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IRIS announce latest deals

IRIS has announced a raft of upgrade deals… Elmhirst Parker LLP – a new firm created as a result of the merger between Parker March and Elmhirst Solicitors – have selected IRIS Law Enterprise for their new case and practice management systems platform. Parker March were longtime IRIS (Videss) Legal Office users, while Elmhirsts ran SOS. The new firm will have 63 staff, including 20+ fee earners. Another longtime Videss site – Ison Harrison, which has over 140 staff – has also announced plans to upgrade to IRIS Law Enterprise.

Two other deals to report are: Dover-based Mowll & Mowll (24 staff & 6 fee earners) is upgrading to IRIS Law Business – the firm is a longtime IRIS (Mountain) Foxpro user. And, Howells in Yorkshire has bought the IRIS Meridian Law Connected RAGFS (Revised Advocates Graduated Fee Scheme) application as a hosted services solution to support its legal aid billing in the post-Carter environment.

13 replies on “IRIS announce latest deals”

A”raft” of upgrades.
In my experience a raft is an uncomfortable way to travel, difficult to steer and full of holes.

Isn't Iris Legal Office (Videss) and Iris Law Enterprise – the very same thing ? ie this PR is announcing a version upgrade of the same product !

Depends where you are – if you are on the raft, you are happy and safe with a life full of possibilities ahead of you. If you are not on the raft, you tend to be drowning, or at best struggling to keep afloat.

That's a bit deep and zen-like for first thing (OK second thing) on a Monday morning.

The press release sums up their problem it would appear. After months of no news we're given the 'raft of upgrades' release i.e. no new business wins for some time.
Whilst they appear to have made some changes leadership wise the industry has seen this as the 4th set of new faces since 2006. By now it would appear that the raft has reached the Titanic moment when the ships designer tells the Captain that despite all press the ship is sinkable and nothing can prevent it.
The talk at Legal IT 2009 from suppliers, press, commentators etc was exactly that i.e. IRIS Legal had passed the Titanic moment and despite what they had tried to do to ‘save the ship’ significant numbers of users where heading for the life rafts. Last year it was Mountain sites and again given the chatter at Legal IT expect to see a 'raft of new business wins' from the competition as the AIM sites start to move. Rumour has it that for the first time also a number of major Videss sites are seriously considering moving. In a way whilst vendors saw this as a great opportunity it brought genuine sadness that a supplier that had such a good reputation 3 years ago had been brought to this stage by continued blunders.
The Legal IT exhibition always throws up gossip etc but again a bit of theme was how despite all the warnings IRIS Legal carried on at full speed towards the icebergs when there had been numerous comments internally & externally, posts etc about how disastrous the last set of leaders strategy was and how out of touch it was with reality.
The Titanic only carried enough lifeboats for 50% of the passengers on her maiden voyage. IRIS Legal looks to be heading for the same fate in that rather than gain new users it would appear that they will be lucky to keep this number.
However, again rumour has it that many of the experienced staff now unofficially accept this is their fate and the business is reluctantly moving to excepting it as well.
In summary rather than look to grow the base through new business wins, as was the strategy in 2006, reality has set in and the new leadership will set about planning for lower reoccurring revenues, licences etc with a corresponding reduction in overheads as the base contracts.

Well guys what can we all thank CSG/IRIS Legal for?
Put simply they created the opportunity for most of the competition to avoid a rather nasty recession by bringing what were a group of happy users to the market as very disgruntled users.

You hit it on the head.
4 years ago we had a good relationship with our supplier generally. Ups and downs but you could rely on people who'd been with the company for many years to get into a dialogue and resolve issues. Now they've all gone and we're left with a feeling like we're the bad relations in the family.
At first we felt we might have been in the right team when CSG made it's acquisitions rather than be stuck with a small independent supplier.
Not so , no coherent strategy, no direction and no vision. Acquisitions motivated for short term shareholder value and bonuses are very bad news for clients and staff. Dare i say it but take a look at the banking industry.

I genuinelly look forward to an IRIS article on here to watch the influx of rubbish from inept salespeople from other providers who are no doubt worried they'll get bought out. I think most are copied and pasted from previous articles as they bring nothing new to the table.

Trying to look at it from a potential purchaser’s point of view I’m not sure your comment makes sense. Yes I’m sure that individuals have their own agenda and competitors will of course post, but in many ways a blog such as this allows the saying ‘no smoke without fire’ to come to the fore. You talk of the influx of rubbish from inept salespeople who are worried they’ll be bought out. If they’re inept I’m not sure IRIS would want to buy their companies anyway.
On a number of occasions it’s not IRIS who have posted an article as their own news has been broken before they appear to have worked out what to do e.g. Ms Murria’s departure, CSG’s and then IRIS’s ill-fated development strategy seminars, Ms Adams departure, the purchase of AlphaLaw, etc etc.
I think the posts have a common thread fundamentally. Whether it’s 3 or 4 changes of leadership or three changes of brand name (e.g. CSG, IRIS AIM, Mountain etc & then IRIS Legal) this can’t be on the basis that everything is going swimmingly well for them. Not even Mr Maxwell could spin that one.

Isn't a “raft” a poor substitute for a lifeboat…..Titanic moments and all?

I am not sure I understand the post about “inept salespeople from other providers”.
The fact is that we have seen (almost) no new business wins and now some upgrade news from Iris and it is reasonable to comment on that.
I don’t have the numbers at my fingertips but let’s assume that Iris have 750 firms whose products are subject to an “End of Life”. These products being all Laserform PMS and CMS (replaced by Legal Business), all Mountain FoxPro PMS and CMS (replaced by Legal Business), All AIM PMS and CMS (replaced predominantly by Legal Enterprise) and All Videss version 9 (being replaced predominantly by Legal Enterprise). I have not included in this list any of the Alphalaw, Opsis or Scottish users as the strategy for them is less clear and there have been no announcements although Simon Meehan’s final statement about “support for three years” in not exactly the ringing endorsements many were looking for.
As I understand it Iris have given about three years for people to upgrade although some of that time has already passed. For the sake of argument though, let’s assume there are still three years to go. Iris will therefore be aiming to upgrade 250 sites a year or 20 plus a month with new business on top of this. With all due respect to the firms mentioned in the most recent press release they are not big firms and one must assume that they are the largest upgrades Iris have done (otherwise why mention them at all). The last Iris new business press release that I recall involved Minster Law in York about a year or so ago. In fairness this was a huge win but we don’t know how the roll out is going there.
The other suppliers with their “inept salespeople” are announcing new business wins in a recession most of them against Iris and Iris in turn hardly mention any business at all.

I know this is a post hijack but has anyone seen the IRIS accounts as published on 11/02/09?

Look at the main news page – its all there in black and, er, red.

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