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Case study

Shakespeare Martineau opens new opportunities with a client-centric portal

As one of the UK’s fastest growing legal services providers, Shakespeare Martineau wanted to expand its digital workflow capabilities to deliver value-added services to clients

Shakespeare Martineau is a top 55 law firm with over 400 solicitors and lawyers operating in numerous sectors and geographies to provide pragmatic advice and deep sector expertise. Over the past seven years, the firm has grown significantly through a series of strategic acquisitions. As a result, many of its inherent operations became fragmented and inefficient. Data was collected in data rooms, stored in electronic files and spreadsheets and then primarily shared over email both internally and externally.

The challenge: Mitigating the manual search for data

In a rapidly changing digital ecosystem, this traditional way of working was quickly becoming obsolete and cumbersome for all involved. Shakespeare Martineau had already invested in HighQ from Thomson Reuters – an intelligent workflow platform – but had not made full use of its capabilities. “We were typically using the platform as a data room and just exchanging files in a secure environment,” described Dal Virdi, IT director at Shakespeare Martineau, “As a firm made up of positive, passionate people, we knew the HighQ platform could do a lot more for us based on our previous experiences with the capability. We just needed to be pioneering and take the firm on that journey with us.”

Shakespeare Martineau’s IT team recommended utilising the HighQ Collaborate portal dashboard to streamline ways of working and also improve integration and real-time updates across multiple systems. The goal was to provide clients with more ‘self-serve’ capabilities by leveraging real-time data from a centralised and secure location. “We demonstrated that if we throw away the old ‘rule book’ and start again completely afresh with a new way of working and operating, we could make a significant and positive difference to our operational capabilities and offer increased value to our clients, who are at the heart of everything we do,” added Virdi.

The solution

A single source of truth

Within a month, Thomson Reuters helped Virdi’s team activate the HighQ portal at Shakespeare Martineau and support an accelerated migration of all the legacy data leveraging the skills and expertise of the Thomson Reuters Customer Success Team, enabling clients to log in to personally branded portals and get real-time visibility of their data including milestone tracking, all up to date activities and full reporting. At the same time, clients could add comments, keep files current and see their data on dynamically updated dashboards, inclusive of graphs and charts. This improved information management informs decisions and supports subsequent activities and client interactions.

“The information is so much richer than it was previously when everything was done in email or spreadsheets. Now the firm and its clients can update milestone trackers and all sorts of other useful information. It’s made a massive difference and allows true real-time collaboration,” said Rohit Sharma, Head of Strategic Platforms at Shakespeare Martineau.

The solution is accessible anytime, anywhere by both clients and the firm – an important feature given the necessity for remote working requirements. Moreover, it can easily be personalised to match the client’s brand image and replicated to ensure operational consistency.

The results

Faster, easier access increases portal popularity

Shakespeare Martineau is pushing the boundaries of HighQ to create and deliver innovative client solutions. For example, Shakespeare Martineau reduced the number of manual clicks and staff interventions needed to communicate, collaborate and track operations, pushing value back to the client. The innovation is resulting in exponential growth. Shakespeare Martineau went from a limited internal user base of 15 to more than 300 and from less than 50 external users to 3,000 in less than a year.

“Through word of mouth, demonstrable efficiencies and the increased value provided across all of our new services offered through our HighQ capability, we’re increasing interest significantly,” said Virdi.

This satisfaction has turned into a market differentiator for both Shakespeare Martineau and its clients in terms of innovation. “We've now been able to obtain and achieve new opportunities and new clients in different markets – ones we've never considered before,” said Virdi. Now more and more clients are looking to Shakespeare Martineau to gain value from this simple yet powerful platform and collaborative way of working. “Quite often, it's because of the strength behind our portal capabilities and the features that we can demonstrate when we go into tenders and bids, which gives us an edge and has certainly supported some of the more positive results we have seen across a number of new opportunities lately.”

Sharma added: “We have put our head and shoulders above some of the law firms and legal operations within the sector and can demonstrate quite a significant amount of value.” As Shakespeare Martineau continues to grow, its clients rely on the portal's quality and speed for the confidence they need to succeed in today’s fast-paced digital environment.

About Shakespeare Martineau

Working with organisations of all sizes, the firm delivers a broad range of specialist legal services and has particular expertise across areas including but not limited to: energy, education, banking & finance, healthcare, investment funds, manufacturing, agriculture, family business, Islamic finance, later living, social housing and real estate. Shakespeare Martineau believes that legal counsel is only one piece of the jigsaw and bespoke business solutions are designed firmly around clients’ needs.

With over 800 people, Shakespeare Martineau has offices in Birmingham, London, Leicester, Nottingham, Milton Keynes, Solihull, Sheffield and Stratford-upon-Avon.

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