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| 5 minutes read

How do firms successfully roll out Passle?

The video above is a great example of a typical question we get asked here a lot at Passle.

Bringing any software into any firm is a difficult prospect. When you consider the unique stakeholders and challenges of a law firm or consulting business things become even more intimidating.

Yet over the past 5 years, Passle has successfully rolled out time and again with the world's most challenging firms under the most difficult circumstances.

You can see the stories of successful Passle rollouts here on our case studies page.

In this post, we look to explain how that rollout success is achieved for Passle in order to show the lessons that we've learned that are applicable to rolling out any software at your firm.

A successful rollout is really driven by four key factors:

  • The alignment
  • The process
  • The team
  • The pilot group
  • The business case & ongoing success

The alignment

Any software your firm invests in must be in service of the firm's goals and strategy. Any successful rollout begins with aligning with those goals, tailoring best practices to fit your circumstances and, crucially, gaining buy-in from a sponsor at the firm's highest level.

At Passle our clients often have the goals of expanding particular business units, becoming more well-known in a particular area, supporting high-performing sector groups and key client programs, bringing capabilities the firm sees as a competitive advantage and a whole host of other strategic imperatives.

The key is that we align with these from the outset, with the support of senior leaders.

The process (5-week Proof of Value)

Having a clear, fixed process that has been honed and optimised over many years has been the biggest factor in the successful rollouts of our platform.

No matter what size of firm we work with, whether an 800-person firm or an 8,000-person firm, we always launch in a small and manageable way - usually with around 10-20 lawyers. 

The initial goal of the rollout is twofold. 

  1. Firstly, we need to demonstrate that behaviour change is possible, and that busy experts will use the platform well. 
  2. Secondly, we need to show the value of that use, when the platform is used it has a benefit to the firm that far outweighs the cost of the platform and the time invested in it.

These two things need to be achieved in as short a space of time as possible. 

To maintain momentum and to ensure that there is a smooth uptake we will almost always try to achieve both of these in 5 weeks, in many instances we can achieve it earlier than that but 5 weeks allows a good balance between adoption and instant impact.

The team (Passle Client Success)

Nothing gets done unless someone makes it happen. Giving a piece of technology to a group of people and expecting them to use it effectively is a fast route to a failed rollout.

Training sessions, competitions, coaching, technical support and simple advice are all essential for users to feel comfortable and capable of engaging with the software.

Most firms do not have the time or personnel to do that successfully on their own, however. Where Passle succeeds is through our Client Success team. This proactive and dedicated group of experts are on hand throughout the initial rollout and beyond to ensure that the rollout succeeds.

The first time doing anything complex like this is the hardest. Our Client Success team have executed successful rollouts at hundreds of firms, so they are able to offer calm and experienced support.

"Without the handholding of the Passle team of Sarah and Eugene, the constant motivation for me as the lead on the project internally, motivation for the lawyers and the tools and the suggestions and the tips, I don't think we would have flown quite as high as we did. 

It's been so appreciated."

Catherine Knock, Head of Marketing Communications at Hassans

read the full testimonial

The pilot group (The Authors)

"Our lawyers will never adopt this software" is a recurring comment from those coming to know what Passle is. Yet time and time again the most difficult and conservative firms in the world adopt the software with an ease that surprises their management.

We always try to launch with a pilot group of 10~20 authors, typically lawyers and consultants. This seems to be a sweet spot in terms of the number of users on the pilot. There are enough people that should a few be otherwise too busy to engage they are not overly missed, yet there are not so many that organising and communicating with them becomes difficult.

This core group of initial users and their successes over the first 5 weeks become the business case and the inspiration for the rest of the firm to come on board with the initiative.

It is important that this group is a mix of people with a good chance of being supportive of the initiative and also those that will be difficult to bring on board. Often the biggest advocates of a rollout begin as the strongest detractors. Bringing challenging people on board early as part of a mix with supporters gives the best possible chance of turning those doubters into believers.

"Our lawyers absolutely love it. It's such easy software to use and quite often our lawyers will come to us and say they want to do a Passle, which is to them, synonymous with doing marketing.

So I think that's a sign of, how popular it is across the firm."

Gemma Lyon, Head of Marketing Communications at Macfarlanes
read the full testimonial

The business case & ongoing success

Success begins in the first 5 weeks of a rollout, but it is long-term adoption that defines real success of a rollout process. Is the program still going 12 months, 24 months, 36 months later? Has the program turned into a self-sustaining success that just needs small corrections every now and then?

The key to the transition from short-term success in proving behavioural change comes through building a business case that makes the benefit of the platform clear to all the users and all the stakeholders in the program. Your users need to know that every minute of their time has been valuable for them and for the firm. Your management and stakeholders need to know that their investment has been worthwhile.

To do this, our client success team spend time collecting data points on who is reading, how the platform is impacting the wider business and which people and posts are worth emulating. We'll also put particular emphasis on pulling out the small anecdotes such as a meeting request or a placement in a journal that offer a clear value for the firm but won't show up on a report.

"It's been amazingly simple for us to adopt Passle. Initially, Passle was viewed as a very new technology for our firm, so I expected it to be a real challenge to implement. However, the team has been incredibly helpful in creating an environment where adoption is effortless." 

Jason Barlow, Director of Marketing & Business Development at SE-Solicitors
read the full testimonial


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