Luqmani Thompson & Partners is a north London-based immigration practice with particular specialism in private client immigration and human rights matters. The in-depth knowledge and experience of its small team of solicitors is valued by clients who are reassured by expert representative care, and respected by peers who often turn to its lawyers for regulatory compliance advice.
With a commercially orientated group of partners, information technology is accorded prominent focus as an analysis, planning and forecasting business tool, and, from a finance point of view, for accurate, compliant maintenance of chargeable and payable monies.
As part of a firm-wide rethink of business processes, Luqmani Thompson’s IT systems underwent a comprehensive audit. This involved reviewing the incumbent Quill practice management and legal accounts software, as well as competitive systems, to see which most closely matched the criteria of every user type in the practice.
Jawaid Luqmani, Partner at Luqmani Thompson, explains: “We didn’t just want to remain Quill Pinpoint clients out of complacency. After 15 years as a customer, we felt a strong sense of loyalty, but needed to ensure we had the best-fit solution for our business which is why we thoroughly road tested the market. Three competitor system demonstrations and three Quill demonstrations later, we found that Quill was still our preferred supplier. Other solutions had major functionality limitations either from a legal accounts or practice management perspective, whereas Quill came up winning on both fronts”.
Previously using Quill software installed on an in-house server, one of the conclusions of the extensive business review was the value to be gained by switching to cloud working.
“Our fee earners and partners are regularly on the move, working out of the office, attending court or travelling between locations”, continues Jawaid. “Remote desktop access served its purpose but we wanted speedier and easier access by going into the cloud. So we’ve upgraded to the cloud hosted Interactive system. Not only does the latest version contain lots more bells and whistles through additional features, its cloud platform is helping us to cut down on dead time and recover more disbursements.
“Overall, the utility of the product is great. Multiple staff in different parts of the country can look at the same document simultaneously, facilitating negotiation-type discussions”.
Although many legal software suppliers offer cloud solutions, security is a primary concern. This involves security threats faced by cloud providers themselves and those faced by their clients. It’s the supplier’s responsibility to ensure its infrastructure is secure enough to safeguard clients’ data. With proper security measures in force, the firm is able to fulfil its responsibility for data protection compliance to the SRA.
“Some of Quill’s competitors are fairly new entrants to the market”, states Jawaid. “They haven’t been around for 35+ years like Quill. Security would have been a risky issue with a newer, smaller supplier whose own future is insecure, let alone your dataset. In contrast, Quill’s longevity was encouraging. Our compliance officers are happy that our data is heading into the cloud with a company who’s got a long-life history and a huge checklist of security measures in accordance with European standards”.
In his concluding statement, Jawaid compliments the back-up support services and recommends Interactive to prospective users: “The support given by Quill is terrific, especially when compared to competitive suppliers whose services can be described as nothing more than substandard. Computers have a tendency to do strange things and, in these instances, we get on to the Quill technical helpdesk straightaway for instant resolution with no impact upon our own internal resources. By staying with Quill, we have continuity of excellent service provision.
“As far as the product is concerned, I’m tearing my hair out at the thought that we contemplated switching and almost gave up the opportunity of Interactive. It’s a great upgrade and even the least computer literate amongst us are finding it very intuitive. Every pound we’ve invested in technology with Quill has paid off”.