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Global law firm deploys edge strategy on Platform Equinix

Image: Adobe Stock / Connect world

Global law firm HFW has collaborated with Equinix to build out its digital edge in key markets including Dubai, London, Hong Kong, Melbourne and Paris.

As a critical element of their digital transformation journey, HFW has distributed its IT to be closer to customers and employees, which has enabled the firm to increase the overall quality of experience (QoE) for these end users.

Additionally, by leveraging Equinix for its data centre needs, HFW has been able to free up valuable internal resources, redirecting those resources to the development of value-added services on top of its platform which directly impact the customer experience and the firm’s bottom line.

HFW is a 136-year-old law firm that is undergoing IT transformation to prepare for the next wave of growth.

The London-based firm has more than 600 lawyers, including 180 partners, based in 19 offices across the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Asia-Pacific

As one of the first UK-based law firms to expand internationally, HFW now generates more than 60% of its revenue outside the UK and has seen its international revenue triple in the past seven years. 

As a result, the company needed a global interconnection platform like Platform Equinix that provides the scale and reach to keep up with the pace of change and get the firm digital ready.

As a key piece of its digital edge strategy, HFW has deployed Equinix Performance Hubs in select geographic markets.

Equinix Performance Hub implementations leverage WAN optimisation and peering technologies to eliminate inefficient, costly WAN routes, network choke points and variable QoE.

Equinix’s direct and secure connections avoid the public internet and its inherent congestion and risks. This is especially important given the large file sizes that legal firms like HFW transfer between offices and the associated bandwidth required on their network.

By adopting a distributed architecture, HFW also addresses increasing data privacy and other regulatory requirements and general data sovereignty concerns.

As compliance rules such as the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) require that organisations understand and control where their data resides, distributing applications through an interconnected network can support data residency and the data governance requirements.

Times they are a changin’

The practice of law and the delivery of legal services have become separate entities, with paralegals aided by technology and automation to offer new capabilities.

Data-based insights are replacing traditional consulting, while consumers demand outcome-based billing and a responsive experience.

According to the global study, ‘Future Trends for Legal Services’, produced by Deloitte, 52% of legal services purchasers want technologies to be used and shared on integrated platforms.

To compete, legal services firms are adopting a distributed interconnection platform that integrates digital and industry ecosystems, streamlines legal processes and adapts value chain architectures for a better customer experience.

Today, the legal industry largely leverages private cloud, but it is expected that the industry will shift to hybrid cloud as the technology matures and the industry accepts these practices.

Karl Strohmeyer, chief customer & revenue officer at Equinix commented,It is great to see a forward-thinking firm like HFW strategically thinking about the way IT can add value to the customer experience and become a true differentiator for its businesses.”

“HFW placed control points within Equinix colocation hubs to locally interconnect clouds and networks and to redefine its digital capabilities—reducing costs and latency while significantly improving speed, user experience and capacity.”

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