What is a Practice Management System?
A legal practice management system (PMS) is a software used by law firms and legal services businesses, to store accounts, HR, case information and time recordings, to name a few.
A PMS helps law firms manage their practice and provides them with the necessary tools for efficient billing. A practice management system is essential for firms because they provide a central database of all important information.
A time of greatest risk for a law firm is when following a merger or acquisition. Sometimes two or more practices must migrate all of their sensitive practice information into a single, accurate source of truth in their new PMS.
PMS, among other analytics tools, are transforming the legal industry, protecting organizations and optimizing firms for greater cost efficiencies in their practice and processes.
Modern legal practice management systems are becoming more popular among law firms. They provide lawyers the advantage to seamlessly manage their practice and equip them with the necessary tools for efficient billing.
The data delivered can be generated into reports that are beneficial to various stakeholders in the firm including partners, HR personnel, and accountants.
It is important for law firms to keep up with the changes that happen in PMS systems as the industry moves into a new era enabled by technology.
For the most progressive firms, identifying which software best enables them to maximize the efficiency of their service and therefore their earnings in 2022, then migrate and transform their data effectively, will be key to their success.
$39.00 per user/month
Clio is a market-leader in practice management systems for legal practices. Its flexible pricing model and user admin features mean firms incur no penalties for removing licenses.
This PMS includes payment features that allow lawyers and finance members to receive payments directly into clients’ accounts via the secure client portal.
As Clio now comes in the form of a mobile app, lawyers can access the case information they need securely with malware scans running every day.
Document management and tracking of billable hours come with automated features to save money and easily fast-track certain tasks like making arrangements for meetings or other admin work to free up more time for legal professionals to work on cases.
The PMS can be integrated with over 200 other practice management softwares, which makes it a very useful tool for project managers.
2. PracticePanther Legal Software
$39.00 per user/month
Practice Panther Legal Software is a cloud-based legal practice management system compatible with popular operating systems and devices like Mac and PC.
This PMS offers practices features around case management, contact and document management, time tracking, billing, CRM and payment processing.
Lawyers can access and collaborate on key business documents with the PMS syncing this data across multiple devices.
PracticePanther’s integrations include DropBox, PayPal and QuickBooks to avoid major disruption to routine business processes usually conducted in law firms’ existing tech stack.
$143.00 per user/month
For legal practices with a higher spending budget on PMS migration, LEAP is the software of choice.
It has time recording, billing, document automation and trust accounting features, on all devices with the LEAP app, allowing attorneys to access data anywhere.
LEAP’s automation populates fields on case documents with the attorney’s client and case information, error-free. Besides saving time and effort, it also integrates seamlessly with Microsoft Office 365. This makes it a universally-appealing choice for sustained productivity and efficiency.
As a user-friendly cloud solution to legal practice management solutions, this PMS emphasizes the importance in keeping your data filed appropriately so as to avoid compliance risks or breaches under GDPR and avoid any reputational damage.
$83.00 per user/month
ALB is a UK-specific practice management software, supporting law firms of all sizes, to manage documents, finances, projects, client records, billing and reporting with an inbuilt GDPR compliance assurance system.
A client self-service portal is also engineered into the PMS as well as APIs allowing law firms to integrate the practice management software with third-party platforms like Office 365, Dynamics CRM 365 etc.
ALB also advertise their system to organizations outside the legal sector including healthcare and not-for-profit organizations.
5. BQE Core Suite
$29.00 per user/month
The BQE Core Suite has a dedicated software for legal practices, BQE Core Legal. Operations from litigation, corporate, family and tax affairs are all supported through a single platform. Any required integrations with third-party accounting software and cloud storage bases like OneDrive, Google Drive, DropBox, Power BI etc, are all ensured by BQE Core Legal.
Lawyers usually have to spend hours managing time and billing reports. They have to go through the data and then manually calculate the hours spent on each case.
With BQE Core Legal’s intelligent dashboard, lawyers can see a holistic view of their client’s information, billing and time reports in one place. This saves them hours of manual input every day as they don't need to go through different systems to gather all this information.
Therefore, the automated solution utilizes split billing to improve a firm’s overall cash flow.
Supporting Practices During PMS Migration
For law firms’ PMS facing end-of-life, and migrating to one of these practice management systems, data quality underpins everything.
It’s no good having a shiny new PMS if the data residing in it is of poor quality. Law firms may have different taxonomies and folksonomies entered by different practitioners, meaning there is no single source of truth in the data being migrated.
Traditional approaches to solving this problem are simply too time-consuming and employees may miss out on opportunities to generate revenue from other important tasks.
IDS’ Kovenant methodology secures end-to-end data quality assurance.
Our iData software has a suite of solutions including a test data management tool.
Data certainty specialists perform rigorous test data tasks to ensure that a firm’s data is accurate and compliant with the practice’s, local and industry standards. This also ensures customer data is not compromised, free from risk and that the practice doesn’t damage their reputation from a potential breach.
Book a demo with one of our experts, Jonathan, to find out more about how iData can prepare your firm’s data for a PMS migration.