For legal services, the move to the cloud makes sense. It’s an effective and convenient way to store massive amounts of data that can be accessed and shared anytime and from anywhere. And since 96 percent of legal professionals are accessing documents in locations outside of the standard office, it doesn’t make sense for them to always connect back to your datacenter.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: 4 Optimization Tips for Flawless Office 365 Performance 

In particular, SharePoint has quickly become the application of choice for legal services (and frankly many enterprises as well) to store, access and share massive amounts of case-related content, including emails and attachments. According to the ILTA Survey, 52% of law firms have jumped on the SharePoint train for effective and convenient document management.

However, as applications like SharePoint move to the cloud, firms risk losing control over performance and accessibility, which can cause several challenges for your practice.

1. Buh-bye Billable Hours

According to a recent survey from LexisNexis, 40 percent of a law firm’s time is spent on non-billable activities, which can include searching for and accessing documents. Now imagine your legal team wasting valuable time and money as they wait for searches, downloads, and access to files all because SharePoint is not performing optimally. You can guarantee you’re going to have a mob of frustrated and angry lawyers hitting up your helpdesk.

2. Poor Productivity

Forty-five percent of legal professionals have concerns about losing access and control to data when migrating to cloud services. A valid concern when the whole point of SharePoint is to increase collaboration amongst legal teams and to help manage massive amounts of data more efficiently and effectively. But as soon as there is an impact on that content’s accessibility – productivity goes out the window, which not only affects your law firm – but also your clients.

3. Document Security

Clients trust you with personal, financial, and legal information that needs to be kept confidential – most of which is stored in SharePoint to help legal parties collaborate and work more efficiently during a case. However, if users have access to other document sharing apps like Dropbox, iCloud or Google Docs, proprietary information could end up in the wrong hands and jeopardize your case and your client and firm’s reputation.

So how do you help your law firm successfully embrace cloud applications like SharePoint? Here are 3 secrets to improve SharePoint performance:

1. Prioritize –Help limit non-billable hours and unnecessary wait times by giving your critical applications, like SharePoint, priority over less important traffic. Create a policy to guarantee a certain amount of bandwidth for that app to ensure your users can quickly search, access, download and share the client files, docs, emails and case materials they need.

2. Limit – Even though you’ve deployed SharePoint, there is a good chance that some of your users are bypassing corporate policies and opting instead for unsanctioned file sharing applications. Not to mention utilizing various other recreational/personal applications throughout the day. To ensure this traffic doesn’t overwhelm your network and impede the performance of your critical apps you need to limit, or in some cases block, this traffic.

3. Track – One of the biggest concerns from legal professions migrating to cloud applications is security. And your biggest security risk may not come from the outside, but the inside, in the form of current and former partners and employees. It is vital to ensure everyone in your firm only has access to the files and data that are necessary to do their jobs. Detect and track unauthorized applications and devices that may be used to circumnavigate security systems and access confidential information.

Improve SharePoint in 2-minutes

Watch this demo to learn how to ensure flawless SharePoint performance or contact and Exinda Solution Expert for more info.

 

Resources
Data Guardian: Transforming Legal IT
ILTA Technology Survey
LexisNexis Non-billable Hours Survey
ABA Technology Report: Cloud Computing