Lawyers are increasingly using the cloud. According to the annual technology report of the American Bar Association, 54.6 percent of lawyers used cloud services in 2018. And that number is growing every year. This is a normal evolution: working via the cloud is generally cheaper and more secure, and cloud services also have the advantage that they can be reached at any time and from anywhere. The only condition is access to the Internet.
All the major software packages for managing law firms are now available as a cloud solution, with all the benefits that entails. CICERO LawPack has been using cloud technologies for several years, and with Office 365 you have a set-up that can run entirely in the cloud, and is therefore accessible anywhere, anytime.
CICERO LawPack Webservices fit perfectly in this evolution. The Webservices also run in a cloud environment and communicate with third party software. For example, solutions are available to work with a scanner or to use analysis software. It does not matter where the software is located, as long as it can log on to the Webservices.
Many law firms still use remote access software. They typically use a remote desktop via a Terminal Server. This Terminal Server often has MS Office installed on it, as well as Internet Explorer. Internet Explorer is then used to manage their Office environment, where users can browse to the CICERO environment via IE. Sometimes, the central Terminal Server may host other software packages, such as banking software, or dictation software, or eID software for reading ID cards. In the past, such a set-up was the easiest way to work remotely, and it was also closer to the ‘old’ way of working, where everything was located on a central server in the office.
However, with the current version of CICERO LawPack, in combination with Office 365, there is no longer any reason for most law firms to continue using this old way of working. CICERO LawPack can be used via a browser, and with Office 365 a user can also work from anywhere, at any time.
In the past, there were restrictions on the licenses for MS Office, which limited on how many devices the software could be installed. But that situation has changed dramatically. For both CICERO LawPack and Office 365, the number of registered users is the most important criterion. Office 365 allows all registered users to install the software on multiple devices: on a PC in the office, a PC at home, a laptop … This is no problem at all.
Most third-party software (Adobe, banks, etc.) can usually be installed on different devices without any problems, either. Sometimes extra steps may be needed, for example when using certificates: these will have to be installed on the different devices. And sometimes there may be other obstacles, such as licensing agreements for third party software that have specific requirements. But for most law firms, it is no longer necessary to use a remote desktop and a Terminal Server.
Working without a remote desktop and Terminal Server is a real cloud solution. It is cheaper, more modern, simpler, more convenient, and faster.