As we pass the January half-way point we have taken the opportunity to look at some of Select Legal Systems‘ achievements during the past 12 months, and to look at what’s on the horizon for users of LAWFUSION in the coming year.
GROWTH & STABILITY
LAWFUSION has become the system of choice for hundreds of UK law firms and during 2018 Select Legal Systems Limited celebrated 25 years in business. Having implemented a new marketing & sales strategy the company has achieved 100% growth over the last 5 years. In 2013 Select moved to new premises to support their growth plans for ten years. The building is already at full capacity. All current indications suggest that growth will continue.
Select Legal Systems welcomed 32 new law firms as clients in 2018. Team LAWFUSION has also been expanded to further accommodate our growing client base with nine new starters appointed. Mike Craven and Steve Dixon, the co-owners / directors of Select Legal decided it was time to create a new General Manager position to lead Team LAWFUSION. Alex Smales joined the company on 2 January 2019 with a remit to build on the solid foundations already in place. On the same day, qualified lawyer and costs management expert, Danielle Park joined Select as a Quality Assurance Engineer.
As Select begins the New Year they continue to recruit more talent. The company is currently looking for new software developers, a sales executive and a client account manager.
FIFTY SOFTWARE ENHANCEMENTS
Select improve LAWFUSION on a continuous basis, and over 50 substantial software enhancements were released to users during 2018, as well as a number of quiet updates to the legal aid modules, the A2A integration and other integrations to equip LAWFUSION firms with all the latest requirements. It is certainly interesting to reflect back on some of the more prominent enhancements released:
THE LAWFUSION APP
Select Legal completed enhancements to the LAWFUSION App for fee earners using iPads and iPhones whilst out and about away from the office. The app provides access to cases, contacts and diaries 24/7 wherever its users are. Fee earners can progress case actions, time record and review cases and documents whether they are at court, or visiting police stations, prisons or hospitals. It also enables mobile users to add notes and complete customised forms whilst on-the-move.
COSTS MANAGEMENT & LITIGATION CODES (J-Codes)
Select Legal Systems was one of the first legal software houses to launch a costs management module back in 2013 in light of Lord Justice Jackson’s reforms. Since then they have worked closely with litigation firms to develop the module in line with user demand. Some key costs management enhancements were made available during 2018 that have proven very popular with users, for example the module has always enabled the auto production of precedent H, but it was enhanced in 2018 so that users can also produce precedents R & S. Select also added functionality that enables firms to use of litigation codes (born out of the original J-Codes theory) for litigation ‘tasks’ and ‘activities’.
CASE MANAGEMENT OVERHAUL
The case management screens were given a fresh look and feel as well as lots of additional features and benefits, including new panel displays, enhanced customisation, expanding panels, social media links, favourite cases and easier touch-screen operation.
TEAM & RESOURCE DIARY
We added a new Team and Resources diary in 2018 which LAWFUSION users really like. People can now see the diaries of colleagues side by side on their screens, along with resources such as meeting rooms, projectors and other equipment when planning meetings and events. This makes it very easy to compare all attendees and requirements on one screen, rather than having to go in and out of separate diaries, as is often the case with other systems.
THE GDPR MANAGER MODULE
The General Data Protection Regulation was a key milestone for all businesses in May 2018 and, working closely with LAWFUSION users, Team LAWFUSION developed a new GDPR Manager Module as a useful tool to help law firms comply with this important legislation. Select also provided a number of GDPR resources leading up to, and during 2018, including a GDPR white paper for law firms – “Do You Have All Your Ducks In A Row?” and an article on “The Top 7 GDPR Myths” highlighting key points law firms should be aware of.
LAWFUSION’s Fee Earner Billing / Draft Billing functionality was given significant attention by the development team during 2018. It now allows bill generation to be managed in a variety of ways to match the different requirements of individual firms.
EXTENDED MS OFFICE INTEGRATION
The development team also extended its intuitive MS Office Add-In family of tools for LAWFUSION in 2018. This included providing the ability for users to add to cases direct from Excel and PowerPoint. Users can now also add correspondence and documents to a CRM contact and create GDPR requests with attachments direct from Outlook.
The inbuilt help system in LAWFUSION was replaced in 2018 with a new and improved web help system. Over 200 hours of LAWFUSION expertise have gone into generating this to provide a fresh ‘Help’ interface, providing easier accessibility, navigation and searchability for users. This improvement is an ongoing process with every topic scheduled to be revisited regularly for updates, along with the introduction of more video help in line with current expectations and standards for software help.
Select Legal Systems Limited achieved another successful ISO audit as part of their ongoing ISO 27001:2013 Information Security Certification. As a trusted software supplier to the legal profession, Select takes information security management very seriously. The two-day external audit checks the company’s procedures and policies and Select sailed through its August audit with zero non-conformities. The auditor commented that he was incredibly impressed with the company’s security set up, and also with the commitment from our senior management team. The software supplier is ISO 27001 certified at both ‘company’ and ‘datacentre’ level. Select is one of only two legal software suppliers in the whole marketplace currently that have ISO 27001:2013 at both levels.
Select Legal Systems Limited also has the Cyber Essential Badge, the Government-backed cyber security certification designed to safeguard organisations from cyber attacks.
EXCELLENT CLIENT SURVEY RESULTS
Select is committed to providing excellent customer services and carried out a LAWFUSION client survey in September 2018. The company was incredibly pleased with the number of clients taking part, and more importantly with the great feedback received, for example:
– 98% said we provide professional, friendly and timely account management.
– 91% said that calls to LAWFUSION support are always answered promptly and efficiently.
– 90% said LAWFUSION Trainers are professional friendly and helpful.
– 85% said they are highly satisfied with the ROI they have had from LAWFUSION.
As we all start the New Year slightly older and a little wiser, we look ahead to an exciting year for LAWFUSION users. We have a great software development roadmap planned which includes lots of interesting and useful new features and more third-party integrations. Practice Management functionality such as Costs Management, Customer Relationship Management and reliable reporting are likely to be become more important than ever for practices in the year ahead, as is Cyber Security.
The following list provides a flavour of what law firms can expect from LAWFUSION in 2019:
MAKING TAX DIGITAL
Select Legal has invested extensive development time in preparation for the April 2019 ‘Making Tax Digital’ deadline which is on the horizon and has become a recognised HMRC VAT Software Supplier. The LAWFUSION ‘Making Tax Digital’ functionality is being rolled out to users in Q1 2019 which means LAWFUSION users will be able to post VAT returns digitally direct from LAWFUSION following the next software release.
In addition a number of new VAT journal features have been added to the system to make the management of VAT easier for law firms.
LAND REGISTRY BUSINESS GATEWAY
Integration with the HM Land Registry Business Gateway including their electronic document registration service (e-DRS) is well under way. We are expecting to complete this work and around Q2 of 2019. The new functionality will give conveyancing firms an efficient and effective way of accessing the Land Registry’s information services directly from LAWFUSION. It will allow users to auto complete important forms for submission electronically, including the AP1, OC1, OC2, OS1, OS2 and more. Service results will be received back in electronic format directly into LAWFUSION, saving a significant amount of time for conveyancers. The new integration also works with LAWFUSION workflows ensuring applications can be driven and managed easily with the LAWFUSION conveyancing case management modules.
CUSTOMER RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT (CRM)
The LAWFUSION CRM system had a major overhaul that was pilot tested by a number of clients in 2018. These key Client Relationship Management (CRM) enhancements will be rolled out to clients throughout 2019 along with a number of further significant enhancements to the LAWFUSION CRM and marketing module. The changes will allow multiple client leads, enhanced prospect management and conversion, extended communication capture and management, improved contact relationship management, extended contact information, address histories, social media links and an enhanced address searching and management.
MENTAL HEALTH & LITIGATION
Adding to the already extensive range of workflow charts available for the LAWFUSION Case Management system, new workflows for mental health work and litigation are in progress and will be available for LAWFUSION users to adopt and adapt in the early part of 2019.
POCA CLAIM MODULE
A new POCA (Proceeds of Crime Act) module is in development which will make life easier for crime firms completing and managing PL1 claims.
PRECEDENT SELECTION PANEL
A new precedent selection panel will be available within LAWFUSION which will make it even easier to generate documents from within a case, providing intuitive document generation from a precedent with a handy preview feature before selection.
PURCHASE LEDGER ENHANCEMENTS
Enhancements to the purchase ledger and posting requisitions are scheduled making it easier to add electronic copies of documents e.g. scanning and attaching an incoming purchase invoice.
For further information about Select Legal Systems Limited, the LAWFUSION legal practice management software or the company’s plans for 2019 and beyond – please contact Team LAWFUSION on 01482 567601 – who will be there to take your call week days between 9.00 am and 5.30 pm. Outside of these times please use this online enquiry / book a demonstration form at your convenience.