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Exchange • Q2 2016 >

Enenstein Ribakoff LaViña & Pham

Reaching New Heights with Reporting Intelligence from BIPro

Enenstein Ribakoff LaViña & Pham

Based in Los Angeles, Enenstein Ribakoff LaViña & Pham is a mid-sized law firm with offices throughout California and the east coast. With 22 lawyers on staff, it provides a wide range of legal expertise in areas such as employment law, business law, finance, and intellectual property matters.

Business Challenges

The firm was in need of a robust business intelligence and reporting dashboard to integrate with ProLaw.

Why BIPro?

BIPro is a business intelligence and financial reporting solution designed to mentor attorneys and other non-financial managers to better align their time with financially-driven results.

Benefits

  • Interactive dashboard presents the most important information at a glance
  • Automatic reporting features save time and reduce human error
  • Staff and shareholders can monitor performance and productivity
  • Improved billing accuracy and collections

An Out-of-the-box Solution

Enenstein Ribakoff LaViña & Pham is a result-oriented law firm that implements a creative approach to attain its clients’ objectives. Whether at trial or in the boardroom, the firm employs a multidisciplinary approach to complex situations to provide effective resolutions. By thinking outside of the box, they can bring positive results to otherwise difficult situations.

Although Enenstein Ribakoff LaViña & Pham is a mid-sized firm, it competes every day against larger firms to win new business. The firm maintains a competitive edge by being faster and more agile than larger firms. It is able to do so through its strategic use of technology. For financial and practice management, the firm relies on ProLaw®, the leading offering for mid-sized law firms from Thomson Reuters Elite that integrates case and matter management, as well as time entry, billing, and accounting functions within a single solution.

From a management perspective, the firm’s Transactional Department Chair Sal LaViña says that the ability to review and interpret data is essential to the firm’s success. So shortly after deploying ProLaw, it became a priority for the firm to integrate a dashboard that offered robust reporting of its centralized data. LaViña had learned from previous experiences that building a dashboard from scratch can be a lengthy and costly approach. Because of this, he and his team sought a pre-configured tool that would be appropriate for the mid-sized firm. They ultimately settled on BIPro™.

"When we learned that BIPro integrates directly with ProLaw, the decision was obvious, but we never would have anticipated that, right out of the box, it would be able to deliver on all of the reporting capabilities we desired."
– Sal LaViña, Transactional Department Chair

BIPro is a financial management and analytics reporting software available through Elite. BIPro was created by Advanced Legal to integrate with ProLaw to provide a uniquely visual, interactive dashboard with simplified and enhanced reporting. Through easy-to-use color-coded charts, firms can access key performance indicators (KPIs) in a matter of seconds without the need to create multiple lengthy financial reports. BIPro helps clients gather, store, and analyze data with comprehensive profitability analytics to visually track productivity and determine effectiveness.

“When we learned that BIPro integrates directly with ProLaw, the decision was obvious, but we never would have anticipated that, right out of the box, it would be able to deliver on all of the reporting capabilities we desired,” LaViña recalls. “BIPro is able to offer our firm all of the features that we would have designed ourselves, saving us a substantial investment of both time and budget.”

Because BIPro is designed to integrate with ProLaw, the firm’s controller Rick Dyreks says that the implementation process was very simple, and his team was able to manage it without any external resources. They worked closely with Advanced Legal to develop the reports required, and they continue to make improvements.

“Reports that I have been wanting to generate since I first joined the firm are now available to me in BIPro,” states LaViña. “We’ve been very pleased with the solution and with the Advanced Legal team.

At-a-glance Business Intelligence

Through ProLaw, LaViña and his team were able to create the accurate reports they needed to make informed business decisions, and now with the addition of BIPro, they have been able to take their reporting capabilities to the next level. Whenever they need to look up crucial business metrics, they can get a real-time, at-a-glance update from the BIPro dashboard. In addition, the report module within BIPro allows the firm to add reports for distribution to users through the BIPro interface. This feature allows the accounting staff to focus on higher level tasks while putting the data in the hands of the people who need it.

"We are now getting a number of our most important reports produced on a regular basis without any human interaction, and we have complete confidence in their accuracy," comments LaViña. "It has been a dream."

"Reports are now automatically emailed either every day, every week, or every month to all the shareholders—nobody even has to press a button thanks to BIPro," adds Dyreks.

Since deploying BIPro, Dyreks says that the dashboard has tremendously improved the staff's ability to interpret metrics and draw conclusions that impact the firm. This is because BIPro provides a high-level snapshot of the firm's important business metrics, translating complex data into easy-to-read graphs and charts that can be accessed from any device.

"Our lawyers are able to make decisions a lot more quickly, even on the go, when they don't have to wait for the accounting team to provide them with a report or a graph," explains Dyreks. "In just a few clicks, they can see everything they need in the dashboard."

"The dashboards in BIPro are adaptable and interactive to meet each user's needs. Blink charts visualize the data quickly, without requiring any extra effort from the user."
– Rick Dyreks, Controller

According to Dyreks, the biggest impact overall is that BIPro accesses all the information within the ProLaw database and displays it in multiple meaningful formats. For example, those in accounting typically use data in different ways than the firm's department heads. BIPro allows each user to display data in the most meaningful way and further drill down to the details that matter to them.

"Having access to the entirety of our ProLaw data isn't helpful to us if we can't identify the specific details we really need. The beauty of BIPro is that it sifts out and summarizes the details that the user values most," explains LaViña.

"The dashboards in BIPro are adaptable and interactive to meet each user's needs. Blink charts visualize the data quickly, without requiring any extra effort from the user," continues Dyreks.

In fact, BIPro can even be used to track productivity of firm staff and uncover strengths and weaknesses. Reports can be produced to show shareholders a snapshot of trends that are indicative of individual and overall staff performance, such as who has improved the most from year to year, who is the most consistent, and who might be lagging.

"With BIPro, we can identify and encourage behaviors that result in positive trends, and we can also find new ways to prevent and resolve habits among our staff that might be delaying our billing and collections," LaViña explains.

More Effective Billing Collections and Cash Flow

Since implementing BIPro, the firm has actually seen momentous improvements in its billing, with lawyers now able to deliver bills to clients within a few day's time, as opposed to taking a week or longer as they would in the past. And because BIPro enables LaViña and his team to more closely monitor billing trends, they have been able to identify instances of billable time that were not being captured previously.

"Correcting the issues associated with both of these areas has helped us improve the accuracy of our billing tremendously," claims LaViña.

Collection speed and cash flow also have increased exponentially because LaViña and his team are able to monitor the status of each bill. If time or costs were tracked and never billed, they can quickly and easily see where that occurred and address the issue.

"With BIPro, we have cut our billing write-offs in half, and our gross cash flow has improved dramatically because we always have a finger on the pulse," explains LaViña. "That's found money!"

"With BIPro, we have cut our billing write-offs in half, and our gross cash flow has improved dramatically because we always have a finger on the pulse. That's found money!"
– Sal LaViña

Such improvements have yielded significant business achievements, including a 20% increase in revenue from the previous year. When asked how the increase compares to recent year-over-year trends, LaViña responds, "I couldn't even tell you because we weren't able to track it before BIPro."

"It's hard to measure the return on investment of BIPro because it is so efficient and accurate," states Dyreks. "We can easily estimate that it has saved us tens of thousands of dollars already."

New Business

LaViña considers BIPro to be an essential tool in competing with larger firms for new business because it enables staff to work faster and more efficiently. "When we tell potential clients that we are able to offer the same services as larger firms at a lower charge and a faster speed, we can back up the claim with BIPro by showing them exactly how we are able to make it a reality."

Firm managers can also use standard BIPro reports such as "Effective Rates" to monitor not only the productivity of time keepers, but also the type of clients, matters, and billing arrangements that generate the most revenue and contribute to profitability. Visibility into this data can fuel better business development and staffing decisions.

"It is a priority of our firm to be cutting edge and best in class, and we utilize the best technology we can find to do so," continues LaViña. "For any firm of our size trying to compete at the next level, I would tell them that they are at a disadvantage without BIPro."