Law firms need to get Digital Ready

We have now entered the so-called 5th industrial revolution industrialization, whereby humans work alongside advanced technologies and AI-powered robots to enhance processes within the workplace. Many industries have already benefited from digitalizing their processes from customer experience, and billing operations to data management. One area yet to fully benefit from digitalization is the Legal sector. The Legal sector in countries like the UK is enshrined in legacy and traditions. The key digital change that the majority of Legal Firms have decided to include is a website and the use of an elementary document management system. The overall approach of these legal firms has been to limit digital-related input to the fringes of the activities of their work. This has meant that although the Law Firms are able to be located using Google business and the website details their key services, the approach significantly limits true digital transformation potential.

Significant advances in digital technologies including cloud computing have increased the art of the possible. Additionally, the COVID pandemic impacted the legal sector very significantly. Not only do Legal Firms need to quickly adapt to the increasing use of video conferencing, and backlog of cases awaiting court dates they have to also tackle the increasing cost of indemnity insurance. Now is the time for Legal Firms to adopt a cost-effective tailored holistic transformational view on how digital technology can become an active part of their operations to provide a superior competitive service compared to legacy practices. Clients are also expecting Legal firms to provide a better service that is inherently convenient. 

Unlike other sectors such as hospitality and banking, the legal sector remains more hesitant to change. The reason for this is the overall approach to providing law services has followed a cultural monotone. Having a Legal Firm rooted in history gives the Firm major bragging rights. However, it is time now for legal firms to re-visit the transformational benefits of digital technology and improve customer experience since this will provide Law Firms with a new set of bragging rights. Post-COVID, there is an increased need for Legal firms to re-visit the way in which Legal work is carried out to ensure the customer experience is in line with other industries such as banking.

This is the time for Law Firms to move towards a hybrid approach to their traditional outlook of how a Law Firm should operate. This hybrid approach which is a combination of a traditional approach with a tailored entrepreneurial zeal will make all the difference. Law Firms are increasingly pressured to do more with less, maximize challenging pipelines, stay on top of increased regulation and manage costs with reduced revenue. The way forward to address these challenges is to ensure the digital transformation is at the heart of operations. Failing to adopt a tailored digital transformation will lead to market share being increasingly lost to Law Firms that provide a better digital service – technology exploitation will make a big impact on market share.

Legal Firms are very close to their Clients and are increasingly aware of the benefits a digital Legal Firm can provide are expecting Law Firms to reflect their expectations in their modus operandi. An example of this is e-signatures, which is an elementary level of digital addition to any Law Firm yet it can save days and save disruption to normal life. Other digital areas such as sharing online calendars with Clients, real-time updates on cases, document management, data management, e-training, and compliance to standards offer a real transformational change.  

Rather than then simply conducting a Google search on how to start your digital transformation journey, Law Firms are recommended to discuss their needs including some early steps they can take on this digital transformation with an IT consultancy company such as BondWest for a cost-effective solution.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *