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Preparing for an Alternative future: How Proclaim Case Management Software is helping Nesbit Law Group

An Eclipse Legal Systems Case Study

The full extent to which Alternative Business Structures (ABS) will impact upon the legal services market is as yet unknown. At a time of great uncertainty, one firm is planning confidently for the future – safe in the knowledge that it has the right software systems in place. Nesbit Law Group is an 80-strong, vibrant firm of solicitors dealing with personal injury claims, primarily road traffic accidents (RTA). The firm uses Eclipse’s Proclaim Case Management Software system, allowing fee-earners to turn around cases far quicker than the industry average.

Managing partner Alan Nesbit has experience in both claimant and defendant insurance. Having started the firm in 2003 he now spends his time concentrating on managing and driving the practice forward. Here he explains how he is looking to the future and furthering his firm’s long-standing relationship with Eclipse.

How long have you been using Proclaim?

Since day one!  In my previous firm I was part of a panel tasked with analysing the different Case Management systems available and selecting the most suitable. The universal choice was Eclipse’s Proclaim, so when it came to setting up my own practice it was the obvious option.  It remains an easy to use, powerful and extremely flexible system. The real beauty is how it can be developed as the business evolves.

How has the firm developed during that time?

We’ve grown from a two-person set-up operating out of one office, to the nine location, 80-staff business of today. Our core focus remains personal injury, but commercial litigation and professional negligence work are also areas of interest.  What makes Eclipse stand out from the crowd is the company’s ability to tailor software in line with individual requirements. We speak regularly with Eclipse’s developers who easily incorporate new features to improve efficiency. We’ve changed dramatically and our software has kept up. The result is a system that feels like it has been designed uniquely for our purposes rather than a vanilla, off-the-shelf package.

What are the main benefits of Proclaim?

Due to the competitive nature and fluid status of the personal injury sector, the main benefit is how Proclaim allows us to minimise costs. The system is so straightforward and efficient to use that fee-earners can easily complete a great deal of the work that is traditionally carried out by support staff. It is clear that Proclaim has been developed by people who know what fee-earners want – the result is that across our nine offices we only employ two secretaries!

The second key attribute is that by using Terminal Services I can effectively have a live link into any of the offices, allowing me to maintain a supervisory role across all the branches wherever I am in the world. Combined with the Proclaim Accounts package which allows us to see the ledger on each individual file, it is possible to feel in control of everything that is happening within the organisation.

“When it came to setting up my own practice, Proclaim was the obvious choice.  It remains an easy to use, powerful and extremely flexible system.  The real beauty is how it can be developed as the business evolves.”

Why is it vital to have the right Case Management systems in place?

Nobody knows the full long-term impact of the Legal Services Act, but I am confident that once a business has formulated its plan for the future, using Proclaim will provide every opportunity for success. It is a vital tool that allows us to achieve our aims and goals and we would find it extremely difficult to compete if we didn’t have it in place.

In all areas, but particularly personal injury, there are relentless pressures driving down the costs that we can receive – including those from Jackson, the fixed costs received through the RTA Portal and the proposed ban on referral fees. Utilising the technology at our fingertips to speed up processes and eliminate the need for support staff is more vital now than ever.

Would you recommend Proclaim to others?

I regularly recommend Proclaim to firms of all shapes and sizes. I was young when I started out and people often ask my advice when starting up themselves – my advice to them is always the same: first things first, get yourself Proclaim.

• A PDF copy of this case study can also be downloaded here Nesbit Law Group Case Study