All About Analytics: How Legal Software Can Help You Look Back and Move Forward

effectiveness of legal software

Legal analytics is an important feature when selecting the right software for your legal team. At the start of every new year, legal managers are looking to answer important questions like “Where was I last year?” and “Where am I going this year?” With the right legal technology and analytics capabilities in place, managers can answer questions like these and more. 

What is Legal Analytics?

Legal analytics is the process of utilizing data to make decisions on topics that affect in-house legal teams and legal departments, such as resource management, matter forecasting and legal strategy. 

How Legal Software Analytics Can Help You Make Informed Decisions

Legal case management software tracks all your key qualitative and quantitative data in a single location, giving you the ability to run reports at any time. With easy access to data and the ability to quickly understand it, managers can identify and analyze trends on the fly and observe patterns that help them make better decisions about forecasting, how to allocate resources and improve operations.   

There are numerous analytics reports that legal managers and in-house teams can take advantage of within legal case management software including: 

Trend ReportingExpense Reporting
Budget ReportingTime Reporting
Allocated Resources ReportingRisk Management Reporting

Five Ways Legal Analytics Can Help You Work Smarter, Not Harder 

The adoption of legal analytics tools has taken off in recent years, with approximately 70 percent of law firms taking advantage of them today. There are numerous reasons for the increase in adoption and here are a few of the ways that utilizing legal analytics can benefit your organization specifically: 

  1. Increase client satisfaction and marketing to clients.

Your clients are valuable—and if you are like most legal departments—you want a way to serve them in the most effective way possible. One of the best ways to do this is to utilize the data you have captured about them to uncover trends so you can modify operations if necessary and allocate your resources more responsively. For example, you can run trend reports that uncover information such as: 

  • Average days open per file
  • Open files by cost center, department, division, etc. 
  • Team calendar report
  • Conflict check report
  • Team to-do report 

With this information, you can determine who your clients typically are, what problems they need addressed and how long is the typical cycle for that kind of issue, how many (and types

of) matters and cases you’ve opened and closed, and how many cases your team is currently managing. This can help you uncover where your team is needed most, learn more about what works and what doesn’t, and how to make improvements. These helpful tools can also help with benchmarking against previous years or other departments to see how your team is performing.

  1. Conduct insightful legal research.

Legal research is a standard part of the legal professional’s life, as is the practice of regularly digging through cases to find valuable wisdom. What if this process could be easier? With legal case management software, you can access your entire legal library through built-in document management features, within minutes, from anywhere you are located. This capability, combined with legal analytics, saves you valuable time and effort by giving you access to all of your current and past cases to pull valuable data and insights to inform your approach and strategy. You can search by numerous criteria such as:

  • Case date
  • Location
  • Practice area
  • Number of times a term appears in opinion/case.

Legal analytics provides an easy way to sort through legal cases, pleadings and more to gain the valuable insight and research you are looking for.

  1. Boost productivity among team members.

Legal managers are constantly managing the daily flow of intake and case assignment. Legal analytics streamlines this process by giving managers access to the data they need to make better decisions about resources, promotions and performance issues among team members. A few of the types of reports you can run to better manage people and assignments include: 

Allocating Resources Reporting
Past Due To-do’s by Team
Open To-do’s by Team
Open To-do’s by Team Member
Time Reporting
Time Budgeted vs. Actual
Total Time Per Team/Team Member
Total Time Per Team by Task/Activity 
Total Time Per Team Member by Task/Activity 

Managers can get a glimpse into how much time a professional spends working on a specific case as well as how many cases each individual or team is managing to make more informed decisions about who should be working the incoming cases or projects. These types of reports are invaluable in better managing your team and increasing efficiency and productivity across the department.  

  1. Streamline budgeting and forecasting.

Managers are always looking for ways to simplify the budgeting and forecasting process. Now, you can ditch the spreadsheets and opt for legal case management software that gives you easy access to all your key data and insights from a single dashboard. You no longer have to worry about whether you have the latest spreadsheet or whether changes still need to be made because updates occur in real-time. Here are a few of the budgeting and expenses reports you can access: 

Budget Reporting
Budget by Case
Budget by Vendor
Budget-Expenses by Cost Center

Expense Reporting
Expense Query Report
Expense Summary Report
Expense Detail Report
Expense Amounts Report 
Expenses Budgeted vs. Actual
Expense Update Report
Expenses By Vendor 

Through these reports, what has traditionally been a long and arduous process with budgeting and forecasting no longer has to be. It can actually be a task that your team looks forward to as new insights and improvements are seen from the enhanced efficiency that technology has to offer. 

  1. Better manage risks. 

With the variety of issues and complaints that arise on an almost daily basis, having a system that tracks each one is becoming a necessity in today’s world. Legal case management software is the solution you are looking for to better manage these risks and more. Within a single platform it is now possible to track all of the issues, complaints and conflicts that your team deals with as well as the specific steps taken, team member assigned and outcome. A few standard risk management reports that you can expect to find are: 

  • Complaints Report 
  • Issues Report 
  • Advanced Conflict Search Report

Through legal analytics, you can help your organization or department decrease risks, solve conflicts proactively and reduce complaints—leading to happier clients and legal team members.

Get the Insight You Have Been Looking For With Legal Case Software

Forecasting, budgeting and resource planning are essentials in the legal world. But, without the right data and analytics feeding it, your forecast and planning goals will always fall short. To get the valuable insight you need, you have to select the right legal case management platform. With Legal Files Software, you can turn forecasting into a competitive advantage through a single platform for all your cases and files, real-time access and visibility and the expert analytics tools that you need to make your data work for you. 

Legal Files offers 30+ years of experience supporting organizations across a number of industries. Legal Files gives professionals the legal analytics features, forecasting and budgeting capabilities needed to focus on the bigger picture of increasing client satisfaction, team productivity and overall effectiveness. 

“We are using Legal Files to track and manage email, documents and phone logs. We also use it to track and manage the information we receive through our feedback mechanisms and the learning environment assessments we conduct. Plus, reporting on any of that data is much faster. Legal Files is working great for our department.”

Anitra Squires, a Legal Files Client

University of Manitoba 

Request a demo to learn more about how we help organizations like yours manage what matters to you.