Under the Radar, But Perfectly Legaladerantuser
Business North Harbour, August 2016 – One of these is Aderant, a company specialising in business management software for law and other professional services firms. From its main US base, Aderant supports nearly 3,200 clients in more than 30 countries, representing 77 of the top 100 global law firms and more than 88% of the Am Law 200. And the New Zealand operation, situated in North Harbour, is the company’s largest development centre.
The local operation has grown 30% year on year for the last ten years, says William Davis, Aderant’s vice president of development, from his Corinthian Drive office.
William was as one of the original software architects for the Oracle-based professional management and accounting package, Keystone, and has continued with the company since Aderant (then Solution 6) acquired Keystone – a world-class practice management system – in 2002.
William says the company flies somewhat under the radar in New Zealand, despite its international profile, because the country doesn’t have many law firms of the size they work with.
“Because of that, we don’t really need to actively market ourselves here – except as an employer,” he says. “It’s difficult to find senior people with the skills we need.”
For that reason, Aderant’s local operation is a significant recruiter of graduates – 65% of their staff came to them straight from university. And William says most stay, benefiting from a significant training programme that takes them from graduate status to associates (complete with a fun “capping ceremony”).
Why would a large global organisation continue to work with a team based in NZ? Yes, the exchange rate is attractive to the US, William says, but there’s more to it than that. “They keep expanding the NZ operation, not just because it’s cost effective with the exchange rate, but also because we provide a high quality service,” he says. “They also like our education system, our collaborative communication style, the way we enjoy interacting with people…there’s an attitude that runs through how New Zealand companies approach things, that’s attractive on a global basis.”
It’s not just New Zealand-born workers who reflect that attitude, he adds. “Less than half of our team are Kiwis, but the new people we have coming in from other countries embrace our way of doing things, and are an asset to our operation.”
Aderant moved from their original offices in Symonds Street to Albany when the area was still in the earliest stages of development. “There was nobody here,” William says. “Just ASB and us, and the strip mall across the road.”
And with the massive development that he’s seen in the area, what does he make of the push to position North Harbour as the IT centre of this country – New Zealand’s answer to Silicon Valley?
“I’d love to see something like that happen, but there needs to be concrete action to back up the ambition – maybe tax incentives of some kind, a significant investment in fibre infrastructure…”
In the meantime, Aderant’s New Zealand team will continue to grow and thrive.
Aderant, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, is a global industry leader in providing comprehensive legal business management software for law firms and other professional services organizations. Aderant is a market leader in technology solutions for practice and financial management, ebilling, knowledge management, business intelligence, matter planning, calendaring and docketing. Aderant is an established and trusted partner with its versatile and innovative technology solutions, superior customer service and reliable implementation process. Aderant operates as a unit of Roper Technologies, a constituent of the S&P 500®, Fortune 1000® and the Russell 1000® indices.
Aderant Public Relations