Law firm cloud storage: How law firm cloud migration closes technology gaps, streamlines operations, and ensures access to cutting-edge software capabilities

An office worker sits and works on his laptop while his older coworker stands next to him and talks

Pre-pandemic, some law firms were still wary of cloud migration — whether because of concerns about security risks, data privacy, contractual obligations with clients, or losing on-premises control of proprietary information. But fewer than 3 years later, the technology landscape in the legal industry has transformed. The shift to remote and hybrid work driven by COVID-19 drove widespread law firm cloud migration — because without the cloud solutions required to support a dispersed workforce, law firms couldn’t run their businesses.

Consequently, many firms have already embarked on their journeys to the cloud and are currently enjoying the benefits of next-generation software capabilities and features only accessible via cloud-based solutions. Meanwhile, at firms still maintaining on-premises solutions, it’s become increasingly frustrating and expensive to bear the burden of in-house management — while also missing out on cloud-based innovations that confer significant competitive advantage.

Lifting the burden of technical debt

Firms that want to begin their law firm cloud migrations must first reckon with their technical debt — that is, the consequences of their current, suboptimal technology solutions that were originally chosen mainly for ease of deployment, lower cost, or simpler adoption (or all three).

Hidden costs of legacy technology abound. If you’re hosting on-premises servers, you’re absorbing the expense of not only the servers themselves, but also the office space and staffing required to make your stack run properly. At the same time, you’re not benefitting from cyclical automated upgrades or enhanced security controls.

If your firm’s technology stack relies on on-premises legacy systems, your IT staff is also probably struggling to stay ahead of growing, increasingly sophisticated cyber threats. On-premises solutions that are linked to each other can introduce critical vulnerabilities. If — or maybe when — your firm suffers a security breach, the financial, security, and reputational costs will far exceed any savings up to that point.

Updating your firm’s technology stack

If your firm is using a solution that hasn’t been updated for years, the processes and coding behind that solution are likely obsolete. Innovation in the cloud happens quickly and rolls out in structured cycles — but micro services created in the cloud aren’t designed to integrate with the technical infrastructures associated with on-premises solutions. The older your existing software, the less likely new innovations and upgrades will benefit you.

Beyond giving you immediate access to cloud-only features and services, law firm cloud migration facilitates a better experience for your users, with the most current software versions and seamless collaboration across remote office locations. Whereas on-premises solutions require firm-managed manual upgrades — which often get delayed due to conflicting priorities — cloud-based upgrades happen in the cloud, so your software enhancements are predictable and automated.

For many firms, clients are leading the charge for law firm cloud storage: Their own work is already in the cloud, and they know that cloud-based solutions are more secure than on-premises ones, thanks to stringent security protocols and redundancies at cloud data centers.

Simplifying law firm cloud migration

Intapp follows a well-defined process for migrating client workloads to the cloud, based largely on best practices developed from Intapp’s on-going migration programs. To deliver a smooth transition with minimal disruption, we plan projects with a straightforward scope, typically focused on replicating existing feature sets in the cloud to prepare you to enable other areas in the future.

We embed adoption planning into the process to help you increase your users’ overall engagement with key features, and we partner closely with you to define training requirements and develop communications. To stay in sync and on track, we carefully monitor progress against plan to deliver the agreed-upon design — and we make sure you know exactly what to do at every step of the project so there are no surprises or last-minute hiccups.

You can also expect extensive user testing: We’ll help make sure your teams are comfortable with their new cloud system before they start using it. Once you’re live, you’ll get post-go-live assistance, then access to our support team for ongoing business-as-usual support.

Taking advantage of next-generation solutions

For legal operations and finance teams, technology gaps result in revenue leakage, so many firms running older technology aren’t collecting what they’re owed. This pervasive problem in the legal industry originates from a disconnected cycle between time capture, billing, and compliance with outside counsel guidelines.

Intapp Time provides a comprehensive, cloud-based solution that helps law firms optimize timekeeping practices. Combined with Intapp Billstream — a modern, cloud-based automated proforma invoice solution with a built-in compliance assurance layer — your teams can address these billing challenges across the engagement lifecycle, so you can improve your realization rates and accelerate your work-to-collect cycles.

Although on-premises versions of Intapp Time will continue to offer stable performance, material improvements and innovation will be implemented only in the cloud-based version going forward — and Intapp Billstream is only available in the cloud.

Intapp strives to deliver maximum benefit and value to all clients, starting with offering you the best, most current software available. You can look forward to a range of valuable new capabilities that have already been added — with many more to come.

To learn more about Intapp Billstream in the cloud, read the blog and schedule a demo.

Written by:

Devin O'Leary

Practice Group Leader, Operations and Finance

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Chris Gaskin

Migration Program Director

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