The launch of Bloomsbury Law Online
I started my Legal Publishing career at Sweet & Maxwell and remember publishing my first book with a floppy disk component in 1996. I remember the excitement: the age of electronic publishing had truly arrived! 20 years on and the landscape is very different.
While legal information is readily available at the click of a button, whether free of charge or paid for, the challenge for legal information providers is to ensure that their online service is wheat amongst an awful lot of chaff. As we come to launch Bloomsbury Law Online we are keen to ensure that ours provides nothing but wheat.
We have learnt the importance of how content is delivered and accessed, and how support is provided. Online platforms must be:
Simple – it should not require customers to have formal training before they can get the best from them.
Performance – search results need to be near-instantaneous, documents need to load quickly and the site needs to be available 24/7 regardless of whether an organisation contains 5 or 500 users.
Adding value – customers must be able to derive efficiencies from their use of electronic products and demonstrate added value to their clients.
Open – it is important for customers to be able to integrate content from online services into their internal workflows intuitively and at zero additional cost.
Good customer services regarding technological and content queries are key. Online services must save the customer time and money. Customer queries need to be addressed and answered quickly. If not, what should be an easy competitive advantage falls by the wayside.
So, where does this leave Bloomsbury Professional and Bloomsbury Law Online?
We are very excited to announce the launch of Bloomsbury Law Online this month. The service will include 21 online services with others to follow over subsequent months, and will be available to buy individually or in bundles.
We are confident that we have a simple, agile and effective online platform, as we have already been supplying online services, successfully, to the UK tax market and to the Irish law and tax markets for the past five years. More recently we have launched in the Scottish Law and Tax markets and our debut law online service, in family law, was launched in July – all using the same platform.
In all this our pricing is transparent and is available to see on our Blog – www.bloomsburylawonline.com/subscribe – and we pride ourselves on providing excellent customer services with a 95% approval rating.
Market needs and expectations have moved on since my first foray into electronic publishing in 1996. We know the electronic publishing landscape will continue to move, evolve and shift, but in what direction? The opportunity for legal information providers lies in tracking up-coming developments and ensuring that they are best placed to harness each new possibility as it emerges. There is no question that exciting times lie ahead, so it’s a case of watch this space…
Andy Hill, Head of Legal Publishing (UK), Bloomsbury Professional