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Where to begin with identifying a cloud-based solution for your firm

We’ve been discussing how cloud-based technologies are allowing law firms to successfully operate remotely and the challenges that can arise when it comes to firms actually adopting cloud technology.

One challenge: Their experience with remote access tech is often limited to a few web-based tools. For many firms, making the jump to the cloud can seem like an insurmountable undertaking riddled with unanswered questions. How will our firm figure out which cloud-based platform works best for us? Where do we even begin given the sheer number of options?

One useful starting point is the new white paper from Thomson Reuters, Head for the cloud in a storm: Maintaining your firm’s business continuity during a crisis. Another useful launching pad: Taking a close look at your current tech stack to see if it’s doing the job you need it to do. And here’s a step-by-step strategy to do just that.

Step 1: Audit your firm’s current tech

Start by asking a few basic questions about your current IT set-up:

  • What tools do we use?
  • How well do they address the need for which they were implemented?
  • Are any of them due for an upgrade or possible replacement?
  • Are there any tech gaps that need to be filled? Are there any manual tasks we’re performing that could be automated?

Step 2: Determine what tools require remote access

Perhaps the most important question to ask is this: Are there any of these tools that can’t be accessed remotely? If so, which ones should be?

You can start to answer that question by organizing your firm’s current toolbox into three categories:

  • Essential: These are the technologies that you and your team absolutely need in order to get critical tasks done.
  • Important: These technologies handle crucial tasks, but those tasks could be accomplished using other tools and approaches.
  • Nice to have: These are tools where remote accessibility would be helpful, but your firm’s work wouldn’t suffer without them.

Step 3: Know what you need, and what you can get

Once you’ve determined what tools are the most important to your firm’s operations, then you can research whether any cloud-based versions are available. This would also be a good time to look for any empty slots in your firm’s tech toolbox. Are there critical tasks still being performed manually? Is there a cloud-based solution that could automate them?

Step 4: Consider a new platform

The next questions to address: Could all of these tools operate within a single cloud-based platform? And could that platform allow your firm to streamline its entire IT function?

One such platform that has been developed specifically for the legal profession is 3E Cloud from Thomson Reuters. 3E Cloud allows attorneys and support staff to access tools and data whenever they need them and wherever they’re working. It provides the kind of cybersecurity that all businesses need, and it can scale up as a firm’s headcount and data requirements grow. In addition, 3E Cloud incorporates financial management technology that’s been built specifically for large and midsize law firms.

Can a move to the cloud help your firm?

If a platform like 3E Cloud might be the kind of tech that would make your firm more efficient, request a free demo of 3E Cloud or contact a Thomson Reuters representative and take a test drive. Your practice might well see the advantages of cloud computing even after the pandemic lifts and your office reopens. To learn more about those benefits, download Thomson Reuters’ white paper on making the case for adopting the cloud at your firm.

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