Insight Legal

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Insight Legal's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Insight Legal is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles

Professional Services Director,
Deborah Edwards
Our accessible and intuitive software
brings together law and finance to
address clients’ software needs
Insight Legal is an independent software company dedicated
to the design, development, supply and support of specialist
software for law firms. Since launching in 2011, the firm has
grown from a single location in Hampshire to opening additional
offices in Belfast and Glasgow. With a sound foundation of
expertise and a fresh approach, it brings together law, finance,
technology and business. Professional Services Director Deborah
Edwards discusses the challenges and successes of a start-up
company that has grown from strength to strength.
Law firms are unique entities, and they have a number of factors that set them
apart from other commercial organisations and professional service providers.
In launching Insight Legal, our primary goal was to produce a fully featured and
easy to use software system specifically for legal practices, while ensuring that it
remained usable, affordable and accessible.
What we do
We produce software for law firms. Our system enables firms to manage their
finances and clients’ legal accounts, alongside producing letters and documents,
completing legal forms, recording their time and managing their compliance.
There are many software systems available to law firms, offering varying levels of
assistance and automation. Having all worked in legal technology for many years, we
as directors of the company saw the launch of a new software product as an exciting
»Directors: Deborah Edwards,
Brian Welsh, Tim Smith
»Established in 2011
»Head office in Farnborough,
»Offices also in Glasgow and
»Services: Design and
development of specialist
software for law firms
»No. of employees: 22, plus
regional resellers
»We combine technology,
business, law and finance
»Our staff are spread across
our offices in Farnborough,
Glasgow and Belfast and
range in age from 21-68
»Customer retention currently
99.3 per cent
Insight Legal
Highlighting best practice
opportunity to return to basics and
place the focus back on customer care
and personal service. At the same time,
we had to appreciate that encouraging
firms to invest in new technologies was
likely to be achallenge.
Launching a new company during
the recession was daunting. We put
many hours into driving the business
forward, and we could see the results
first-hand. The exact figure is unknown,
but somewhere between 40 and 50
per cent of new start-up businesses in
the UK fail within their first five years.
We realised we had to have something
unique, and that if our business was to
succeed, then we would not only have
to be efficient and effective ourselves,
but also bring those same efficiencies
to our customers.
Doing things differently
Back in 2011, when we first formed,
it was traditional in the legal software
market to charge an upfront purchase
fee for software and then a smaller
ongoing monthly or annual fee for
software updates and support. It would
have been tempting for us to do the
same to recover the inevitable start-up
costs of the business, but we knew a
different approach was necessary.
We built our business model around
recurring revenue on an SaaS –
software as a service – basis. We made
it easy for firms to afford the software
by eliminating any upfront cost and
instead only charging a monthly
fee. This meant that they could
consider changing software systems
without the prospect of taking out a
finance agreement or making a large
We also ensured that we priced
our software and services extremely
competitively, offering not just
software and training, but also project
management and data migration.
All of this was provided on a rolling
monthly contract, so customers would
be taking very little risk and could walk
away at short notice if they chose.
To do so much work for no immediate
financial return must have seemed
ridiculous at first. Indeed, some
potential customers thought it too
good to be true.
We firmly believed, however, that
our offering demonstrated our
commitment to our business and
to our customers. There could
be absolutely no doubt that our
customers’ satisfaction was our
absolute priority.
Law is not just a profession; it is also
a business. Despite the somewhat
staid reputation that some solicitors’
practices may have, there can be no
doubt that, in recent years, there has
been a significant increase in firms
embracing change and wanting to
increase their operational efficiencies.
Encouraging firms to look at taking on
our software became not just about
explaining the cost, but demonstrating
the value. We became innovators,
thought leaders and trusted advisors,
going the extra mile to prove to
our customers that we wanted to
Insight Legal’s stand at
a legal conference in
Glasgow – one of the
many we attend
If our business
was to
succeed then
we would not
only have to
be efficient
and effective
ourselves, but
bring those
efficiencies to
our customers
Continuing our success
We’ve always been careful to not
employ “pushy” sales tactics. Despite
knowing the huge benefits of our
service, we appreciate that the time
may not be right for some firms and,
for others, it may not be quite the right
solution – which brings us to one of
our key values: honesty.
We maintain that if we feel our
software is not right for a firm, we
will be the first to tell them. We have
no intention of selling a customer
anything that they don’t need.
We continue to innovate with our
product, making sure that we stay
up-to-date with regulatory changes in
both law and finance.
The Solicitors’ Regulation Authority,
the Law Societies of England & Wales,
Scotland, Northern Ireland & the
Republic of Ireland and HMRC all
have their own constantly evolving
rules and regulations that we have to
ensure our software is compliant with
– not to mention the technological
advances we have to continually stay
abreast of.
While the image that some people
have of a solicitor is someone working
in an office surrounded by books, the
reality is that our users need to be
more mobile than ever.
The development of our mobile app
and the increase in the use of cloud
technology have enabled us to provide
our customers with solutions to
meet their business challenges and,
ultimately, guarantee stable growth.
As a company, we strive to provide a
personal service that some may not
expect from a technology provider.
So, instead of the usual call centre
assistance or online live chat, we
provide instant telephone-based
support to assist our customers when
they need help.
Our approach has proven to be
successful – we are the software
of choice for over 600 law firms. In
addition, we have been the proud
recipient of the Solicitors’ Software
Users Award for 2016, 2017 and 2018
from the Institute of Legal Finance
We are proud that other software
companies in our market, most much
larger than us and some multi-national
corporations, consider us to be critical
Our support staff are trained in
finance, and often come from legal
backgrounds, meaning that we truly
understand what our customers do
and want to achieve.
We’re a technology company at heart,
but we are also real people with a
passion to deliver the service that we’d
want to receive ourselves.
firms to look at
taking on our
became not just
about explaining
the cost, but
the value
Raising the profile of Insight
Legal through exhibitions
and demonstrations

This article was sponsored by Insight Legal. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from The Rt Hon Theresa May MP.

The Rt Hon Theresa May MP's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By The Rt Hon Theresa May MP

This foreword from the then Prime Minister appeared in the 2018/19 Parliamentary Review.

British politics provides ample material for analysis in the pages of The Parliamentary Review. For Her Majesty’s Government, our task in the year ahead is clear: to achieve the best Brexit deal for Britain and to carry on our work to build a more prosperous and united country – one that truly works for everyone. 

The right Brexit deal will not be sufficient on its own to secure a more prosperous future for Britain. We also need to ensure that our economy is ready for what tomorrow will bring. Our Modern Industrial Strategy is our plan to do that. It means Government stepping up to secure the foundations of our productivity: providing an education system that delivers the skills our economy needs, improving school standards and transforming technical education; delivering infrastructure for growth; ensuring people have the homes they need in the places they want to live. It is all about taking action for the long-term that will pay dividends in the future.

But it also goes beyond that. Government, the private sector and academia working together as strategic partners achieve far more than we could separately. That is why we have set an ambitious goal of lifting UK public and private research and development investment to 2.4 per cent of GDP by 2027. It is why we are developing four Grand Challenges, the big drivers of social and economic change in the world today: harnessing artificial intelligence and the data revolution; leading in changes to the future of mobility; meeting the challenges of our ageing society; and driving ahead the revolution in clean growth. By focusing our efforts on making the most of these areas of enormous potential, we can develop new exports, grow new industries and create more good jobs in every part of our country.

Years of hard work and sacrifice from the British people have got our deficit down by over three quarters. We are building on this success by taking a balanced approach to public spending. We are continuing to deal with our debts, so that our economy can remain strong and we can protect people’s jobs, and at the same time we are investing in vital public services, like our NHS. We have set out plans to increase NHS funding annually by an average by 3.4 percent in real terms: that is £394 million a week more. In return, the NHS will produce a ten-year plan, led by doctors and nurses, to eliminate waste and improve patient care.

I believe that Britain can look to the future with confidence. We are leaving the EU and setting a new course for prosperity as a global trading nation. We have a Modern Industrial Strategy that is strengthening the foundations of our economy and helping us to seize the opportunities of the future. We are investing in the public services we all rely on and helping them to grow and improve. Building on our country’s great strengths – our world-class universities and researchers, our excellent services sector, our cutting edge manufacturers, our vibrant creative industries, our dedicated public servants – we can look towards a new decade that is ripe with possibility. The government I lead is doing all it can to make that brighter future a reality for everyone in our country. 

British politics provides ample material for analysis in the pages of The Parliamentary Review 
The Rt Hon Theresa May MP
Prime Minister