Think bigger. As McDonnell Solicitors expanded they knew they needed to streamline their systems and be as efficient as possible. Cue Keyhouse.
McDonnell Solicitors is a very progressive general practice law firm with offices in Longford and, more recently, Mullingar.
The middle of a pandemic might seem like a strange time to change your practice management system in order to take your firm to the next level, but that’s exactly what the firm did when they implemented the Keyhouse system.
The firm had been using another practice management system for over seven years, since 2013, when it was first set up. Whilst it was doing an adequate job, McDonnell Solicitors knew there were alternative solutions that had greater functionality and flexibility which would enhance the firm’s productivity and provide a better service to clients.
The key driver was a desire to expand the business. Some research quickly revealed Keyhouse to be one of the best and most popular systems on the market, with a very well respected and impressive client base and associated with large firms.
The Keyhouse system presented an ideal solution to move the firm on to the next level in terms of implementing workflows with automatic document generation to streamline work and enhance productivity.
The implementation and training took place in April and May during the first lockdown and naturally all setup and training had to be carried out remotely online. This required migrating all the existing data, including accounts ledgers, over to Keyhouse. Although all these services were provided remotely, it went off with barely a challenge.
Product wise, the team at McDonnell Solicitors found it to be an extremely intuitive system with an easy on the eye interface, very like Microsoft Office, so there was an instant sense of familiarity which was comforting.
“We chose Keyhouse for the product and the people” said Nicola McDonnell, Managing Partner. “I needed a company I could work with and trust. When I first got in touch with Keyhouse I got the feeling that the company was really professional and that there was a strong emphasis on delivering a high-quality service which would align with our core beliefs. The long-term relationship was important for me, and I felt I could really trust you which was essential”
- The firm has immediately seen increased efficiency, huge time savings in managing email correspondence, a decline in physical paperwork, and more.
- Productivity is up: the case management system and the integration of emails in Microsoft Outlook, coupled with the automatic generation of documents has saved time and effort. The automation features lighten the workload and help free up time making it easier to focus on the core business of practicing law.
- The embedded workflows in the system contain a series of actions, templated precedents and reminders providing a great building block for a firm new to implementing processes. Introducing the workflows has streamlined conveyancing work, helping the solicitors to spend more time with clients, guiding them through the conveyancing process, and less time on repetitive, administrative tasks.
We asked Nicola what the highlights for the firm have been.
“On the product I would have to say (the highlight) is the seamless integration with (Microsoft) Outlook. Searching for documents is also much easier, especially in big litigation files, as is the ease and speed of building briefs. It is also effortless… (to) send the documents out once they are found. Converting a Word document to PDF is nearly automatic and emailing it takes a touch of a button”.
“Invaluable support whilst going live – and it continues to be (so). You can actually contact Keyhouse directly by phone, unlike other suppliers where you have to email your queries in and wait at minimum 24 hours for a response. The support team is friendly and knowledgeable and if they cannot solve your problem there and then, they always come back to you quickly.”
What about plans for the future?
To review work processes across all areas of the firm’s work with a view to implementing workflows to improve efficiencies and ultimately service delivery for the client.
Already in Litigation, the brief builder, which is just one element of the system, has reduced the time required to produce a brief by between 40% and 50%. There are also further savings in terms of printing and postage costs to consider now that briefs can be produced and sent to barristers electronically.Go to Client Stories