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Do Law Firms Need IT Services?
YES. Law firms face unique IT challenges, including protecting themselves from ever-increasing cyber threats. Most practices do not have the resources to hire an in-house IT expert to handle the technology responsibilities the firm faces. Here are five indications that signal you probably need managed IT services for your firm.
Frequent downtime. Whether it’s forgotten passwords, server failure, or an app that’s not responding, does your firm have a significant number of instances where users cannot access the data they need?
Apps that run at a snail’s pace. Are you tapping your fingers or heading to the break room to grab a cup of coffee while you wait for an app to do its thing?
Poor integration of LOB apps. Is frustrated a good way to describe how your feel about the way your line-of- business applications interact with standard tools like Microsoft Office Suite, Adobe Creative Cloud, and more?
Systems vulnerability. Is your firm lagging when it comes to IT security measures that protect your client data and case information?
Following a break/fix model. If you have an internal IT person or staff, do they spend more time putting out fires than they do helping your firm get more out of its information technology?
If you can answer yes to even one of these questions, partnering with a managed services provider can relieve you from the inconvenience of IT support so you can focus on running your firm.
To outsource is whereby a company or in this case, a law firm contracts or hires an outside separate company to handle or carry out some of its work or functions. This could be a law firm contracting an IT company to handle its technological matters such as data backup and storage.
Over the four decades, since the explosive growth of law firms began, many of their needs have been outsourced. Legal research has been outsourced to leased databases, and so has more specialized legal research and brief writing.
Common IT functions Law Firms often Request
Computer and Printer repair
Many firms purchase name-brand systems from manufacturers such as Dell, Gateway, or HP with extended warranties. When a system needs to be repaired, the firm either ships it off to the manufacturer or they are repaired on site by a service technician. With an outsourced IT personnel, the maintenance of equipment is made easier and faster.
Substantive Software Systems
Law firms that utilize financial management, document management, or case management systems typically have annual support and maintenance contracts that entitle them to updates and technical support. The law firm usually handles 1st tier support, but beyond user assistance, and technical support that comes from the developer.
Web Design and Development
Websites are becoming more complex with database designs, flash, and JAVA-based scripting. Law firms may choose to outsource their Web design, development, and maintenance.
Data Backup and Storage
Law firms recognize that while computer systems can be replaced, the intellectual property and information stored on the systems cannot be. There are alternatives to backing up your own system in-house. Companies such as EVault, LiveVault, and West provide backup services.