cloud computing

Managed Legal Services in the Cloud

More attorneys and law firms are adopting cloud computing services in order to improve the way they operate as a business, and companies like Abacus Next are stepping up to provide more comprehensive packages that address the needs of the legal industry.

Recent surveys of law firms reveal the positive effect this is having on further technological acceptance by legal professionals, particularly as managed services are created for law firms specifically. In one survey from 2014, research found that 72% of large law firms and 40% of small firms were expecting to utilize cloud services during 2015.

Whether or not these firms made the move to the cloud is of minor importance – what is important, however, is that the majority of attorneys did. To reiterate: attorneys adopted the cloud, mainly due to security offered by managed services like safeguarded unparalleled login security protocols and protection from malware and viruses.

Skepticism, however, hasn’t been the only factor keeping law firms from adopting the cloud. Despite many firms proving the managed services model to be useful in their day-to-day, some worry that turning over their IT department to a third-party provider will cause them to “lose control” of their vital data and information.

This is a common misunderstanding of the nature of cloud computing and, for that matter, managed services in general. As cloud expert Richard Seroter explained in Forbes, “There’s no such thing as a 9-to-5 app anymore. There’s no such thing as a maintenance window anymore, arguably, for even big enterprise applications. Users are in the field force, they’re at home, and they’re accessing their [firm’s] systems. Where can I make that the easiest to do? Probably not by traversing all my corporate firewalls. I should put some of those field-facing applications in a public cloud somewhere. When you offload those data center responsibilities…This will provide the kind of agility that is missing from many [law firms] these days.”

The agility Mr. Seroter speaks of relates directly to a firm’s ability to not only turn over the typical responsibilities associated with having IT infrastructure on-site, but the internal processes that can slow a law office’s efficiency. For law firms, this generally includes IT management, billing, bookkeeping, workflow development, and reporting.

Other reasons for the use of managed services by law firms include:

  • Space: Storing massive amounts of documents, audio, and video files can be problematical for a business that doesn’t specialize in IT. Creating new space is not only costly, but it also isn’t a law firm’s core business.
  • Security: Even the top law firms aren’t using the best and latest in security services for their IT department. Cloud and managed service providers are simply required to make this part of their core offerings in order to stay in business and remain competitive.
  • Support & Accessibility: With 24/7 support offered on cloud and managed services, one can access their files or check managed services anytime, from any device, and anywhere. So feel free to go ahead and work from home or on the road.
  • Speed: Updates to serves or in development departments are able to be rolled out fast. This means new services can be introduced that continue to address law-specific needs and add to a company’s suite of managed services.

Your firm can experience a total streamlining of your organization and a hands-off approach to routine office tasks while you grow your organization and increase your efficiency. Contact Abacus to get a quick breakdown of the managed services we offer beyond our case automation software and private cloud.

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