Following its launch in April 2013 of cloud-based Professional Edition for smaller law firms, BigHand has announced that the software-as-a-service (SaaS) digital dictation solution supports more than 10,000 users across 700 SMEs worldwide, as it now looks towards expanding its cloud offering to larger law firms.

Previously perceived as an enterprise provider predominantly for larger professional services firms and hospitals, BigHand, which in October 2015 appointed former Capita Group Managing Director Ian Churchill as its new CEO,  identified that a cloud-based product could deliver significant value for SME’s that lack in-house server infrastructure.

Smaller firms face a combination of ever-increasing pressure on budgets, a competitive requirement to be just as efficient as larger players, and an often limited in-house IT capability. BigHand Professional, an entry level voice workflow product delivered in the cloud on an annual subscription basis and offering compatibility with any smartphone or hardware, has quickly proved popular with UK and international law firms. Almost exactly a year ago, in December 2014, BigHand launched Profession Edition hosted in Australia, in response to demand for a locally hosted solution for users in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore and across Asia.

Dan Speed, Managing Director of Cloud Services at BigHand said: “While some vendors look to initiate a transition to SaaS by migrating their existing on-premise customers, that did not make sense to us as our enterprise client base was very satisfied and we had some exciting plans for that product line. So we looked for new areas we could grow into and deliver value. While it is pleasing some 700 smaller firms have now come on board, we believe we are just at the start of the expansion of our SaaS business.”

Demand for SaaS is continuing to increase across the legal, property and healthcare sector, including a growing interest among larger law firms.

Lee Prout, Analyst at Megabuyte, which tracks leading international software, IT services and telecoms companies, commented: “Less than three years ago BigHand launched an entry-level cloud product based on satisfying demand they had identified in the small firm space, and now have 25% of all their customer organisations on a SaaS platform. It looks like a good initial approach in order to build expertise, and the next piece of BigHand’s SaaS story now appears to be a growing interest for enterprise cloud solutions from larger law firms.”