How Legal Technology is transforming legal teams for the better
Aimee Forde, Senior Consultant
Effective legal technology has played a vital role in the consistent evolution of the legal sector, particularly in times of crisis and uncertainty.
While the age of automation has been upon us for several years, the legal industry has been hesitant to adopt and implement new technologies into their workflows. For one simple reason – success was measurable without it.
However, when the pandemic hit, firms were forced into technology adoption to stay operational and competitive. Thankfully, it paid off!
Fast forward two years and the benefits of legal technology are more apparent than ever before. Here are the top ways legal teams have evolved and leveraged the benefits.
Improved Time Management
By streaming contract workflow with technology and using video software to speak with clients, agreements can move forward promptly, and time spent on redundant or arbitrary tasks has been minimised. This saves legal teams a significant amount of time in the long term. And, of course, time = money.
Perhaps the most time-consuming responsibility for legal teams is the management and manual review of contracts and related documents. Something that can now be dramatically streamlined with technology. – Matt Gould, Head of Legal Transformation at ContractPodAi
Increased Flexibility and Remote Communication
Remote working has presented a challenge for lawyers, especially regarding physical documents and information storage in servers. As a result, adopting technology to combat remote working challenges has been extremely important.
The development of innovative digital technologies has helped law firms accommodate flexible working. Such technologies include e-signatures, smart contracts, practice management systems, CRM systems and advanced video conferencing software. Which has also aided communication between teams.
Other technologies that played a key role in facilitating the transition to remote working include smart boardroom technology, cloud computing, workflow, document management systems and legal case management systems.
Using such technological tools has allowed distributed teams to streamline their law firm workflow solutions, increase efficiency and respond to their clients faster when working from home.
Better Client Service
Today’s clients expect lawyers to harness a new set of skills for service delivery and grasp technological innovations. Because of the shifting legal market, creating happy clients is predicated upon a successful client service process.
After investing in new technologies, such as online research software, artificial intelligence, automated document drafting and editing and the latest updates to precedents and citations, lawyers have found that they are more equipped to educate clients on their cases. In addition to this, legal tech enables lawyers to set realistic expectations, so no one gets surprised.
Updating software can also help firms maintain and expand expertise with less effort and conduct research in less time. This efficiency means lawyers can deliver a more personalised and positive client experience and provide quick answers and guidance. Ensuring that all-important competitive edge and memorable working experience.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology is growing in popularity within the legal sector. A good CRM can help to nurture clients, build stronger relationships, and improve communication. – Amberlo
Output and Workflow
Lawyers need to be able to communicate quickly with colleagues and clients while working together to complete complex legal work efficiently. We have found that those utilising software to help manage legal matters have improved workflow and output. They have achieved this by building step-by-step processes, creating team checklists for routine tasks, and setting deadlines with auto reminders.
Legal tech has a notable impact on organisational output, and law firms are reaping the benefits. In a Bloomberg Law survey, four out of five firm respondents reported an increase in the volume of work produced by their organisation due to the use of legal tech, while 73% of corporate legal department respondents reported a volume increase. Furthermore, 71% of firm respondents even stated that tech improves work quality.
Better Risk Management
The average Fortune 500 company can have as many as 40,000 active contracts at any given time, and the consequences of one little mistake can be high. So law firms utilising legal technology and making artificial intelligence (AI) part of the contract management process have a second ”helper” to make sure documents are correct.
With such automation, legal teams can have unlimited access to — and control over — contracts, as well as, mitigating risks, cutting costs, and freeing up their time for higher-value, strategic work.
As law firms continue to scale, so will the need for legal technology supporting their individual growth — and inevitable expansion. Although there is still a lot to come in the way of tech advancements, after experiencing the benefits first-hand, it appears firms are more willing to invest.
“The advance of technology is based on making it fit in so that you don’t really even notice it, so it’s part of everyday life.”
– Bill Gates