Align your success measures to your law firm’s values

Measuring return on investment on new tech should go beyond finances and include how technology can help you deliver on your values, says Nick Orme, CEO at Osprey Approach 

Nick Orme |CEO at Osprey Approach|

What sets you apart from your competitors? What are your team’s core values, which help you deliver a service unlike any other firm?

In LPM Frontiers 2024, 73%  of the law firms surveyed , believe firms already in their geographies pose    the biggest risk to them, and 62% fear competition from   bigger firms, but ultimately, the legal sector is a highly competitive market meaning both talent and clients have plenty of options.

This is why 58% of SMEs are investing heavily in improving the client experience and why 57% have found attracting and retaining talent more challenging in the past 12 months. The pressures of the competition — no matter their size or location — are impacting the future success of firms. With so many options for your clients and employees, there needs to be a clear value proposition to encourage them to choose your firm.

In a recent interview with Simon McCrum, a former managing partner of one of UK’s fastest growing law firms, for the Empower Law Firm Leaders series, he emphasised the importance of having a strong team pulling in the same direction to run a successful modern law firm. “Having loads of people, in their own boats, rowing in different directions doesn’t get anyone far. The power — when all your brilliant people are in the same boat, rowing hard in the same direction — is unstoppable. There’s a transition period you have to go through to get everyone in the same boat, that period is hard, and a lot of firms simply don’t get there.”

So, how do your values and goals align and benefit the team you want to grow and the clients you wish to win? And crucially, how are you measuring the success of your values against the long-term performance of your business?

Measuring ROI on legal tech

Realistically assessing the return on investment (ROI) of new technologies is challenging to 48% of the leaders in the report —  — an alarming figure when 64% of firms state their legal tech spend will increase in 2024 – 2025. To ensure technology is assisting with the top two challenges facing SMEs — retention of clients and employees — it’s important to ensure your ROI measures are aligned with your version of success.

Measuring cost benefits is crucial. When 37% of SMEs see cost management as their top challenge this year against an increased number of firm closures, ensuring a profitable operation is paramount. However, when assessing ROI on tech, there are other business areas it directly impacts on, which can help to represent the total value the investment delivers. These business areas are likely to align with your firm’s values.

Legal technology impacts compliance, the client experience, and employee satisfaction

Risk management was a key driver for cloud adoption for 80% of firms, followed by 58% stating a more productive work experience was their trigger. Most likely, these are the reasons 56% of fimrs are prioritising becoming a digital-first firm over the 12 months. And so, aligning success measures to track, monitor, and review the return of tech investments should also consider the impact on other areas of the business including:

  • Mitigating risk and ensuring compliance
  • Improving employee satisfaction and team collaboration
  • Enhancing the client experience
  • Increasing efficiencies and team productivity
  • Identifying opportunities for growth and improvement
  • Managing cash flow and profitability

Legal tech can provide a future-proof foundation and effective tools for delivering on your values and the promises you make to clients and employees. It enables your team to perform their best and deliver a quality service that helps your firm retain a competitive edge and charge more per case.

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