Up In The Air
Jamie Lawrence, IT support and development facilitator at Grant Saw Solicitors, talks making the leap to the cloud with Accesspoint.
A law firm today needs more than just good advice to survive in the market – clients are demanding transparency, and other pressures from regulators and government authorities continue to keep firms on their toes.
Jamie Lawrence, IT support and development facilitator at Grant Saw Solicitors, says his firm is well aware of the crucial part technology is playing in the legal sector and that’s why it was looking for a way to push its own IT forward.
“By working with Accesspoint we now have a company we can rely on to know about our firm’s products and help us with future technology projects and generate new ideas to better our services.”
Juggling the Cloud
At the start of Grant Saw’s case management project with Tikit, the firm was introduced to Accesspoint through a Tikit user group.
“It was early days for us, which meant that we still had to decide what was the best way forward for our current servers and infrastructure.”
Lawrence says the firm was sceptical about moving to the cloud. “But when we met with Accesspoint it was very clear that working with a legal IT firm, with knowledge of the industry and our systems and applications, would benefit us greatly. They were able to demonstrate developments on top of our CMS project as well as reassure us as to the benefits of using the cloud.”
And the pressure was on – there wasn’t much time to get things done, he says. The firm urgently needed to have the servers up and running in order to keep the business operational and ensure the CMS project wouldn’t fall through.
He says: “We were able to work with Accesspoint in moving our application over to the cloud while at the same time allowing our staff to work on our existing infrastructure.
“This allowed us to work together in testing the cloud setting long before we went live – ultimately ensuring a smooth and stress-free switch to our new cloud environment.”
Not only was the transition to cloud easy, but Accesspoint aided Grant Saw in two big office moves, which involved relocating its Greenwich office to a serviced office next to the O2 Arena and moving its Blackheath office to a larger space down the road. The moves took place one week apart, Lawrence says, so there were many IT considerations to think about.
“Accesspoint was very helpful and worked with me to ensure our new firewalls were secure and that all of the necessary services were moved and updated so users could get straight to work without issue. There was minimal downtime and no stress involved in relocating servers.”
And since completing two moves, he says, the firm looks forward to working with Accesspoint on another smooth office move scheduled before the end of 2018.
Lawrence says that, from a commercial and business process perspective, choosing the systems and IT partners is all about driving efficiencies.
“Costs pressures are increasing all around, so we need to perform more tasks in less time without sacrificing quality of work and customer service. We want systems that are smart and that we could train to be our kind of smart and perform things the way we want them performed,” he says.
Technology today should be able to get information out to people fast and it needs to be focused in order to be effective, he says. “For example, in our line of work, we deal with a lot of external professionals, clients, referrers, work and so on, so there is no one-size-fits-all approach.”
Getting information out to people in a fast and efficient manner is important, but it’s crucial the firm’s security can handle the job, Lawrence adds.
Grant Saw worked with Accesspoint to improve the firm’s firewall security – with the addition of two-factor authentication for safer remote working.
“We moved our applications over to Accesspoint’s new, state-of-the-art servers. This allowed us to manage our applications and user profiles in a much more efficient and secure way.”
Not only that, but Lawrence adds that Accesspoint provided staff with end-user training for their new CMS and gave some recommendations based past experiences with the software.
He says: “They also offer a lot of development work, ranging from case flows to specific reports and features tailored for the users’ needs. From past experiences with other vendors, you often get ‘special treatment’ at the beginning but once you sign up you become just a number, which can become frustrating. Thankfully we haven’t had that experience with Accesspoint.”
“Accesspoint’s customer service has been great so far… Our account managers are always in touch to make sure we are happy.”
Lawrence says the relationship will only continue to grow. The firm already has a day scheduled to meet the managing director and technical directors and to tour Accesspoint’s data centre.
“We’re also looking forward to sitting down with their platform specialists to discuss our ideas and decide what’s next for Grant Saw’s IT.”
Increasing capability and efficiency for the firm will open doors for future growth and, more importantly, will provide improvement to delivering services to clients.