Aderant launches Spotlight Analytics: business intelligence that “anyone can use”

Legal software provider Aderant has unveiled the “next generation” of business intelligence software, Aderant Spotlight Analytics, which it says offers an entirely new user interface based on easy-to-use configurable screen tiles that anyone can use.

In its comment below, the Atlanta-headquartered company, which was recently acquired by Roper Technologies, explains in some detail why it believes the new solution means business intelligence is now more accessible, even to the non-technical. In a press release Aderant’s product manager Derek Schutz said: “Our design goal was to enable anyone at the firm to use BI. In the past, only a few highly technical individuals within the firm could use BI tools. Spotlight enables non-technical staff to use and leverage the power of business intelligence technology.”

Enhance overall firm performance with comprehensive business intelligence software

The practice of law is undergoing dynamic changes. With expanding global markets, rising expenses and more demanding, cost-sensitive clients, law firms are facing an increasingly competitive business environment. These new challenges are putting tremendous pressure on firms’ bottom lines like never before. Business intelligence (BI) tools can provide firms the ability to access, analyze and act on valuable performance information, giving them a significant competitive advantage and improving overall profitability. However, too often, BI tools are not designed with the correct audience in mind, are too rigid or are only partial solutions.

Aderant Spotlight Analytics with Impact Technology is a comprehensive BI application providing decision makers with access to key actionable intelligence, enabling far greater adoption, deeper analysis and, most importantly, immediate corrective action. Firm leaders and business analysts can be more efficient at evaluating firm strategy and tactics, improving the firm’s overall financial well-being.

Actionable data and robust reporting for improved operations

Spotlight delivers easily consumable, relevant and actionable intelligence to professionals in a personalizable format. From data warehouses, ETLs (Extract, Transform and Load) and OLAP cubes to time and billing, profitability and GL information, Spotlight illuminates the metrics key to your firm’s success.

With Spotlight, timekeepers, finance team members and other staff can better perform their day-to-day jobs and answer specific questions and inquiries faster than ever before. Spotlight’s customizable views of operational, financial and other essential practice management information is presented in an interactive, bite-sized format. The user experience has been developed with professionals in mind, allowing them to get in, get what they need and get out, which saves valuable time. By utilizing the various lenses in which legal professionals view themselves (working, billing, responsible) and easily toggling between them, Spotlight allows for a full view of an individual or groups business.

Spotlight additionally allows partners, practice group leaders and other senior law firm staff to benchmark themselves on targets, budgets or previous performance, as well as provide suggested areas of improvement using Impact Technology. Combining robust business intelligence capabilities with a full-featured business planning and profitability analysis tool, Spotlight can track more than 200 pre- defined performance and management metrics across the firm, partners, practice groups, timekeepers and more.

A configurable hierarchy structure allows users to intuitively navigate data and easily view or analyze information across multiple dimensions. Used in conjunction with IBM Cognos, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Report Builder or any OLAP viewer, Spotlight provides a firm’s financial analysts and power users with insightful data analysis, ad hoc reporting and inquiry capabilities.

Shining a light on improvement opportunities

Spotlight not only highlights where to look and which areas might need improvement, but also suggests specific steps to take. Users can drill down into various data sources for more information or to take immediate corrective action using Aderant’s Impact Technology.

Spotlight includes role-based content views, customization tools and a reporting platform that enables delivery of critical business information to any end-user.

Taking user experience to a new level, Spotlight delivers personalizable views of performance, profitability and GL information that lead to action—a much more efficient approach than forcing firms to distribute voluminous reports to partners and other key firm personnel. Best practices, KPIs and clear metrics provide users with immediate insight into key areas without requiring them to sift through multiple reports or access multiple applications. Users can drill down, rotate data views, change filters and even personalize their view to uncover hidden details, leading to improved performance.

Highly customizable

Spotlight provides a fully personalizable platform with easy-to-use tools. Firms can easily modify and extend the application’s data warehouse and OLAP cubes, and a user-friendly interface enables professionals to personalize their individual dashboard screens. Using an intuitive, drag-and-drop reporting feature, business analysts can quickly build new dashboard content, improving productivity and allowing the delivery of custom views of information without the need for complex training and development.

Tiles within Spotlight are built using IBM Cognos which is an industry leading BI tool built with the analyst in mind, removing the need to constantly go back to IT for reporting changes. Along with the customization and deployment tools delivered by Spotlight, firms now have access to a fully functional web deployment that provides flexibility in deployment options.


Pre-defined, actionable dashboard for professionals and executives
Easily configurable dashboard components and graphs
Secure integration with Expert On the Go mobile applications and web-based IBM Cognos
Full multi-currency support
Three distinct cubes: Insights (Time & Billing), Profitability and General Ledger (GL)
Single access point to client, matter, financial and other practice management data
Intelligent, user friendly design developed using cutting-edge BI technologies
In-depth ad hoc analysis through IBM Cognos BI Studios, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Report Builder or any OLAP viewer
Drag-and-drop dashboard configuration to meet individual user needs
Automated allocation engine for managing direct and indirect costs
“Boardroom-ready” profitability reports and easy report customization