I’m Kristin O’Neill, I’m the VP of Customer Success here at Paradigm and my journey in LegalTech started back in 2008 with Bill4Time. We were a small organization that grew year-over-year with little marketing & sales efforts. The product spoke for itself and when firms needed an easy-to-use time & billing tool, we knew we were the best product for them and word of mouth was how we grew.
Early legal tech landscape
Since those early days, the legal technology landscape has exploded in popularity with new offerings hitting the market each quarter. Looking back, it’s amazing to see where we’ve come and although there were hurdles along the way, the care we have for our staff & customers spoke volumes in how our success led us to where we are today.
In true startup fashion, we wore a lot of hats back in 2008. This came with its own challenges but the biggest advantage was that people had true ownership over their end goals and the collaboration between teams was always at an all-time high. Eventually, when Bill4Time became a part of Paradigm, we had more resources, more amazing minds to collaborate with, and more focus on where we saw the future of our products.
Understanding our unique customers
Over those first few months, we really focused on how we would differentiate ourselves from not only our competitors but from each other. This took time and effort to really understand our different customer bases, their unique needs, and what decisions would be the best for them. For each product, we had distinct client bases all with different needs and dedicated customer success teams. It was imperative that we focus on what works to support each of these client bases with an understanding that it’s not one size fits all. Learning from past experiences it was easy to see what works and what does not and quickly change gears to produce more quality service for our customers.
Putting our clients and staff first with our PeopleFirst mission
Once we squared away our differentiators, it was time to scale. Scaling over the past two years has been steady but it didn’t come without challenge. When the pandemic hit in 2020, we had a lot of uncertainty. The one focus we did have was “do anything we can to help our people.” When Paradigm was formed, we introduced our “PeopleFirst” mission which encompasses putting our clients and staff first above all. Without them, we wouldn’t be Paradigm.
We dedicated time to identify our values, work through our own personal goals, and finally create strategic visions for our products. This meant, in some part, scrapping the old ways and starting over. Implementing new strategies, introducing new products, training new teams, all with a common goal. This was not an overnight venture and something that will never be “finished.” Scaling for Paradigm means setting a stage to enable and support growth and that is what we are most proud of.
With Customer Success, positive experiences can leave a long-lasting impression. When was the last time you had an amazing experience with customer service? Did that experience push you to shop at that store more, or buy that product, or tell your friends/colleagues? We strive to offer the best experience possible for our customers and in return, have received thousands of raving fans.
It’s not always about helping customers quickly, but in a way that shows that we are listening and care. The biggest lesson we can learn is taking the time to understand what our clients really need. How they utilize our system, what they struggle with, how to best educate, and how we can continue building the best product for them with new innovative technology. With our teams, it took a pandemic to learn more about flexibility and how that increases productivity. In this new remote world, we’ve learned that it takes effort to keep ourselves engaged and how important it is to stay connected.
There were both positive and negative aspects of moving our whole company to remote. The obvious positive changes were that it really allowed staff to be more flexible. We had staff adjust their working schedule to align more with their day-to-day lifestyle. Other staff moved out of state to be closer to family or for better real estate opportunities. We also started hiring anywhere in the U.S. which really opened our talent pool to amazing candidates. As an organization that was based in four main locations, we are now spread out in almost 20 states! We adapted quickly to make sure we were collaborating effectively while remote as well. We created task forces to focus on the health of our teams and how to get closer to our communities. With this, we were able to focus a lot more on our client’s needs. Training became more accessible and easier to manage and as we grow we continue to improve every aspect of that client experience.
It’s obvious to say I wish we knew what the future looked like, however, I wouldn’t want to change a thing. The growth our teams have gone through over these past few years is humbling. Seeing teams triple in size, advance in professional development, leverage resources across departments, and build a strong base of collaboration amongst our colleagues is why we do what we do. The lengths that our teams will go to make sure our clients are heard and supported is all I can ask for. To see such positive change, especially during difficult times is a testament to all the people involved. I take a lot of pride in how our organization is shaped today and the values we stand for.
There’s so much to look forward to in Paradigm’s future. I’m hopeful that we’ll get back to a place where we can be in person again. Both with staff for training and bonding to continue the amazing culture we’ve built thus far as well as meet-ups with our clients. Paradigm both internally and externally has grown so much and we don’t plan on stopping anytime soon. We’re going to continue pushing the boundaries in legal tech as we strive to be the best organization we can be.
If you’re looking to join the team, check out our current openings here.