Fireman & Company Partner Tom Baldwin has been inducted as a Fellow into the College of Law Practice Management, which was formed in 1994 to honor and recognize distinguished law practice management professionals, to set standards of achievement for others in the legal profession, and to fund and assist projects that enhance the highest quality of law practice management.  Fellowship in the College is the highest honor bestowed upon individuals involved in law practice management.

Baldwin was inducted at the 2016 Futures Conference and Annual Meeting, held September 15-16 in Kansas City, MO, DC.

As a Partner at Fireman & Company, Tom specializes in building and leading teams aimed at improving firm efficiencies, profitability, attorney working practices and user experiences. His career success stems from a deep understanding of law firm financials and business practices then strategically aligning them with legal processes, attorney behaviors, and best of breed legal technologies.

“Tom was one of the very first thought leaders in legal practice management when the economic downturn hit. His work was ground-breaking and helped establish performance-based practice management in our industry,” said Fireman & Company founder Joshua Fireman. “We are delighted that he’s brought his hands-on and innovative experience to Fireman & Company.”

With over two decades of experience in the legal industry, Baldwin is considered a thought leader and pioneer in practice management, knowledge management and legal technology.  His CKO and CIO positions at Sheppard Mullin, Reed Smith and Cadwalader offer him a unique perspective very few in the consulting industry can match.   Tom’s career has been filled with industry accolades, including in 2013 being named by the National Law Journal to their inaugural list of 50 Business of Law Trailblazers & Pioneers.  He’s been a member of a number of industry boards including the Thomson Reuters Engage Advisory Board, Law Technology News Editorial Advisory Board, the Lexis Nexis Advisory Council, and the Law.com Technology Advisory Board. He is regularly asked to present at and chair international and domestic conferences covering emerging trends in the legal industry.

About Fireman & Company:  Fireman & Company is a legal industry-focused management consulting firm. Our team members have decades of experience as leaders in the industry, working as attorneys, CIOs, CKOs, and experts in KM, LPM, process improvement, and pricing. We are trusted advisors to the world’s most innovative law firms and corporations, and our mission is to help our clients make substantial, distinctive, and lasting improvements in performance.  For more information, please visit www.firemanco.com

Joshua Fireman, Ron Friedmann, Tom Baldwin and Eben Joel are appearing at ILTACON 2016.
Email info@firemanco.com to schedule a meeting with our consultants.
 
Fireman & Company has made several exciting announcements:
  • Drive > Knowledge Management: Fireman & Company is pleased to announce a new, fixed-fee KM Benchmarking service for law firms. It covers over 30 areas of KM, broken down with visual indicators under People, Process, and Technology. The Benchmark concludes with a Findings & Recommendations report, which is a great starting point for a 2-3 year KM plan. Firms looking to build out a KM program or firms with established KM programs have both found this of immense value.
  • Drive > DMS Adoption: Document Management System adoption in most firms is much lower than it should be. With regular usage between one-third and two-thirds of lawyers at most firms, collaboration suffers and firms incur more risk than they should. To help firms gain more from their DMS and improve user satisfaction with it, Fireman & Company is offering a new fixed fee program called Drive > DMS Adoption. It leverages our deep understanding of how lawyers work matters and how they manage documents. We start from our extensive use cases and requirements libraries, which we have built over two decades of working with lawyers, secretaries and law firms’ own clients. We help law firm IT and KM teams personalize each firm’s requirements to rethink, redesign and relaunch the DMS to drive better use and adoption. Rethink. Redesign. Relaunch. Document management can work. 
  • Drive > Intranet: With more firms looking to update and accelerate their Intranet efforts, Fireman & Company is pleased to announce Drive > Intranet, a fixed fee, turn-key intranet offering in collaboration with Handshake Software and DOOR3. Leveraging these award winning products, user experience designs and thought leadership allows firms to quickly implement beautifully designed, state-of-the-art practice portals, all at a fixed fee.
  • Drive > Search: Legacy enterprise search systems are expensive for law firms to maintain. Beyond often high annual maintenance fees, firms incur expenses customizing search to lawyer needs and adjusting the back-end to an ever-changing IT environment. Firms can accelerate a transition to modern search platforms by tapping Fireman & Company’s market leading expertise. Our Drive > Search is a fixed fee service that is built on our implementation framework developed from a decade-plus of experience implementing and managing complex enterprise search deployments. We can quickly map your current environment, requirements and customizations to make a new enterprise search investment work for firms and help lawyers work better. Drive > Search leverages our deep understanding of enterprise search – our hundreds of requirements, use cases and functional designs – to deliver the search experience your users have been asking for.  
You meet our team at these conference panels:
 
When Will Blockchains and Smart Contracts Be Important in Legal
 
If you knew in the early 1990s that the web and hypertext would explode on the scene in 1995, would you have done anything differently? Will we ever have a chance to relive that moment? Maybe. If you believe some pundits, we are at a similar moment for blockchain technology. Numerous mainstream media articles have covered it and associated smart contracts and cryptocurrencies, but what is blockchain technology exactly? Learn what the technology is, how smart contracts could change business and law, and how big companies in many industries are testing or using the blockchain and smart contracts.
 
Event Code: #ILTA061
Date: Tuesday, August 30, 2016
Time: 11:00 AM – 12:30 PM ET
Location: Nat’l Harbor 2 & 3
Speaker(s): Ron Friedmann, Rohit Talwar, Josias N Dewey, Tori Adams
Area of Focus: Business & Legal Process Improvements, Knowledge Management
 
Finding a Needle in a Haystack with 21st-Century Expertise Systems
 
Expertise location systems are ubiquitous at law firms of all sizes and are key solutions that help with everything from responding to client proposals to finding the right attorney to help with a particular matter. An effective expertise location tool can be a differentiator for law firms, yet they are tricky because of the need to pull together multiple sources of information while providing clear answers. People from the trenches will share their experiences of implementing various solutions and tips and tricks to keep in mind when you’re evaluating a new solution.
 
Event Code: #ILTA094
Date: Wednesday, August 31, 2016
Time: 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM ET
Location: Maryland D
Speakers: Kate Cain, Marybeth Corbett, Julie Bozzell, Joshua Fireman
Area of Focus: Knowledge Management, Business & Legal Process Improvements
 
Finally, Fireman & Company is sponsoring a cocktail reception at Wolfgang Puck’s Sunset Room with NetDocuments, Handshake, and Firm Directory from 5-7 PM on Wednesday, August 31.
 
Fireman & Company is a Gold Sponsor of the big iManage party, also on Wednesday night! Please join the celebration and network with old friends and current colleagues at Pose Rooftop Lounge right on Gaylord National Resort property. The party starts at 8 PM!

News release from our partner Handshake Software, Inc:

Alpharetta, Georgia – June 23, 2016Handshake Software, Inc., the market leading, award-winning provider of SharePoint-based products and services to the legal market, today announced that Am Law 100-ranked firms Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart and Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz have selected Handshake Universal Search (formerly known as SP Bridge) to deliver SharePoint-based enterprise search solutions, replacing Recommind’s Decisiv Search platform. To date, 20% of the Am Law 100 have licensed Handshake’s Universal Search.

Read the full press release here: Handshake-Search-release_June-2016

Joshua Fireman, president of Fireman & Company, has partnered with both firms for years and is quoted in the release:

“Ogletree Deakins and Baker Donelson are two of our most innovative clients. Both firms are developing highly personalized practice-centric intranets, and we needed a tool that could go beyond basic search requirements. We need to push information to lawyers based on who they are and what they are working on. Handshake gives us the technology we need to build systems that lawyers will use to improve their productivity.”

 

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Unparalleled legal management expertise in pricing, legal process improvement and legal project management highlights new group

 

New York and Montreal, June 8, 2016Fireman & Company, a leading management consulting firm for law firms and corporate legal departments, today joined forces with lean practice management and process improvement experts Gimbal Canada. The collaborative venture brings together pricing, legal process improvement, legal project management expertise and more to create the industry’s first ever Performance, Profitability & Innovation Group. Aligning with Gimbal, and recently adding legal industry expert Tom Baldwin, signify Fireman & Company’s most important strategic moves since its inception. Collectively, Fireman & Company and Gimbal have worked with Am Law 100 firms, Magic Circle firms, leading national and regional firms, in-house legal departments, and legal teams servicing government departments and agencies.

By joining forces to create the Performance, Profitability & Innovation Group, the team now provides law firms and corporate legal departments with proven expertise that is much more than the sum of the individual parts of pricing, process improvement, and project management. When these strategies are integrated, carefully planned, and executed as part of a comprehensive initiative, the result is profitable, measurable, and sustainable performance excellence.

“Until now, law firms have been forced to pick a solution before understanding the specific pricing, project management, and process improvement problems they are trying to solve,” stated Fireman & Company’s President, Joshua Fireman. “Firms have been asking:

  • Why bring in a pricing expert if it will drive down profitability?
  • Why project manage a flawed process?
  • Why improve without the ability to execute and deliver the improved process?

We concluded that the newly formed PPI Group could best partner with law firms and corporate legal departments to answer these questions.”

Specifically, the Group will:

  • Assess legal service delivery models in key areas including pricing, process efficiency, project management, knowledge management, technology, financial analysis, and staffing. This includes analyzing clients, practices, or portfolios facing delivery and profitability challenges.

  • Build an implementation plan for short- and long-term improvements, to end analysis paralysis with concrete recommendations focused on improved performance and profitability.

  • Partner with clients and select, prioritize, manage, and execute recommended projects. Implementation plans follow a progression that increases buy-in, builds on successes, monitors key performance metrics, and integrates the critical elements of performance excellence.

Karen Dunn Skinner, Gimbal co-founder, commented: “Through Gimbal, we’ve been empowering legal professionals to deliver better quality advice and services in less time and less cost with our LeanLegal™ workshops and facilitated process improvement projects. The integrated PPI service we’re now offering with Fireman & Company gives us an even stronger way to support our clients.”

David Skinner, Gimbal’s other co-founder, added: “Together, we have the ability to mix and match elements to better meet the needs of law firms and in-house legal departments in a way that single offering consulting firms simply cannot.”

Partners in the PPI Group include:

Tom Baldwin. Tom’s career in the legal industry spans more than 20 years, and includes several c-suite positions at leading Am Law 100 firms. He is a globally recognized thought leader and expert in practice management and economics, information management, legal technology, and knowledge management.

Karen Dunn Skinner. Karen combines 20 years’ experience practicing law in Canada and Europe with a black belt in Lean Six Sigma. She co-founded Gimbal in 2012 and has spent the last 4 years leading process improvement initiatives in firms and internal legal departments across North America, and writing about the application of Lean in law.

Ron Friedmann. Ron is a lawyer by training, with over 20 years’ experience improving law practice and legal business operations with technology, knowledge management, and alternative resourcing. He is a pioneer of legal process improvement, knowledge management, e-discovery, virtual law libraries, law firm portals, and online legal services.

David Skinner. David brings together almost 25 years’ experience practicing law in BigLaw and inhouse in Canada, Europe, and the UK, and formal training as a Lean Six Sigma Sensei. A member of the New York and Massachusetts bars, David co-founded Gimbal with Karen. Like her, David is a thought leader on change and innovation in law, and has spent the last four years leading process improvement initiatives across North America.

“Now we can help firms in an area where they’ve been underserved and disappointed. We’ve watched firms struggle with pricing, process improvement, and legal project management over the years. We have been privileged to work with tremendous, industry-leading clients in these areas, and are looking forward to sharing methodologies and best practices with the industry at large. Frankly, there’s not a team like this anywhere else out there,” concluded Fireman.

For more information about the PPI Group, please visit Fireman & Company or Gimbal.

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About Fireman & Company

Fireman & Company is a legal industry-focused management consulting firm. It partners with the world’s most innovative law firms and corporations. Fireman & Company’s mission is to help its clients make substantial, distinctive, and lasting improvements in performance. Change management, strategic IT, and process improvement bring concrete, measurable results. Fireman & Company delivers KM strategies, improves legal service delivery, evaluates software solutions, and implements critical software such as enterprise search, Intranets, experience management, DM, and email management systems. For more information about Fireman & Company, visit www.firemanco.com.

About Gimbal

Gimbal is a Lean practice management advisory firm and leader in adapting Lean and Six Sigma to the legal services industry. Its focus is helping professionals in law firms, in-house, and in the legal departments of government agencies increase efficiency, productivity, competitiveness, and profitability. With a proven track record using its LeanLegal™ approach to develop tailored, sustainable solutions and facilitating improvement projects, Gimbal helps clients transform their service delivery model by optimizing legal services and the business and administrative services that support them. For more information about Gimbal, visit www.gimbalcanada.com.

 

By Joshua Fireman, President & Founder, Fireman & Company

The enterprise search market is getting interesting again and that is a good thing for all of us. The big question this week is, “What does OpenText’s acquisition of Recommind mean?” 

Find out the answer at ILTA Knowledge Management Peer Group blog: OpenText’s New Purchase: A Requiem for Recommind?