HOW WE OPERATE
HOW WE OPERATE
Outsourcing operations is a significant decision for law firms and in our experience, the ability to trust, is the key deciding factor.
Our clients to do not outsource – they join a partnership.
With unrivalled expertise and experience, tlam has all the ingredients necessary for your trust in a streamlined, profitable and competent back office. Although our processes are hi-tech, precise and punctual, we do not operate at arms-length; we thrive by engaging with you on a regular basis. We operate virtually in house.
The main bulk of our operations happen at our head office in Gloucestershire. Here, our paralegal, accounting, billing and cashiering teams will be processing bills, payments, reconciliations, payroll and files. We act on your wishes only, going the extra mile for your needs.
OUR RCO TEAM
Driving the company’s dynamism, our Risk Compliance and Operations (RCO) officers have years of expertise between them in everything from technology, compliance, HR and finance – in and outside the legal sector.
We take compliance regulation seriously. Aside from regulation we must observe such as GDPR, we are actively conversant with SRA regulations and certified as an ISO27001 firm.
INFORMATION SECURITY AND DATA PROTECTION
Under ISO27001 and GDPR compliance, tlam proactively encourage the use of state-of-the-art communication methods and network arrangements. We are compliant with ISO27001 standards, meaning that we observe and refresh our cyber-security tools and protocols regularly.
We make secure and double encrypted connections to your networks via your preferred method. If either yours or our system is subject to a cyber attack our networking is arranged so that we would shut that connection off immediately, causing no harm to either party.
CONSULTING AND TRAINING SERVICES
We consult on a wide range of topics focused on the needs of law firms mainly, but we have also done work for public sector organisations and financial services. We bring in experts from outside the profession to bring fresh perspective on compliance issues such as GDPR, financial strategy and technology.
Our products have been tried and tested and are used by enterprise grade clients of our firms. Banks, construction firms and insurers companies trust our products when it comes to handling their data with our clients.
All our applications are hosted in the UK. Given some (albeit a little) uncertainty around the UK’s data protection arrangements with the EU, we have made sure all our data is stored in Data Centres across the UK for the foreseeable future.
Devil is Always in the Detail
In our business, detail is king. Thorough checking and looking deep into a system is always important. Sometimes, the smallest errors can result in significant discrepancies in reports, accounts and systems performance.
Data and Financial Risks are One and the Same
We process 1000s of data items each day and as most money is now transferred digitally using similar protocols as emails, documents and other pieces of data. With new regulations such as GDPR and our compliance with the ISO27001 standard, we have identified and measured the financial risks associated with data loss. In some cases the loss of data could be more financially damaging than mis-sending payments.
Putting the client first with great systems in place is what we aim to do best. Sometimes we must change our client’s thinking on how to do a certain business processes better – such as implementing push-pull mechanisms for payments and communication.
To put the client first, we need to put systems first too. Great infrastructure, standard procedures and an obsession with improving efficiency is at the centre of what we do.
Giving clients another pair of eyes
Communicating good and new information can give critical assistance to our clients. Whether that is financial information, new methods of cybercrime a new policy decision, an extra perspective can make a business-critical difference to our clients.
Lateral problem solving
New or unusual problems often cannot be solved in old or usual ways. For example, we paid out over 5,000 loans manually for a peer to peer lending company. They were very keen on getting the business started without the deployment of their draw-down software, and although this was something tlam hadn’t done before, we had done 1000s of property completions for law firms. We applied the same principle to the loans and had a 100% strike rate.
Our best is much more than the sum of our parts
Some of our clients use a full interdisciplinary team of accountants, cashiers, technologists, paralegals and FX traders. Working in an interdisciplinary way and across professions means we can solve all sorts of issues, standard in-house arrangements wouldn’t.
Change the rules of the game
tlam have firmly taken an agnostic approach to new regulations and look how we can enable our clients to comply with regulations on their terms as much as possible. We are investing in new advanced technologies to increase security, speed and accuracy. We will be making more announcements this year.
Headed up by one the legal sector’s most experienced financial directors tlam has navigated, restructured, reshaped and consolidated law firms’ finances in tune with complexities of market and regulatory conditions.
In 2008 founder Tina Surman started tlam following a mutual agreement with her employers, a prestigious white-collar crime and litigation practice in London.
Tina headed up their accounts department as Finance Director, the costs of which were increasing year on year. During and after the recession, the then managing partner and Tina Surman discussed the potential of taking the accounts department out of London and reducing the salary, overheads and rental costs. It made absolute financial sense.
Engaging in a new partnership, the firm entrusted their finances to tlam to manage outside London.
Tlam was set up and traded from a serviced office in Gloucestershire with 3 staff and one management accountant remaining in London to assist with building the core competences for both businesses.
Over time tlam were introduced to other law firms in London as well as firms UK-wide. Organically and by reputation, tlam has grown to supporting over 50 legal practices from three offices in 2017, to building working partnerships with legal software companies and financial services, and opening up an R&D department for advanced technologies.
That original partnership is still strong and because of tlam, millions have been saved in back office functions. More importantly this enabled our clients’ turnover to quadruple and profits to soar as they had the financial flexibility and professional freedom to expand and grow.
In some ways we do not want to be noticed. We are privileged to be working with firms who count celebrities, PEPs and institutional investors as their clients, alongside other public and private organisations with bespoke needs. We want to impart our knowledge and know-how with as little context as possible.
tlam is focused on delivering enterprise grade financial, operational and technological solutions without any fuss or megaphone marketing.
is lowercase for a reason.