Lexis® Visualfiles™ MatterEstimating Accelerator

Visualfiles Accelerators give you ready-to-go (but fully customisable) templates for commonly required functions, so you don’t have to build them from scratch.

This Accelerator, for creating estimates of work to be done, can be added to any Visualfiles application, and lets you track actual time and cost against the estimate as the work progresses.

Understand and improve profitability

Using the insight that the estimation add-in gives you about how actual costs compare with estimated costs, you can:

  • Adjust ways of working to improve profitability: for example, by ensuring that senior members of staff don’t do work that less expensive juniors can do.
  • Clearly understand if you’re habitually writing off work, and to what extent, so as to make informed decisions about how to charge clients in future.
  • Estimate more accurately to:
    • Achieve expected margins.
    • Reduce payment delays (because clients are more likely to pay on time when the final bill matches what they have been led to expect).
  • Spot scope creep as it happens, so you can decide in good time whether to raise the issue with the client and adjust the price for the work accordingly.
  • Track the cost of pursuing work by creating a ‘prospect’ file when bidding for work, attaching an estimate to the prospect, then tracking time spent to win (or lose) the work.

Save time without losing flexibility

While the estimation add-in lets you build an estimate from scratch - defining process phases, and constituent steps for each phase, as you go - you can also:

  • Use an existing completed Visualfiles History to create an estimate matching every step of the process.
  • Export an existing estimate as a template (stored in an external template library or in Visualfiles against a project entity), so it can be re-used for similar types of work.
  • Have Visualfiles automatically attach a specific estimate template to a matter/case/project/item, whenever the relevant type of file is created. Or leave it to individual users to import estimate templates manually.
  • Adapt a template for a new piece of work, for example by:
    • Removing or adding steps or phases.
    • Changing the number of hours or charge rate (for time-based billing), or the base charge (for fixed-fee billing) for any step.
    • Using the built-in staff selector screen to assign specific staff members to specific steps (so as to use their charge-out rates for the estimate).
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Tags: Visualfiles