I started this blog series on the eve of a much anticipated 2019 Formula One season thinking about the elements that make up a successful F1 team. I compared the key factors of F1 strategy to the very similar components needed as a law firm to win with case management. In this final blog I look back over my previous pieces — and at how the 2019 campaign has begun.
After successive Championship wins for Mercedes it was the Ferrari team who emerged from pre-season testing as 2019 favourites. All indications showed that they had a significant performance advantage. We are now three races in to the championship and, surprisingly, Ferrari haven’t been able to convert that pre-season form. It is the Mercedes pairing of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas who have claimed all three wins, topping the rankings by a comfortable margin. What do we learn from this?
- Despite being behind the curve in testing, Mercedes worked incredibly hard over the last few weeks to get the most out of the car they've built for this year. As a team, they are great at making continual incremental improvements to regain their advantage, showing the importance of not resting on your laurels and always looking for small advantages over your competition.
- Mercedes have analysed data from their cars, the tracks and the competition brilliantly to understand where their strategy needs to change. These insights have enabled some excellent decision-making to put their efforts where there is greatest reward.
- Mercedes have been flexible and adaptive as a team — and even when they haven’t been in the best position, they've been able to switch strategy in response to available data and make the most of the chances on offer.
- They have shown great teamwork and communication from fantastic pitstops to delivering changes quickly and on time — supporting each other effectively.
So how you can show Mercedes-like success with your case management system?
Although I've continually acknowledged that, generally, the best driver in the best car has the best chance of winning a F1 race, I've also looked at how a less skilled or experienced driver still has a chance of winning if they're driving the best car, supported by the best team. The same is true of having the best case management system delivered by a great team, which can boost the performance of every lawyer in your firm, from the most senior to the most junior.
Flexibility and responsiveness
I've discussed the thrill of driving a single-seat racer round my local track, while admitting that its limited adjustability would make it hard to drive competitively. Using a rigid vendor-defined process within a case management system can make you feel similarly restricted. On the other hand, a flexible system that's able to accommodate the way each firm or team works, or each lawyer's preferences or experience, can provide the same winning setup as an F1 car that can be tweaked to suit an individual's style of driving.
And just as a F1 car needs to be able to adapt to different tracks and respond to different race conditions to give the driver the best chance of winning, so a case management system should be able to support different practices, changing market conditions and evolving regulations, to maximise the opportunities for business success.
Improving through insight
Whenever a F1 car is on the track — for testing, practice, qualifying or racing — the team collects and analyses data about everything from tyre wear to the effects of different wing profiles. The aim is to optimise performance over the race weekend — or to develop a faster car for future races, as evidenced by the Mercedes team's great start to the year.
A law firm that wants to translate insight into process and practice improvements must do better at analytics than the average case management system allows, with a system that provides flexible, out-of-the-box analytics alongside interoperability with industry-standard BI tools for more advanced work.
Teamwork and communication
To help the lawyers in your firm be the best they can be, they need the same kind of dedicated team around them as a F1 driver has, creating the right environment for them to be successful. As well as in-house personnel, that team will include your case management system provider, where you'll want to find:
- IT development skills combined with real-world experience of the business of law
- The ability to bridge the communication gap between law and technology to ensure ongoing optimisation of the case management system
A winning case management system
We believe that Lexis® Visualfiles™ offers all the features and attributes of a Formula 1-winning case and legal process management system. To find out how Lexis Visualfiles and the team at LexisNexis can help drive your firm's business success, take a lap around www.lexisnexis-es.co.uk/our-solutions/visualfiles/ or pick up the phone to one of the team.