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Firm Dashboard

What is the Firm Dashboard, and why was it built?

Definitions

How are these metrics calculated? 

Frequently Asked Questions 

What is the Firm Dashboard, and why was it built?

The Firm Dashboard was designed to offer managers, administrators, and users with reporting permissions insights into the utilization, realization, and collection metrics of their firms.

To access, navigate to "Dashboard" on the main menu bar and click the "Firm Dashboard" tab.

The Firm Dashboard presents data by your desired year (for the year to date and 2 prior calendar years), and can be adjusted with the date selector at the top of the page.

Data is presented on a firm-wide basis (all users), or can be filtered to an individual user by selecting an individual from the user dropdown at the top of the page.

Definitions

Billable Work

The activities recorded in Clio Manage that will appear on an invoice.
Unless marked non-billable, activities in Clio are billable by default.
Expenses are not included for the dashboard calculations.

Non-Billable Work

The activities recorded as non-billable. These will not appear on an invoice. Learn more about tracking non-billable work here

Untracked Time

The remainder when subtracting any billable + non-billable time recorded from your firm's available hours (see definition below) for the selected time period. 

Available (Working) Hours

The total number of timekeeper (see definition below) hours available for work.
Clio uses an 8 hour available work day to make availability calculations.
An example calculation of available hours can be found here

Timekeeper

Any user on the Clio Account that has logged at least 1 billable or non-billable time entry in a month is recorded as a timekeeper for that month, and included in the available hours calculations for that month.

Billed: Nondiscounted

The nondiscounted portion of billable work that has been added to an approved invoice.

Billed: Discounted

The discounted portion of billable work that has been added to an approved invoice, including any activities with a rate of "0".

Note: Early Payment Discounts are reflected as credit notes, and not discounts.
(See FAQ below for details)

Unbilled & Draft Work

The billable work that has not been put on an invoice ready for payment (including any invoices in draft or awaiting approval.)

Collected

The total value of payments recorded against your billed work items.

The date on the Firm Dashboard is the date that the underlying activity was done.

Uncollected

The total value of billed work items (as defined above) without an associated payment recorded, and any credit notes.

Example: Bill is worth $2500
It was paid for $1000
It was credited for $500

Therefore the uncollected amount would be $1500


How are these metrics defined and calculated? 

Utilization

The utilization rate is a measure of staff productivity, and calculates how much of the day is spent doing billable work in comparison to the available hours in the day.

It is calculated as the billable hours worked/available working hours

To learn how available working hours are calculated, click here.

Each user can adjust their contribution to the firm's available working hours by changing their working days as outlined in this help article.

Here is what the Utilization widget shows:

Screen_Shot_2020-02-19_at_2.40.54_PM.png

How is the Utilization Rate Calculated?

The utilization rate is the calculated as the total number of billable hours / total number of available hours

eg.  100 (Billable Hours) / 172 (Available Hours) = 58% utilization

Realization

The realization rate is a measure of efficiency, and calculates the amount of billable work recorded that is actually put on an invoice, minus discounts.

It is calculated as: (the total number of billed hours - discounted hours) / total number of billable hours worked

Here is what the Realization widget shows:

Screen_Shot_2020-02-19_at_2.41.39_PM.png

Collection

Collection rate measures how much of the billed work has been paid for.

Reminder: The Firm Dashboard calculates all metrics based on the date of the underlying activity, and not the payment or bill date

The collection rate % is calculated as the total amount of hours collected on/total number of nondiscounted hours billed.

Here is what the Collection widget shows:

Screen_Shot_2020-02-19_at_2.42.15_PM.png

Frequently Asked Questions 

Who can access the Firm Dashboard in Clio Manage?

The Firm Dashboard is available to those on the Boutique and Elite(North America) and Loyalty(UK) account plans.

Owners, administrators and individuals with reporting permissions have access to the Firm Dashboard.

How often does the data in the dashboard refresh?

The dashboard automatically refreshes data on a nightly basis, but you can use the refresh button on the page to also trigger an update at anytime.

I mostly do flat rate or contingency cases. Is the dashboard applicable to me?

Although the rates are based on hours and will likely not be as applicable, the aggregate value (currency) figures include all hourly, flat rate, and contingency fees and can be a valuable tool for assessing monetary progress and health.

In addition, non-billable time accrued for any of these matter types will also be shown in hour format and can be a useful tool to assess where time is being spent

How are available working hours calculated for a selected time period?

The available working hours for a selected time period are calculated based on the sum of the timekeepers (timekeeper defined above) working days in that period multiplied by 8 (the number of hours in a work day). 

For example, if a firm is tracking 3 timekeepers, where two of them are working a full-time schedule of 21 working days a month, and one timekeeper is working a part-time schedule of 10 working days per month, their available hours for a given month would be calculated as follows:

[21 working days + 21 working days + 10 working days ] x 8 hours = 416 available hours in that month.

For selected time period, the total working hours are calculated as the sum of the available timekeeper hours for each month in that period. 

You can read more about adjusting each timekeepers' performance settings such as "working days" in this help article

How do you determine how many working days a timekeeper has for each month?

The amount of working days a timekeeper has for a given month are calculated based on the sum of how many working days per year they have defined in their account (steps to do this are in this help article) divided by 12.

What if I have a firm user who records very little, or only works part time and it's skewing my Utilization metrics?

A timekeeper's contributions to the firm's available working hours can be set by adjusting their "working days" setting as outlined in this help article

Learn more here.

What if I do work in one month, bill it in the next, and then collect on it the month afterward? Which dates are chosen to calculate the metrics for a given time period.

Only the dates recorded on the underlying activities are included in calculation of the metrics for a given time period. No bill dates, due dates, or payment dates are used.

Are discounts included in the Firm Dashboard?

Bill line item and overall bill discounts are factored into the realization calculations.

Any work with a rate of "0" is also treated as discounted.

You are able to see the amount of billed work, both nondiscounted and discounted within the realization section.

Are credit notes included in the Firm Dashboard?

Credit notes are seen as a write off in Clio. As such, in the Firm Dashboard, credit notes are included under the "Uncollected" data (defined above).

Are Early Payment Discounts reflected on the Firm Dashboard?

When the balance of a bill is paid in full during its early payment discount period, the discount converts to a credit note applied for that amount. As such, early payment discounts are treated on the Firm Dashboard as credit notes and therefore as:

  • "Billed: Nondiscounted" work in the Realization section of the dashboard during their period of applicability
  • "Uncollected" work in the collections section after their terms are met.

(Learn more about setting up Early Payment discounts here)

Is interest included in the Firm Dashboard?

In the Firm Dashboard, interest in not included in any of the data or calculations, as interest would be considered non-operating revenue, and the firm dashboard attempts to only give a view of the operating performance of the firm.

Are expenses or taxes included in the Firm Dashboard?

Expenses and taxes are not counted towards operating revenue, and as such are not included in the Firm Dashboard. 

How are partial bill payments reflected in the metrics shown?

You can learn more about how partial payments are reflected across Clio Manage in this help article.

For the purposes of the Firm Dashboard, the proportional quantity of a line item recorded as "collected" is directly related to the proportion of the monetary value that has been paid for.

(e.g. If a 1 hour, $1000 bill line item has $250 of payment associated with it, 0.25 hours and $250 are calculated as having been collected for that line item) 

How are Co-Counsel users reflected on the Firm Dashboard?

Activities recorded by Co-Counsel users are included in all the metrics on the Firm Dashboard when filtered by "All Users".
Their contribution toward the firm's available working hours calculation is the same as for any other user, and defaults to a setting of 260 working days per year. This cannot be adjusted.

Co-Counsel users cannot be individually filtered for however.

Learn more about how to add a co-counsel user here.

What currency does the Firm Dashboard use?

The Firm Dashboard uses the default currency in your Clio Manage Account. Learn more here. 

What time zone is used for the calculations of metrics and dates shown?

The Firm Dashboard calculates and displays all metrics in UTC time. (GMT+0)

Should I be aiming to have all my rates at 100%?

100% is often not a realistic target to strive for. Some unproductive, inefficient, and uncollected time is to be expected in most legal work and law firms.

An appropriate goal to set depends on your practice area, the type of matters you most often work, geography, clientele demographics, firm size, and more. 

Looking at your historical metrics and the data on the dashboard charts will give you a great starting point to reflect on where you might have room to improve, and you can set your targets accordingly. 

You can also compare your firm's metrics to the benchmark industry averages that are published each year in Clio's Legal Trends Report.

I see rates over 100%, inconsistent totals, or negative hour/value figures. Is something broken?

The dashboard makes calculations based on the recorded activities you have in Clio Manage. Editing/adding bill line items without updating a corresponding activity entry (learn more here), can result in billed/collected amounts that won't match up with billable totals.
This can also happen when turning on time rounding which affects the values of prior activities recorded, but not the prior billed line items.

The dashboard uses some assumptions such as an 8-hour work day, and which account users to include as timekeepers (defined above).

If line items are removed from bills that have partial payments already on them, that can cause the bill to have a negative balance and results in the collected amounts being larger the billed amounts.

All of these can factors can results in seeing negative figures, rates above 100%, and what may seem like inconsistencies between the figures on the dashboard that you might otherwise expect to equal each other.

Why is the data in the Revenue Report different than what I see on the Firm Dashboard?

The Revenue Report is designed to provide a financial snapshot for a time period, whereas the Firm Dashboard is designed to show the firm's operating performance over time.  Because of this, they are built differently in a few keys ways that may cause discrepancies:

1. Most commonly seen, the Firm Dashboard calculates all metrics based on the date of the underlying activity (i.e. billed/collected amounts are based on when the work was done), whereas the revenue report calculates items like billed/collected amounts based on when the bill was issued, or when the payment was received. (Learn more about revenue report date options here.)

2. The Firm Dashboard does not include interest, as described above in more detail in this FAQ, whereas the revenue report can include interest depending on the options chosen. (Learn more about interest on the revenue report here.)

3. The Firm Dashboard only uses data from recorded activities, whereas the revenue report may incorporate amounts from edited/added bill line items that haven't updated, or aren't associated with, a corresponding activity entry. (learn more here) 

I see some data that is possibly concerning. Do you have any tips on how to improve my metrics?

Clio has helpful resources on how to measure and take action from the insights, including: The 2019 Legal Trends Report, the 12 Data-Driven Ways to Improve Your Legal Practice blog post, and the Becoming a Data-Driven Law Firm Guide.

Will the Firm Dashboard be available on the Clio Mobile App?

The Firm Dashboard is designed to be viewed through your web browser, and is not available on the mobile app.

I don't see that data that I'm looking for or disagree with how the calculations are being done. How can I add additional data to the Firm Dashboard?

As future versions of the Firm Dashboard come out, additional data and metrics will be added.

If there's something that you'd like to specifically request, please reach out to Clio's support team via email/chat/phone so we can record your suggestion.

The data that makes up this dashboard and many additional metrics are available in Clio's reports, and can also be exported from the corresponding tables of information in the activities, bills, and payments sections of the product.

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