Case Study

Reporting and Financial Tracking Issues Are Resolved by Software-Enabled Service SpendConnect

 

A global Am Law 15 firm enlisted HBR Consulting (HBR) to assist in automating commodity reporting functions and streamlining spend management while instituting a greater, firm-wide change around financial tracking.

 

Challenge

Prior to engaging with HBR, the firm was finding it challenging to manage siloed sets of financial data due to multiple financial cubes (tools that permit data analysis in multiple dimensions), inconsistent data entry methods, and limited automated reporting. The firm greatly needed a solution that would streamline manual, time-consuming tasks and reduce complexity around managing resources, platform usage, contracts and spend into a single interface.

Approach

HBR conducted a holistic analysis of the firm’s knowledge systems and identified new opportunities related to people, processes and technology. To improve upon the firm’s data management practices, HBR implemented a custom solution, SpendConnect – Research and Information Solutions (RIS).

Objectives

To address concerns about the misinterpretation of data due to disconnected platforms, HBR identified four solutions for consistent problem areas:

  • Automate report creation and routine tasks. Previously, the firm depended on weekly reports. This was a manual and labor-intensive process until the firm began using SpendConnect’s reporting feature. SpendConnect allows for quick changes to reports and charts to meet stakeholders’ evolving needs. Data model adjustments are easy, allowing the firm to lean on the tool for instant analysis.
  • Centralize data for contract management. SpendConnect provided datadriven insights into platform usage, spend, contracts and demographic information that now allows the firm to evaluate where they are getting the most value out of their contracts at a granular level.
  • Create visibility into user and demographic habits. SpendConnect aggregates data at the user, title, department and location levels. This has allowed the firm to gain insights into each demographic and identify different strategies for each as the go through change management initiative.
  • Intuitive UI / UX experience for the end user. HBR’s tool provides the firm’s staff with a dashboard that is intuitive and includes easy-to-use tabs that make for a more streamlined experience. All charts and tables within SpendConnect can be exported to Excel with the simple click of a button.

Results + Benefits

In just 8 weeks, the HBR team, with its deep understanding and experience in data-driven decision making for law firms, worked in collaboration with the firm to integrate an application that drives a higher level of reporting and improved efficiency by reducing manual efforts. As a result, the firm has seen:

  • Efficient workflows. Implementing SpendConnect reduced time spent compiling information and increased the time available to spend on analysis.
  • Centralized data. SpendConnect created a higher level of data integrity by eliminating the need for multiple files for client-related work.
  • Greater visibility. SpendConnect improved data analysis due to custom filters, groupings and hierarchies for different departments and attorney locations. This led to more actionable insights into the firm’s contract pipeline, AP spend and platform usage.

As if someone turned on the light switch, we can now make decisions based on usage data. It helps with both renewal or cancelation decisions, as well as adjusting the price we pay for accessing various services.

Chief Knowledge Officer, New York-based Am Law 15 firm