The largest legal business to float on the stock market in the UK is rolling out Microsoft Teams and automation technology to its staff, shaking up a sector that has traditionally relied on pen and paper.
DWF is aiming to become one of the most cutting-edge companies in the legal sector by adopting a platform created by cloud specialist Peppermint Technology that uses Microsoft Dynamics 365 and Power Platform.
The move will allow DWF staff to automate some of their case workload, freeing them up to focus on more complex work, particularly in its insurance business. Data management tools in Power Platform will help the company analyse the vast amounts of information they hold to give employees a comprehensive view of their clients.
Linking these programs with Microsoft 365 will mean that information can be securely accessed and shared at any time, from any location and on any device, creating a culture of remote working and collaboration that is rarely seen in the legal sector.
Samantha Charman, Head of Applications and Development at DWF, said: “We had to be brave to step away from proven technology that the legal sector uses, but we had to in order to take DWF forward and give our clients the service they want today. By adopting this system, we are taking case management to the next level and transforming how all our staff work. It’s been easy to implement and easy to use; I can create a PowerApp based on a SharePoint list in a weekend.
“It’s enabled our employees to see a complete picture of their clients and make informed decisions. That’s good for both parties.”
DWF embraced technology before it listed on the London Stock Exchange in March 2019 and has since continued that trend. However, research from PwC in December last year revealed that’s not the case across the sector. The study found that almost 60% of UK law firms have completed or are carrying out projects to introduce new technologies, but capital spend is relatively limited. This is despite 78% of the top 100 law firms saying they were somewhat or extremely concerned about cyber security and around 60% of legal sector employees believing that technology will change their roles in within five years.
DWF is ensuring that its employees are ready for technological change. Around 3,000 DWF staff could eventually have access to the Peppermint platform and supporting tools such as Microsoft Teams.
“Teams is the only product I’ve seen in 20 years that can take the world beyond email,” said Daniel Pollick, Chief Information Officer at DWF. “We can now engage with clients and suppliers directly through Teams, with video calls helping us collaborate and be more transparent. Our technical team are very excited about the future.”
Tony Cox, Chief Sales Officer at Peppermint Technology, said: “DWF is renowned for exceptional levels of service, collaborative working and innovative thinking in providing integrated services to its clients. We are delighted to support DWF in the cost-effective delivery of innovative and easy to use services to its clients in alignment with its strategic goals.”