Human Resources

In the past, decision makers in law firms believed that outsourcing administrative support services could compromise their firm.

More recently, due to growing pressures on profit margins, overextended internal resources, and an increasingly competitive environment, many have had to reassess these concerns.

Intelligent Office UK (IO), the leading support services provider to UK law firms, has been appointed by Stone King to deliver reprographic, mailroom, records, facilities and front of house services at the firm’s Bath, London and Cambridge offices. 

The contract began on 1st January 2019.

Historically, upon realisation of the ability to type faster than one’s secretary, a fee earner’s first thought might have been, “I’ll need to get another secretary!”

Today, fee earners are technologically savvy, they know how to type quickly, send lots of emails, and as a result often elect to forgo using a PA or other document production support for the majority of their communication or correspondence needs. Instead, they do it themselves, which often means taking up time and energy which might be better placed elsewhere.

The way law firms operate has changed substantially over the past decade. The sector has become more competitive, clients even more discerning, and the use of technology is slowly transforming many aspects of legal service delivery, and in some cases automating work that was previously the vanguard of fee earners themselves!

There is immense pressure on the legal sector at the moment. Increasingly, clients expect quicker and easier access to fee earners, more competitive pricing and internally, recruiting and then retaining top talent remains as important to a firm’s ongoing success as ever.

Often the agile working agenda can seem like it’s working against all other demands and leaves firms asking the question: How can we give clients MORE with seemingly LESS resource, time and budget?

We see it in our everyday lives, on the news, in the papers and on ¨the social media.

The practises human race built over time, manufacturing new products and developing our world of consumption have resulted in a dying planet. The culture and habits of the planet’s people have such a dramatic effect on the environment, nature and animals, that there is great reason to doubt a sustainable future.

From bad practises in product disposal to unhealthy processes, over-usage of products to under education of issues.

The role of administrative support is integral within a law firm, even more so now due to the growing demands from clients, but also because the valuable time of fee earners has become steadily more consigned to administration.

Through building a better support function, management teams can help release fee earners from burdensome administration tasks, helping to make them to become more productive.

In order to build better administrative support, you should consider the following:  

According to specialist recruitment agency Clayton Legal, the cost of replacing a staff member reaches into the tens of thousands of pounds. It isn’t only the obvious costs that need to be accounted for; hidden costs caused by the upheaval of someone leaving contribute significantly. Staff turnover and high attrition rates add to this figure and if firms allow turnover rates to creep up, they can find themselves in a cycle of processing leavers and sourcing candidates.

Jess Carey Posted By Jess Carey
from Burlington Media

The services we provide our clients, at face value, are not unique. Services such as front of house, print and mailroom, records management, administrative support, document production, and PA services can be seen on the sites of many law firms, particularly in the UK Top 100 firms.

These are functions that law firms are absolutely capable of delivering themselves. So, why do law firms outsource their secretarial and administrative support functions to us?

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