Coyne Learmonth LLP is a Merseyside-based Personal Injury practice, specialising in Road Traffic Accident (RTA) claims and credit hire / replacement vehicles. The firm has grown steadily in recent years, now employing 32 staff.
Julie Twist, one of the firm’s three Partners, talks us through her experience of Eclipse and Proclaim.
When was Proclaim implemented, and why did you choose the system?
Coyne Learmonth LLP implemented the Proclaim Case Management system in December 2006, rolling the software out to all of our fee earners. We also implemented Proclaim Accounts, giving us a fully integrated Practice Management System.
I had used Eclipse’s previous generation of Case Management software, ‘CHASE’, at my previous practice and was impressed at how easy it was for non-technical fee earners to get to grips with it. I wanted that same level of ‘buy-in’ at Coyne Learmonth LLP, and I was pleased to see that Proclaim retained the earlier system’s level of user-friendliness and usability.
Six weeks from signing the order with Eclipse, Proclaim was in, up and running, replacing our legacy practice management system which was showing real signs of strain under volume caseloads.
What day-to-day benefits do you see from Proclaim?
We deal exclusively with Personal Injury claims, and deadlines can be absolutely critical. Proclaim’s integrated diary and reminder features ensure that our fee earners never miss a key date. We can even set up ‘warnings’ which escalate tasks to partners if a certain action, or group of actions, is in danger of becoming overdue.
Proclaim drives cases forward in a reassuringly consistent manner ? the system’s workflow capabilities are very flexible which means that we can channel fee earners down a set progression path, or we can provide more free reign depending on the type of cases being managed. This flexibility also lends itself to client contact, and we can (for example) tailor Proclaim to automatically send SMS text messages to our clients at key case stages. This type of communication, whilst being very simple for us to set up, is of huge value to our clients who feel they are being kept ‘in the picture’ and fully abreast of proceedings.
Have you implemented any functionality using your own in-house resources?
Coyne Learmonth LLP has been extremely proactive in the area of risk management and anti-fraud. We have used Proclaim to build in a ‘checking’ system which greatly reduces our exposure to risk.
For example, Proclaim automatically checks client, third party and witness postcodes to verify identity. In addition, accident locations can be cross-referenced against known ‘accident staging’ hotspots to ensure that we do not accept cases from the increasing number of ‘crash for cash’ gangs.
This use of the system has been instrumental in us generating better relationships with case referrers, and has actually placed Coyne Learmonth LLP in amongst the market-leaders in terms of fraud control.
Do you use Proclaim for ongoing management reporting facilities and statistics?
In line with our anti-fraud measures, Proclaim’s inbuilt reporting toolset is extremely beneficial in allowing us to generate management information on potential staged accidents and new geographic trends. This safeguards us and helps to ensure that the ratio of quality cases we take on remains very high.
In addition to this, we regularly analyse our supplier (case referrer) relationships to see which organisations are sending us the best cases, and which organisations are actually costing us in terms of profitability. This kind of management information is utterly invaluable in the (often low margin) Personal Injury arena, and helps us to remain highly competitive and financially stable.
How does Proclaim fit in with your overall business ethos?
Our ethos is very much one of ‘plain speaking’ and ‘transparency’. By using Proclaim to tightly manage our cases we have a fantastic high-level view at any point in time. This means that we can communicate honestly and openly with our clients ? and referrers ? regarding cases or indeed any case-related operations.
Proclaim also ties our fee earners together in that having one centralised database makes sure that we all have the same understanding of case progress and ‘what happens next’. This fosters an open atmosphere and means that there are no internal barriers when it comes to sharing information. This in turn breeds a ‘high detail’ culture where mistakes are very rare and quality is always high.
Proclaim cements our position as one of the leading players in our sector, and I fail to see how any firm can manage (let alone prosper) without using case management to its fullest. As a good recent example, at the time of writing the Ministry of Justice is implementing changes to the RTA claims process as a whole, and without good internal IT systems it will be impossible to generate revenue and survive.
Proclaim has been the perfect solution for us, and I regularly recommend it to my friends, colleagues, and peers!