How Pond Lehocky took its practice to the next level

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Following a $50 million dollar investment from Tiger Global Management into Litify, a law firm efficiency software provider, Pond Lehocky Stern Giordano is offering free management platform tutorials at its headquarters in Philadelphia, PA.

Pond Lehocky has been using the cutting-edge platform for years. Litify—a cloud-based software system built with Salesforce by law firms, for law firms—is an integrated and automated technology that helps drive profitability and increase efficiency. The system’s benefits extend to intakes, reports, case management, marketing, phone system, application stores and much more.

Shawn Lehocky, the Chief Strategy Officer at Pond Lehocky, was the first person to bring Litify to PA’s largest workers’ compensation firm and oversaw the integration with attorneys and staff.

“We knew we needed to develop a different way of thinking. When we started using Litify, we began evaluating everything we are doing. The data forced us to make some very hard decisions. It presented us with some data that at times we were uncomfortable seeing. We had to learn what our attorneys and staff were really spending their time on. We had to ask ourselves if there was a way to automate tasks in order to make our employees happier, freeing them up to better help our clients and provide them with more personal care,” Lehocky said.

Litify is born
About three years ago, Managing Partner Samuel Pond had the opportunity to sit down with the CIO of SAP, one of the largest software companies in the world. The purpose of the discussion was to develop an integrated technological platform for personal injury law firms. Although there was interest from SAP, ultimately the solution was developed by the amazing team at Litify, who shared our firm’s vision for the future of legal technology. This is a product built on Salesforce, the 4th largest software company in the world.
Pond Lehocky has seen the myriad benefits of Litify since fully migrating to it last year, and the firm remains just as excited and enthusiastic about the platform as it did when it first began implementing the technology.

Other major law firms got on board early, as well. Morgan & Morgan, the Orlando, Fla.-based personal injury powerhouse, was also an early adopter and, like Pond Lehocky, has become a key booster for the platform.

A law firm is a business
Pond Lehocky's involvement with Litify grew as a response to a problem all businesses face—how to keep up with competitors and grow strategically.
Law firms often lag behind other industries in the embrace of change and technology. Often, that's because the firms' leaders are lawyers who are focused on litigation and representing their clients. Very few understand the business of law or the speed of change from a technological standpoint.

"I’m always amazed at how most lawyers don’ t even know basic financial terms and they are the managing leaders. Very few have any idea of what their business is worth, " Sam Pond said. "You should always be aware of what your balance sheet is. It’s the health of your business."

Pond Lehocky set out to find a better way to leverage technology in a way that keeps the quality of work high while the volume of manual, low value work is minimized. The solution involved harnessing data.

Tracking the right data
Data can provide keen insight into everything including client outcomes, staff efficiency and financial performance. Law firms amass a vast amount of data, but most don't understand what to do with it. It is easy to drown in that data. It is important to focus on those numbers that are most applicable to the firm.

Marketing, business development, intake, case management—these all involve expenditures of time and money. But what is worth the time and money? Many firms are unable to track these metrics necessary to understand what is worth their time and money. They miss out on reaching a deeper understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of their practices. Without key data, solving your firm's problems is a guessing game. The right data can help pinpoint problems and then track whether changes are working.

Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs, track and monitor certain aspects of a firm's performance. Firm KPIs should be very specific, based on the firm's characteristics and type of practice. They should objectively measure what is important to that firm They are not one-size-fits-all; the most valuable ones are those designed specifically for the individual firm.

That's where Litify comes in. Litify's chief benefit is that it helps law firms sort through the data to find the key measurements of success. It offers customized analytics that provide a comprehensive picture of the overall health and financial performance of the firm.

The platform helps firms develop the right KPIs to establish a strategy for pursuing new work and engaging those clients that best fit your practice. With Litify, firms can:

  •     Track the cost and performance of your marketing efforts per client
  •     Develop a clear profile of who to engage and how to engage them
  •     Develop a profile of a successful matter and use this model at intake to decide whether to take a case
  •     Track the average time and cost to resolve various types of matters

This data may reveal that some matters are not worth taking because of the time and cost-effectiveness for the firm’s business model.

Collaboration and Optimization

Most of the firms Pond Lehocky works closely with have adopted Litify as well. The advantages include:

  •     Development of referral partnerships with other firms using the same platform
  •     The ability to set up operational efficiencies so departments within firms can easily integrate with each other
  •     Seamless, more efficient work between firms
  •     Referrals are dealt with promptly
  •     Clients receive service with optimal speed

Pond Lehocky's vision now is for its entire referral network to realize the benefits of using this integrated, automated system to drive efficiencies and profitability in their own firms.
A bright future on the cutting edge

“Litify allows us to go places that would take us 5-10 years to get to in the next couple of months thanks to the automation,” said Pond Lehocky Chief Strategy Officer Shawn Lehocky.
And the future for Litify is particularly bright. Last week the Brooklyn-based company announced it has raised $50 million in Series A funding from Tiger Global Management. Litify says the cash infusion will help it "aggressively expand its sales and marketing efforts as well as broaden and accelerate product development."

That means continued by-in from Pond Lehocky and its referral network.

“We’re very excited to be using a tool that puts us on the cutting edge of the legal industry. We can now provide the best customer service to our clients – they’re already going through a lot and the last thing they should worry about is how they’re being treated by their law firms," Lehocky said.

Pond Lehocky Stern Giordano opened its doors in July 2010. Today, it is the largest workers’ compensation and Social Security disability law firm in the region and has expanded nationwide with offices in New Jersey, New York and California. The firm has also recently added new practice areas for workers, including employment law and long-term disability, and has a national referral network, which has helped 86,000 clients with referrals.

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Maura Kennedy
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