to focus their time and energy on their clients and workload. It also allows firms to invest in technology that can improve client service, such as AI and enhanced audio-visual support for videoconferencing.
Pass client technology audits
Many firms are required to pass technology audits. Law firms that bring client data in-house may struggle to pass SOX, HIPAA, FINRA, HITECH, FDIC, Gramm-Leach-Bliley and others. Failing audits can cost firms clients and billable hours. A technology partner will have the experience and capacity to navigate audits and reduce potential losses.
Firms that have outsourced their technology function and infrastructure have reported improved profit margins while maintaining high-quality telecommunications, computers and servers. That financial success isn’t tied only to the firm’s lawyers. It’s partly a result of back-office decisions to outsource nonlegal functions so staff can focus on the business of law and providing exceptional service to their clients.
The LOGICFORCE Difference
After decades of working with law firms across the country, we’ve found that in addition to reduced IT costs, our clients experience an average of 80% recovery of their master service agreement fees in the first year by using our team’s recommended pricing models and billable rates. We offer scalable solutions tailored to law firms. Our trademarked assessment, Synthesis E-IT Secure® (SEITS ®) maps out a firm’s current technology system — the combination of IT, eDiscovery, cyber security and data management — and helps plan for the future using these powerful technologies.
Bret Babcock is the CFO and COO of LOGICFORCE. He specializes in operational oversight and system coordination of financial products and services.