This will be the first of a multi-part blog around ERP’s and Cloud Adoption in the #LegalTech market as major vendors have announced their Cloud adoption and the paths moving forward.

Many of you know me as the engineer who came onsite for a week and performed your complete CMS / Aderant implementation and taught the IT team how to take of the Servers and the complete package.

For those of you who don’t know me, I will share a little of my background so you can understand why I bring value to this conversation. First, as an engineer who has worked for CMS Data / Solution6 and the journey with Aderant clients using CMS Open Classic and now Aderant Expert since nearly the beginning, and who has performed complete implementations for more than 100 Law Firms world-wide, I understand the many challenges along the way.

Second, as a former Director of Technology for a US Law Firm supporting a full featured Aderant Suite and traditional Legal Applications, as well as Technical Consultant for many US and International Firms running Aderant Expert and Classic, I truly understand the many concerns and challenges preserving data integrity for all client systems, while maintaining a production environment with multi-vendor access and support requirements.

Third, I have spent the past decade working for MSP’s extensively with all major Cloud providers to “design, build, implement and support” proper hybrid Cloud infrastructure and intense systems like SAP (10X more resource intensive and works great in hybrid Cloud), with secure environments to meet the most demanding technical and compliance requirements.

These systems were primarily for DoD and Aerospace clients, but also included Law Firms, Banks, Healthcare, and many other verticals that were also very cautious about Cloud adoption and the complete workplace transformation.

I know this journey very well and look forward to having healthy discussions to help wherever I can.

Perhaps my extensive Law Firm experience with the implementation and complete Aderant support, combined with the Cloud expertise obtained from some of the best Cloud Security, IAM, Cybersecurity and compliance experts in the industry over the past decade will help provide meaningful strategy and execution for many of you.

Finally, since I was usually the very first CMS employee onsite with the client after the Sales team sold the CMS / now Aderant solution to the Firm, with high expectations that “Ron would make it work”, and I did as thousands of you can attest, I will share some of the obvious challenges we experienced along the way to help generate these discussions.

In upcoming posts I’ll be discussing the following aspects:

Approval for CapEx expense: Hardware, Software, Licensing for many things, Professional Services, etc…

Approval for OpEx expense: Services, maintenance, support, power bills, subscriptions, …

Resource scheduling: Engineers, Trainers, Project Managers, and a long list of specialists.

Result: Usually a long timeline for an expensive implementation with room for many improvements.

Some of the categories I feel compelled to discuss first are as follows:

·       Common Q & A around Cloud Security versus traditional on-premises with real scenarios using modern workplace transformations and best practices to secure these environments.

·       CapEx investments for on-premises Server Room solutions versus OpEx with MRC (Monthly Recurring Charge) and only paying for what you use on a subscription plan.

·       Lengthy timelines for initial implementation and upgrades due to lack of resources, often requiring the rescheduling for Go Live dates.

·       System dependencies when Applications are migrated to the Cloud and separated from other applications like Aderant with Interaction or iManage for example.

We look forward to many healthy conversations as we all mature with Cloud adoption and secure our environments. Please feel free to reach out and start additional conversations for our community.

Ron Piper

Ron Piper

Technical Consultant