The legal industry runs like any other business, there are regulations to keep up with and countless tasks that can take away from the essential core work an intellectual lawyer needs to spend time on. When most non-corporate law firms only hire around ten full-time employees, how is your network supposed to be fully managed and still generate profit for the firm with excellent client experiences? That’s where outsourcing to a Managed Service Provider can save you valuable billable hours, and protect you in the process.
Managed Service Providers (or MSP’s) are professional IT companies dedicated to managing client’s IT infrastructures as well as providing necessary recommendations on cybersecurity measures and other profit saving solutions. Here are a few of the ways an MSP can help your law firm become an industry leader:
Most law firms are dealing with large amounts of unfiltered data every day. The nature of this information is highly sensitive. This is why there are regulatory compliance requirements in place to help keep your clients’ information safe. But these regulations are constantly changing, making it even more difficult for firms to maintain compliant. An MSP can come in and not only organize and process the data for you with different software systems but make sure everything is up-to-date to stay ahead of frequently changing regulations.
Also, with all your information in one place, you can focus more energy on your actual core tasks instead of looking through hundreds of files for the information you need. The different software systems usually implemented by MSP’s even offer mobile capability, allowing you to access information on-the-go, making you even more productive. You might think a single in-house IT expert can handle this, but law firms require more specialized expertise, like cloud services, telephony, network services, and security-- which goes beyond the scope of a single individual.
The most important task covered by an MSP is cybersecurity- especially in a field containing as much sensitive data as Legal Firms. Such a high volume of sensitive information puts your firm at a higher risk for data breaches. MSP’s work to be proactive against attacks, implementing firewalls and other structured security measures to protect emails and data storage.
Your MSP will also keep all of the software systems your firm uses updated, avoiding annoying crashes and glitches before they can happen. Just think of all the other work you can complete when the systems you are using are all running properly, without any further maintenance from you and your team.
Which brings us to the biggest advantage an MSP can give you-- more time. No more stopping in the middle of an important briefing to struggle to fix the network connection, searching endlessly through files for the one page you need, or stressing with profile data security with your team and the client. You are busy and your time is precious, spend it on the tasks that only you can do, and not on something an outsourced MSP can do for you.
Some MSP’s even offer paralegal services, taking care of filling activities, email drafting, document review, and research services. This results in even more time saved-- and money when you start to compare the cost of hiring multiple paralegals and IT personnel versus one managed service provider.
More Billable Hours
Let’s say you need to log 1,800 billable hours in a year. There are certain things we do every day that can’t be counted as billing hours, like lunch breaks, department meetings, coffee breaks or occasional conferences. In a ten-hour workday, this could result in only 7.5 billable hours. If you tack on IT and Paralegal tasks, you lose even more time. By the end of the year you may end up at less than 1,700 billable hours, and if you’re part of a small firm that amount of lost time could mean serious consequences for your revenue.
Strengthening Bottom Line Revenue
With an MSP on your team, you’ll have less lost hours and therefore more time to do the work your clients can actually pay you for. There are always going to be those non-billable tasks you have to take care of, but when you can outsource your IT and Paralegal work your firm will see an increase in revenue after expenses because every day they were able to log a few more billable hours than before-- without having to put in more overtime.
At the end of the day, your law firm is a business, and time is money. When you are able to maintain productivity, you maintain profit. Managed service providers are generally more cost-effective than hiring internal IT staff. And with your MSP handling all of the IT and paralegal tasks that come with running a law firm, you are free to do the work you love to do-- and do it well.
With a happy team and happy clients, the growth spurred by innovative workflows and efficient operations is going to give your firm the competitive advantage needed to become a leader in your industry.
The work you do is important. When you have more time and money to achieve the goals you originally set out to do, you become an unstoppable force in an ever-changing and growing industry.