Law firms: 6 most common IT oversights – Part Five

5 April 2019
Get in touch

Share on social..

Lack of investment in business continuity

In Part Four of our series about the most common IT oversights, we looked at how many law firms see IT as a necessary evil rather than a useful tool that could help improve work efficiency and profits. In Part Five, we will look at how investing time and resources in a robust business continuity plan will save time and money and possibly the future of your firm in the event of a disaster.

Differences between backing up and business continuity

Like all firms, you will make regular backups of your IT system in case something happens. But keeping your backed-up data in a safe place is only part of disaster recovery – it is vital that you also have an effective business continuity plan if you are going to stand a chance of getting your firm up and running with minimal disruption.

What is a disaster?

When we use the word ‘disaster’, it sounds as though we are only referring to apocalyptic events. But, in terms of business continuity, a disaster could be as seemingly innocuous as a short power cut. It is what happens in the aftermath of the event that counts.

This applies to any firm regardless of size or sector. In 2017, British Airways found this out to its cost when its system crashed, probably due to a short power cut. Without an adequate continuity plan in place, the airline lost its data resulting in major bank holiday chaos. It cost the company an estimated £170m, not to mention the massive damage to its reputation. If BA had invested the time and money in a business continuity plan, it is unlikely that any passengers would have been aware of the problem, let alone been so inconvenienced by it.

How does a business continuity plan help your firm recover from a disaster?

Recently, a faulty air conditioning unit caused a fire in one of our neighbouring businesses, which gave us pause for thought about business continuity. We do not know what contingency plans that business had in place, but hopefully it was a robust one which meant it would not have had a long, and potentially fatal, break in business. A good business continuity plan would include:

Alternative premises for staff to work at, whether they are home-based or there is an arrangement in place making it quick and easy to move straight into serviced office space
Provision for the right technology to be available, even if it means asking staff to use their personal laptops and phones for a while
Swift access to company data. If your firm keeps all its data on the Cloud, that should not be a problem. If you need to work from backup files, you must prioritise the order in which they are restored, giving your team access to the most important data first; restoring backups is a hugely time-consuming process which could severely delay the recommencement of business.

Many SME legal firms still do not see the need to invest in a business continuity plan, preferring to keep their IT budget as low as possible just to keep the lights on. But if you take the trouble to understand what the risks to your business are and plan out what to do after a number of different disaster scenarios, you will understand the importance of investing in a business continuity plan.

GDPR

Remember that your business continuity plan also needs to take data compliance into consideration. If you lose your data, it is considered to be a data breach which comes under GDPR rules. So, in addition to the challenge of getting your business up and running again, you will also need to contact the Information Commissioner’s Office to report a possible breach.

Testing

While a robust plan is a great thing to have in place, you must also test it regularly to ensure it is fit for purpose, and to give your staff the confidence to implement it if needed. We will cover testing in the final part of our short series about common IT oversights made by the legal industry.

What our customers say

Lumina Technologies have taken the time to understand the requirements of our business and work as our strategic IT partner, enabling us to concentrate on delivering a high quality service to our clients and focus on our growth strategy. They have delivered a 100% cloud solution to our business with no underlying infrastructure costs or maintenance, which gives us scalability for our planned growth. It also means our business critical applications and data are securely accessible from virtually all our user devices. Lumina’s professional approach and strategic expertise is highly valued and their management of our IT – based on their in-depth knowledge, leaves us confident that our systems are available 24×7.

Luke Harrison, Keidan Harrison LLP

Lumina have supported us so well through the difficult circumstances of 2020.  They worked extremely hard to ensure we were able to work remotely and continue to operate our business successfully.The support team are very friendly and knowledgeable, and have excellent response times.

The team have also enhanced our cyber security which is so important in the legal sector, and they continue to provide high quality advice to help us move forward with our IT goals.

Adams & Remers

The quality of IT Support provided by Lumina Technology is of the highest standard and is complemented by effective client liaison with impressive response times. Trap Oil Group plc has no hesitation in recommending Lumina as a dedicated and specialist group of IT professionals.

Martin David
Technical Director, Trap Oil Group plc

Richard and his team are a real inspiration to anyone who meets them and I have watched Lumina’s growth over the last few years with interest and admiration. Richard has been an amazing supporter of the Hospice of St Francis, being a Gold member of the Corporate Partner Network for almost two years. He takes an active interest in the community and is passionate about his company and his town: nothing is too much trouble, he is always willing to help, to give up his time and to provide business advice when asked. Lumina is an inspiration to any company wanting to set up business in Hertfordshire.

Carolyn Addison
Corporate Fundraising Manager, The Hospice of St Francis

Lumina Technologies Prism Hosted Desktop has allowed our business to centralise our global corporate data, allowing much faster access for all our staff – regardless of their location. We have also been able to simplify and reduce our infrastructure and management overhead. With the new Prism Hosted Desktop solution all staff now have simple and secure access to corporate data using any device they choose. Prism Hosted Desktop has increased the productivity of our staff and given us a single, consistent and familiar experience for all users from any device, in any location, 24/7.

Katherine Roe
Chief Executive Officer, Wentworth Resources PLC

The commercially sensitive and regulated nature of Lambert Energy Advisory’s business requires an IT provider able to maintain the highest levels of integrity and confidentiality, Lumina Technologies has consistently been unimpeachable in this regard over the nine years we have employed them.

Patrick Agar
Lambert Energy Advisory

It has been a great pleasure working with Lumina Technologies over the past two years. They have fully committed to being involved in the local community with volunteering and with professional advice and commitment, helping many local charities along the way. As a growing company it proves that being involved in the local community is helping them attract and retain a talented workforce and I look forward to working with them well into the future.

Cindy Withey
Connect Dacorum

Hawkstone Management Services Ltd is a small company for which IT Outsourcing is realistically the only viable option. Lumina Technologies have successfully performed this role for over fifteen years. They also provide innovative solutions to keep pace with technological progress. I would have no hesitation in recommending Lumina to similar sized businesses.

Stephen Pembury
Hawkstone Management Services Ltd

Charles Douglas Solicitors LLP have been using Lumina Technologies for a number of years now and continue to be impressed by the technical know-how and contemporary knowledge of their senior management, who provide a timely, efficient and friendly service. Whether it is a small issue with one computer, or a strategic IT decision, they maintain a current knowledge of available technologies. Lumina are always at the other end of the phone to help resolve issues and minimise business interference. The technical knowledge of Richard and his senior team means that there has not been a problem that they can’t solve to date. I am sure we will continue to use them in the years to come.

Charles Douglas
Managing Partner, Charles Douglas Solicitors LLP

The team at Lumina Technologies have made the Amoun Travel & Tours office IT transition seamless and problem free. The office set-up has been vastly improved and the IT Support services are flawless. No issue goes unresolved, which is extremely reassuring.

Adam Helmy
Amoun Travel & Tours Ltd

Lumina Technologies has been Salamander Energy plc’s IT provider since start-up in 2005 and has supported us in London during our expansion across operational offices in SE Asia. Their professional approach, strategic advice and close co-operation have been essential in making this a success.

John Bell
Group Technical Director, Salamander Energy plc

Richard and his team at Lumina have provided Perrett Laver Limited with high quality strategic and practical IT Services for over ten years. During this period, Perrett Laver has grown from 10+ colleagues based in London to nearly 100 colleagues located in six offices across the Americas, EMEA and Asia-Pacific. Richard and the Lumina team have not just been responsive to our ‘everyday’ IT needs, but have proactively sought to work with us on developing an infrastructure suitable for the type of operation we are today, and are planning to be months and years down the line. I would not hesitate to recommend Richard, especially for small to medium size business with growth in mind.

Clementine McKinley
COO, Perrett Laver Limited

.

Society Limited has been supported by Lumina Technologies since our earliest start-up phase. From large logistical challenges like an office move, through to smaller fiddly issues like fixing a faulty e-template, we know we can count on their support and advice. They’ve also been able to engage with us strategically on the challenge of scaling-up our infrastructure as the firm continues to grow and evolve. We always feel confident going to Lumina with a problem, since we know they genuinely care about sorting things out and helping us to get on with our core business.

Simon Lucas
Managing Director, Society Limited

The Vita Group HQ staff have worked with Richard McBarnet and Lumina Technologies for over 9 years, with Lumina providing all our PC, server, phone, and software support. The services have included C-level executives based in London, Manchester, the US, as well as supporting home office IT as well. The service provided and intellectual capabilities are outstanding and we would highly recommend Richard and his Lumina team.

Joe Menendez
CEO, The Vita Group

We worked with Lumina on a GDPR Audit. Richard was knowledgeable and professional throughout, and did the best he could to bring a dry topic to life through lots of real life examples and analogies. We were so impressed with the service Lumina provided and the value we got from partnering with them on this project – we couldn’t recommend them enough.

Holly Cottingham, Vintec Laboratories

Discuss Your Business’s IT Needs

Get in touch Request a quote