After helping many firms successfully adopt the Rally platform we have gathered a few key tactics that help firms quickly utilize new technology.
Purchasing legaltech software is only half the battle. Too many law firms are learning this lesson the hard way, which results in slow rollouts and mothballs. Implementing a product while changing team habits and culture can be challenging, especially when you’re a team of trained skeptics!
Natasha Shebib, our Director of Customer Success, is helping firms realize their vision for adopting technology and weighs in on the strategies that help our customers find success faster.
These 8 strategies can help you achieve success with any new technology you're looking to adopt at your firm.
With any new technology it takes time before you can start maximizing your return on investment however the company you are working with likely has a plan to get you there as quickly as possible.
Ensure you communicate what your main expectations and goals are for the platform to your new service provider, that way the onboarding team can tailor the implementation process accordingly. It helps when everyone is on the same page about why you purchased the product in the first place.
It’s important to prepare your team to adopt a new piece of technology, especially those co-workers whose day-to-day tasks will see a significant shift.
Involving the team in the implementation process is often a good way to make them feel included in the new decision, and it empowers them to steer the project in a direction that ensures they are receiving the value they need from the project.
Be sure to clearly communicate the reasons you purchased the technology with the team, such as the problems you’re looking to overcome or the goals you would like to achieve.
Typically the vendor will have an implementation strategy in place to help you start realizing all of the benefits any technology has to offer.
We encourage you to work closely with the product's Customer Success team as they have been through the process of new adoption many times and are aware of the common blockers for new users. If a part of their strategy doesn’t make sense to you, or if you typically learn in a particular way, communicate that to them so they can adjust their strategies accordingly.
If there are parts of the implementation process that require you to turn around deliverables, the faster these are turned around the smoother and more efficient the onboarding process will be.
This could be configuring your site to connect with the tool, sending over a sample document, or going through the documentation their support person has emailed.
Though this may feel anti-climatic after an exciting negotiation and closing process, it is critical to keep everything on track.
We often see deliverables continuously get pushed to the bottom of the list as they don’t seem urgent, important, or exciting. But in reality, you have invested money in a product to grow your firm and this early step can cause the biggest delay in achieving results from that new purchase.
While it is important to be mindful that adopting new technology often comes with an adjustment period, try to ensure that you maintain structure throughout the process.
Don't hesitate to put deadlines on accomplishing certain milestones. Customer Success teams can usually help you determine what is realistic and achievable.
In our experience once deadlines or specific goals are set, things move much quicker. There’s something magical about goal setting that ensures important tasks stay off the back-burner.
We find it can be useful to have everyone allocate some time towards implementing technology directly after training sessions. That way, everything is fresh in their minds and it keeps things moving at a steady pace. When you go too long between training and putting the training into practice, it significantly decreases the efficiency of the learning process.
As you start to move out of the implementation phase and check-ins with the service provider become less frequent, don't hesitate to reach out to seek assistance, get more training or even figure out what else you can be doing to make the most of the technology. They are usually prepared with a ton of resources.
We also encourage you to ask your team to provide feedback and share that feedback with the provider. Some providers will be more receptive to your feedback than others, so you can judge if you feel it is being heard or not.
You also want to be mindful of how any frustration or roadblocks you come across are portrayed to your team.
Too much negativity about a new technology can create an overall negative attitude towards it and hinder adoption. If you are experiencing any issues or have concerns, reach out to the Customer Success team, they can help you figure out the best path forward.
Most support teams are eager to help, especially in that critical early adoption phase as they want all of your experiences to be positive and successful, but they can't help if they don't know there is a problem. Encourage your team to reach out to the provider directly if they have any issues.
For all the reasons mentioned above it is important to attend each of the scheduled sessions as a part of the implementation process. If you can't make a meeting do your best to get something scheduled as soon as possible so that you don't lose momentum.
These meetings are critical for early successes, trust us when we say that no support team is setting meetings just for the sake of hitting a quota. These are usually well-planned and impactful.
If you have a scheduled meeting but are completely swamped, consider still joining the call but mention that you really only have 10 minutes or so before you need to get back to your day. Oftentimes a lot can be accomplished in 10 minutes, which is better than no time at all!
Typically technology providers have a few avenues for helping clients learn about new product updates, this could be a blog, newsletter, or company wiki. Ask your account manager or Customer Success rep how you can stay in the loop.
When you do get those updates, take a few minutes to browse and see if any new feature could work for you. After all, you are paying for the technology, so why not make the most of all it has to offer?
If you have questions about how a feature can benefit you or your firm specifically, the Customer Success team should be able to point you in the right direction!
Like incorporating any new habit into your routine, adopting new technology for your firm is tough. It takes courage to try something new, perseverance to keep going, and optimism to see the light at the end of the tunnel. But the payout is big for those who can incorporate a new tool or process, usually seen with improvements in efficiency, communication, and collaboration.
Most lawyers we work with can't imagine going back to their old way of doing things. Imagine, for example, if you couldn't use Word, couldn't manage meetings on a digital calendar, or didn't have access to Google.