Systems in practice

What is the role of a practice management system in today’s legal business?



Sustained and unpredictable change this year has given legal businesses a clear idea of what technology has to offer – be it efficiency, savings, agility or resilience, among other benefits. On the flipside, operating in crisis mode has exposed critical gaps where digital tools fail to meet business needs – which, in turn, can change from one day to the next as things stand. It’s up to technology to keep up.

This LPM supplement takes a deep dive into practice management systems (PMS) – among the earliest digital tools adopted by the legal sector, and now a fundamental part of any practice. With all that has transformed, what part does a PMS play in law firms today? What part could it be playing under the circumstances? And, given the higher standard being set in the new normal, what do law firms expect from their PMS going forward?

File Republic


Is a PMS by its very nature designed to work in the background? Or is it – much like advanced technology in other industries – due to come out of the shadows as a driver of innovation, growth and resilience? Conversations with those in SME legal reveal a wide range of expectations, with the more demanding side of that spectrum signalling that PMS technology has a long way to go to fulfil its potential.


Access Legal’s newly appointed head of customer success Bishu Solomon Girma helps UK law firms of all shapes and sizes to understand the unique value that a practice management system (PMS) can bring to their firm – beyond the immediate efficiency and productivity gains. She discusses the company’s consultative approach to delivering legal tech solutions, working on the principle that business needs precede a PMS – not the other way around.


The emergence of new legal apps and software have led many firms to rush into investing in technology-led solutions, which can often have a short life span within firms, as they fail to fully adapt to the long-term vision of the legal work they are trying to support. Accesspoint’s commercial director Gary Shaw talks about how digitalising law firms can optimise their PMS, rather than submit to pre-packaged solutions that restrict innovation.


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