Technology to improve law firm operations

Technology to improve law firm operations

The client

Madgwicks Lawyers is a full-service commercial law firm providing legal solutions for organisations and individuals. The firm has close to 100 employees and was finding it cumbersome to manage employee expense claims.  

The firm was using a paper form with a manual process for approving and paying claims. This was inefficient and meant lots of paper and receipts moving from desk to desk for approval and payment.  When expenses required follow up questions by the Finance team to the employee the process was slowed down further, then, with the advent of COVID-19 and working from home, paper expense claims became even more difficult to manage. 

Madgwicks engaged Empyrean to deliver a streamlined, automated and auditable expense claim solution with the Power Platform.

Technology requirements

  • Solution must be easy to use and accessible via mobile and PC.
  • Inexpensive to implement and manage on an ongoing basis.
  • Reduce time and effort for the Finance team.
  • Have all details required for billing and accounting systems.
  • Easy for the partners to approve or reject claims.

Expense claim solution

Empyrean built an expense claims app within the Power Platform, using Power app, Power Automate and PowerBI. 

The Power App collects all the relevant data required for an expense claim – dates, expense category, supplier name, description, amount, and ability for user to take a photo of the receipt. 

The expense app is customised to include specific information required to complement Madgwicks’ expense categories, such as adding a matter code as well as a description for client billing when expenses are to be charged to a client. 

The solution used Power Automate to manage approvals – the employee chooses the Partner to approve from a dropdown selection, and then once submitted the approver receives an email requesting approval or rejection of the claim. 

The Finance team are advised by email once an expense is approved and ready for payment. 

The employee submitting the claim receives emails when submitted, when approved and then when paid – so no more calls to Finance to chase up the status of the expense claim!  

Empyrean also created PowerBI reports for Finance to access all the expense information provided by the employee and sorted by approver, date, and expense category.

Empyrean’s expense app provided us with a consistent, auditable and streamlined process for dealing with expense claims. Far removed from the paper-based system where time was spent chasing up extra information and receipts.

Expense claim app features

  • Easy-to-use, accessible app that employees can use on their mobile device or PC. 
  • Employees can take a photo of their expense receipt. 
  • Automation of expense approvals and notification to Finance. 
  • Employees are kept informed of the status of their claims when they are submitted, approved and paid. 
  • Finance can view all the expense data to process into billing/accounting system from PowerBI reports. 
  • The Power Platform is included in their Office 365 E3 licences.

Technology outcomes

  • Reduced time and effort required by Finance team to process expense claims.
  • All data fields are mandatory so no more chasing up extra information required by the Finance team.
  • Receipts must be attached, so no more incomplete claims.
  • Easy to process claims from PowerBI report into account/billing system. 
  • Minimal upfront investment to build and minimal ongoing costs.
  • Power platform is all integrated with Office 365 so security, backup, and management already established. 
  • Expense claims can be approved easily and quickly by selecting the option within an email.
  • No more paper – easy to use app replaced all the paper and resulted in a streamlined expense claim process. 

Empyrean’s expertise in law firm technology

Our team have significant experience delivering technology solutions for the Legal and Business services sector. Empyrean is skilled at uncovering cost-effective solutions to streamline operations through the Microsoft Power Platform. In addition, our deep expertise with Microsoft products and services, means we can provide other critical services to law firms, such as ensuring the security of your sensitive data and digital infrastructure. 

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