Over the last couple of issues we’ve been running stories in the Legal IT Insider newsletter about what will happen to the large law firms BPM/workflow systems market now that the OpenText Metastorm/BPM system is heading into its sunset years. Both Intapp and K2 blackpearl have been suggested as possible contenders – and now we have news to confirm, clarify and possibly disrupt those rumours…

• Starting with Intapp, the company will  tomorrow at ILTA announce the introduction of Intapp Flow – which is described as “a refreshingly straightforward workflow application designed for modern law firm environments.”

Intapp Flow makes it easy for firm business analysts and administrators to create and manage workflows processes via an intuitive web-based interface and a library of templates for common law firm business processes. IT can configure Intapp Flow to connect key business applications and automate steps that would otherwise need to be performed manually by lawyers or staff – without being forced to write complicated scripts, develop custom code, or rely on external vendors. Intapp Flow incorporates Intapp’s widely adopted data integration technology for law firms.

“Intapp Flow delivers workflow that really works – in minutes, not months,” said Mark Bilson, vice president, integration practice, Intapp. “Straightforward, intuitive and designed for use by actual human beings, Intapp Flow finally gives law firms a simple, efficient way to automate business processes.”

Any business process that requires heavy manual intervention is a major inefficiency causing drag, which law firms cannot afford in an increasingly competitive environment. Intapp Flow enables firms to automate workflow for critical business activities that depend on integrating people, process, and information across multiple software systems. Typical use cases include provisioning when lateral hires or staff join (or leave) the firm; configuring workspaces when new matters are created; and executing the administrative requests lawyers make of IT, HR, finance and paralegals.

The first firm to sign up for the new system is Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP, which has selected Intapp Flow to automate user provisioning for new hires.

“Automating the onboarding process for new lawyers and staff should be straightforward, yet many tools on the market are overly complicated and inflexible, and leave a lot to be desired from the user experience point of view. Intapp Flow provides a fresh approach to automating workflow, with an intuitive interface and templates designed specifically for law firms. Better yet, it eliminates the need for manual data entry and system configuration across our business applications, enabling us to reduce inefficiencies and speed the user provisioning process,” said Ivaylo Nikolov, director of information technology, Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP. “Intapp is a first-class vendor that always delivers to a very high standard, and we’re confident that Intapp Flow will be a compelling choice for law firms that want to streamline key business processes.”

“Since launching our business intake and conflicts management application, Intapp Open, a significant number of firms have requested that we make the underlying workflow capabilities available to automate other business processes,” adds Pat Archbold, vice president, risk practice, Intapp. “Intapp Flow provides that functionality and much more, enabling firms to extend Intapp Open or set up processes unrelated to new business acceptance if needed.”

We’ve also got a short video clip here of Intapp president Dan Tacone talking about the new system– but read on because there’s a lot more to this story…

 

 

• Next up we have Stickleback Technologies. Sticklewhat you ask? Stickleback Technologies is a new company which only began trading on 31st March this year (although it has already won seven customers – not all in legal – and clocked up £100k in revenues in its first quarter) that was formed by Mister Metastorm BPM Evangelist himself Jon Summers (as Business Development Director) and Norman Taylor (as Technical Director) to pick up where he left off when he left OpenText.

Currently, what is now the OpenText MBPM (Metastorm BPM) system will not be developed beyond Version 9 and will eventually be replaced by Version 10 (which will based on the OpenText Chordys platform rather than Metastorm). Summers recognised this would be a tipping point for many law firms, with some wanting to migrate from v9 to v10, others wanting to stay on v9 for as long as possible, some wanting to check out the market for alternatives, and others not knowing what to do. Stickleback was therefore created to help these firms through a mixture of upgrade consultancy, data migration and helpdesk/support services.

Interestingly, although Stickleback is an accredited OpenText partner and will be working on Metastorm/Chordys enterprise-level projects, the company will also be offering two alternative products – K2 blackpearl and Microsoft SharePoint WF – particularly for smaller organisations or those looking primarily for departmental solutions. (The company also has K2 and WF accreditation.)

Says Summers “We have the technical capabilities, we have already existing relationships with both vendors and law firms, and we have an unmatchable experience of the BPM sector.” Looks like game-on between Intapp and Stickleback.