Seeing the Unseen: How Business Intelligence and Analytics Can Increase Profit Margins

Blog post originally shared on Iridium Technology is now part of BigHand. Learn more here.

It doesn’t take a C-suite executive to understand that profit is simply revenue less costs, but it takes great leadership, knowledge, and execution to maximize profits in a law firm. Many turn to cutting expenses as a short-term method for improving financials, but you can’t save your way to long-term prosperity. Most firms try to increase revenue by focusing on billing more hours, but savvy firms recognize that, no matter how many hours their lawyers bill there are some simple tactics for maximizing revenue. Business intelligence and analytics solutions reveal those opportunities to law firm management and help them improve their firm profits.

Limit Hours Posted Late

It’s no secret that many attorneys fail to log their hours immediately after completing an activity. Unfortunately for law firms, delays in recording the time spent working can lead to an incorrect accounting for work done in the past. Business intelligence solutions show law firms when hours are logged late, who logged the late time, and each attorney’s track record for billing in a timely manner.  By making billing activity transparent, law firms can keep their attorneys accountable and capture billable time that might have otherwise been forgotten.

Minimize Late-Billed Hours

How much time goes by before you bill your clients? When clients receive invoices for work done long ago, they often experience sticker shock and feel like the bill was sprung on them. Making sure you don’t wait too long to invoice your clients is an easy way to avoid sticker shock and the need to write off hours to keep your clients happy. BI software from Iridium Technology, now part of BigHand provides law firms with customizable charts showing the amount of billable time that has accumulated without sending an invoice, and can even communicate when thresholds set by your law firm have been exceeded. 

Avoid Lingering Accounts Receivable

Trying to collect on past-due invoices is time-consuming and, sometimes, a lost cause.  Business intelligence tools help law firms monitor invoice payments so that they can have the billing attorneys make collection calls to clients soon after due dates to improve the timeliness of payments. Additionally, business intelligence data can help to identify delinquent clients early on so law firms can cease providing additional services, if necessary, and allocate their resources to more profitable work.

Stay On Top of Budgeted Hours with Business Intelligence and Analytics

Exceeding your clients’ budgets can result in your firm writing off fees and eating the cost. Fortunately, the lawyers in most firms have varying billable rates, which allows law firms to assign client hours to a mix of attorneys to a matter to help them stay within a client’s budget. Business intelligence platforms help law firms track how much time was historically spent on client matters and by which attorneys so that they can make more informed decisions when creating matter budget for new work. 

Business intelligence tools help law firms increase their profit margins by providing ongoing visibility into critical data points as only what can be seen can be addressed. Iridium, now part of BigHand reveals actions that your law firm can take to bring in more revenue. Iridium Technology, now part of BigHand business intelligence data and analytics solutions allow firms to monitor billings, invoices, accounts receivable, and even assist with client matter budgeting to capture revenue that might otherwise slip through the cracks. 

About BigHand Business Intelligence

BigHand’s Legal Business Intelligence is the most advanced BI solution for law firms. It’s flexible, autonomous and source agnostic data warehouse solution, replaces manual law firm finance reporting with a real-time digital overview of your financial data.

Specifically tailored for lawyers, finance and management teams, it strips the complexity away from the mountains of information you generate. The self-service tool gives users controlled access to the appropriate legal finance data which can be quickly and easily shown through any visualization tool of choice, including PowerBI.

BigHand BI