Newly formed Atkins Dellow was the Suffolk-based branch of London firm Atkins Thomson.  Stepping out as an independent firm of 30 users in Bury St Edmunds they needed to choose new case and business management systems.

It was critical to hit the ground running with effective systems in place and operating when they launched the new company – even more so when that unexpectedly came to coincide with a global pandemic.

“It was important to us to have the flexibility of an agile hosted-system

Nino Piccoli, Partner, Atkins Dellow
Nino Piccoli, Partner, Atkins Dellow

Nino Piccoli, one of the founding Partners of the new firm said “It was important to us to have the flexibility of an agile hosted-system with  established workflows for the different areas of our work and business.“ he carried on to say “It was also vital that the legal accounting software fully integrated with the CMS and met all the needs of the business and our accounts personnel and was intuitive enough for all user fee earners and admin staff to work with.”

Nino was instrumental in the system selection process and reviewed a number of products and services from a number of potential suppliers. Atkins Dellow settled on DPS Cloud and DPS Software for their case management and accounts, also choosing MyLegalSpace as their client portal & SafeChat as their client facing secure communications App, all provided by DPS through the cloud.

Going live in the face of COVID-19

The project plan was agreed and put into place shortly after the firm placed their order in November 2019. The new firm was to launch in April 2020 and it was important that everything was in place to allow the launch to go ahead.

As we now all know eight days before go-live, the 1st of April, the UK was locked down! Eight days before launch was not great timing to have to change all the plans that had been put in place for the new firm of Atkins Dellow to launch.

"We have a great team here who all worked together to get everything arranged, despite the fact we were all getting used to working from home ourselves”.

Social distancing measures meant that the office-based classroom training had to be changed.

Miranda Grogan, Client Services Manager at DPS Software said, “It wasn’t ideal having to change all of our plans just a week before Atkins Dellow were due to go live, but we have a great team here who all worked together to get everything arranged, despite the fact we were all getting used to working from home ourselves”.

Miranda Grogan, Client Services Manager at DPS Software
Miranda Grogan, Client Services Manager at DPS Software

Miranda went on to say, “we engaged our technical department to get MS Teams in place for all Atkins Dellow staff who were by then working from home to make sure they could engage with our team and our trainers on line. Once we had that all in place we quickly embraced the ‘new normal’ and everyone handled the situation really well so that the client could go live & meet their deadline.”

Disruption? What disruption?

Three weeks after go-live and with the lockdown still in place, all users are working remotely without issue.

Nino said, “We greatly appreciate the work that DPS put in to get us over the line in time for the launch of the new firm. Obviously, we needed to have the software in place for the launch of the new business so we could start working immediately, with no disruption; and despite everything, they did it.”

"By using the range of software from DPS we’re all able to keep working productively and efficiently across the firm.”

“The support we received from Miranda’s Client Services team, the trainers and engineers to get everything organised, set up and everyone trained, was excellent. All of our staff are now working well from home and are confident and impressed with the DPS Tech Support team who are all on hand to help us out with any issue we have.”

“Despite us all working from home, by using the range of software from DPS we’re all able to keep working productively and efficiently across the firm.” Nino added, “Having the accounts fully integrated with the CMS makes the lives of our accounts team, fee earners and admin support so much easier, especially with everyone working remotely. It means everything is effected electronically in one system, so we don’t need to print anything or enter information into multiple pieces of software.”

A Great Start

Nino finished, “It’s been a great start to the relationship with DPS Software and we’re delighted with how things are going so far. We look forward to working with DPS over the coming years, knowing that many of us will continue working remotely much of the time, and if there’s ever anything else to prevent staff from getting to the office, we don’t need to worry about business continuity.”

“Being hosted with DPS removes a lot of barriers to getting software up and running across a firm."

Scott Ridley, Technical Director, DPS Software
Scott Ridley, Technical Director, DPS Software

Scott Ridley, Technical Director at DPS Software, said, “We often talk about the benefits of business continuity and disaster recovery for our hosted clients, but we are living disaster recovery and experiencing business continuity right now."

"Atkins Dellow going live in the middle of a global pandemic shows that business need not stop, we can continue, legal services are needed, probably more now than ever before, and DPS can make that change happen, pandemic or not!”

“Being hosted with DPS removes a lot of barriers to getting software up and running across a firm and I was very pleased with the way that our team handled the situation at such short notice, and more importantly, delighted that we got a great outcome for Atkins Dellow.”

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