Whether your law firm is pursuing a combination of equals, or the acquisition of a smaller organization, mergers bring tremendous potential opportunity, but also significant risks and challenges to navigate.
Growth through mergers enables firms to more quickly extend their geographical reach, expand their practice and sector expertise, improve their competitive positioning in the market, and achieve new efficiencies in client service.
But achieving those results in practice requires carefully managing multiple risks, operational challenges, and integration hurdles.
InOutsource can help — before, during, and well after your merger officially closes.
As an operational leader, you may be involved in early stage deliberations about possible mergers. We understand the highly sensitive nature of these discussions and our senior consultants are prepared to advise you and/or select members on your team on how to optimize your information systems, data, policies, and processes today to prepare your firm for a merger tomorrow.
For example, cleaning up your conflicts data prior to any merger discussions can be well worth the investment of staff and effort. By eliminating duplicate data elements and closing inactive matters, you can significantly reduce the amount of information that needs to be evaluated when identifying potential conflicts during merger negotiations. Even a task as simple as expanding code schemas requires more coordination than meets the eye. InOutsource will help your firm execute these tasks so that you can focus your energy on meaningful and sustainable growth.
Once a merger has been agreed upon, we will advise you on data integration strategy, including developing an inventory of information assets for one or both parties, and proposing plans or reports for how to efficiently consolidate those assets. We can also work with your IT and operations teams to develop a “Day One” plan defining which systems will be live and accessible to lawyers and staff from both organizations once the merger has officially closed.
Executing a law firm merger or acquisition is a complex undertaking that requires significant evaluation and planning. Starting earlier is always preferred, but we understand that circumstances can vary widely. Our goal is to help you make the most of the information and resources available to you, and we are prepared to adopt an agile approach to meet your changing needs.
We will work with your IT teams to evaluate your IT requirements, analyzing both organizations’ systems and developing an integration plan for Day Two and beyond; this may include a clear plan for user training and addressing key questions such as when and how to move to a single conflicts management system, document management system, or financial/practice management system. We will also help you determine the most favorable order of operations for combining your data and sending it downstream.
We will work with your Risk teams to align New Business Intake policies, processes and systems across both organizations. We will assess and advise how best to structure processes and resources for Conflicts Management to support the combined firm and develop custom reports, such as daily conflicts and new matter reports to reflect key business priorities.
We will work with your teams to develop a unified Information Governance policy defining how to manage all physical and electronic client content throughout the matter lifecycle, including any ethical walls that are required to maintain client confidentiality. This may include strategy development for managing the combined firm’s administrative records. We will also work with your IT team on data strategy and execution, including mapping your data and information flows, and providing advice on how best to import, normalize, and reconcile data as part of the integration process.
We will work with your Finance and Operations teams to develop an action plan to consolidate vendors to reduce duplication while ensuring that the firm remains compliant with client requirements and legal and regulatory obligations. Demonstrating effective cost control within the newly combined firm is a key priority, and InOutsource brings significant experience in expense reduction related to offsite records storage, data protection, shredding services, library and information services, telecommunications, and other technology services.
Mergers also provide firms with a great opportunity to improve how they measure and benchmark business performance. InOutsource offers Data & Analytics Consulting to help develop custom dashboards and data visualizations that can monitor and report on merger integration progress and results.
Advanced analytics can also help shape overall merger strategy, including providing new insight to firm management tasked with defining the best selection criteria for potential merger candidates moving forward.
We understand that no two firms are the same, which means that no two mergers are alike, so we offer a flexible, tailored approach that adapts to your requirements as they evolve. Our consultants are committed to working closely with you to identify the factors critical for your success.
We are uniquely qualified to provide you and your firm with the resources you need to assist with execution. Our experts include senior business operations consultants, IT strategists, Certified Records Managers (CRMs), technology experts, experienced law firm administrators and skilled project management and implementation specialists.
Most importantly, we understand that while mergers and acquisitions are exciting they also introduce people, culture, and communication issues that can have a direct impact on operational integration. Our team leads are committed to handling the change management issues unique to integration projects with sensitivity, pragmatism, and respect.