As every sector of the industry is undergoing a digital revolution then why should the legal sector be left behind? Legal services are the root savior of any industry and thus, law firms need to keep up with the expectations of the modern world of digitalization.
In comparison to any other business, the opportunities for law firms are even greater. Newly evolved digital technology can drastically transform the delivery of legal services, the day-to-day jobs of many lawyers, and the flexibility experienced by others. The delivery of services has been transformed with easy access to a larger audience.
NEED FOR DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION
In this fast-paced world, those that adapt first would be the ones who will reap significant rewards. Markets across every industry are transforming according to the shifting demands and expectations of the people. With the help of digital technology, lawyers can focus on adding value to clients through consultation and the development of strategy.
However, there are both pros and cons of this digital investment. Law firms have to maintain a proper balance between security, compliance, transparency, customer interactions, workflows, and productivity for the audience that has practically no room for failure.
About 70% of firms fail in the process of digitization so one has to be really cautious and fully prepared to face this transformation. A law firm needs to plan, focus on outcomes, and research for the right IT partners and embrace the cultural changes necessary to make any digital project a success.
DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION HAS ITS PROS AND CONS
If used wisely, digital transformation has sources to solve most of the logistical problems it creates. For instance, high investment costs transform into long-term cost savings. Processes that appear complicated at first actually deliver more controlled and easier management solutions. Digitalization of the records poses high-security risks, but it also enables trackable and accountable file sharing with much higher levels of security as compared to using paper documents.
The problems faced by the law firms are three-layered. Firstly, they have to manage the technical complexities of procurement, installation, and migration. Secondly, they need to overcome the cultural changes required to turn an IT investment into a fruitful consequence. Lastly, they have to deal with the management of the technicalities and security of the new IT ecosystem.
Before moving forward, the decision-makers must understand the possible results and the legal service solutions offered by digital technology.
DIGITAL TECHNOLOGY IS A PATH, NOT A DESTINATION
The main expectation from the technology is the desired outcome. The demand could be changed in client interactions, team collaboration, speed of processes, or a complete transformation in the daily responsibilities.
But before investing in technology, you must think about how it is going to be used later. Only by assessing outcomes, the right investments can be made and the necessary cultural change can be implemented. Remember, technology is simply a medium it should not be the destination.
You must look at the possibilities that are available and the actual skill base of your existing team. Focus on investing in training and also try to remain honest with yourself if you think that a particular investment is impractical. A lot of the technical aspects of maintenance can be passed to IT partners. This is a wise option for companies with little or no past IT experience. Although, in the end, it is your existing staff that will make use of that technology in their daily jobs.
You may often need to hire new employees and restructure departments to transform your operations into a digitally transformed business. Make sure to execute those plans before investing in IT infrastructure. Because, if you can’t use your IT to deliver the desired outcome, it would be a waste of time and money.
WHAT DOES DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION OFFER TO YOUR FIRM?
Along with the changed demands of clients, the next generation of lawyers will have different expectations about the mainframe of work. A lot of applicants make employment decisions according to their ability to use cloud applications to create an appropriate working environment. To hire the best and skillful talent law firms would need to meet the digital expectations of the modern workplace.
Digital technology has the potential to both disrupt and transform the legal industry. In 2018, about 80% of law firms identified IT investments as their top priority, alongside 23% of firms that were already undergoing digital transformation. As of 2020, online legal service providers reached a value of $8.5 billion.
A CHANGE IN THE LEGAL ECOSYSTEM
A whole new race of competitors has entered the industry, a large percentage of which are already occupied with digital tools. Digital technology is even allowing teams smaller in size to deliver commendable services with less individual expertise. This is changing the ecosystem of legal service and is already online to change further. Work that previously required a team of skilled lawyers and approximately days or weeks to complete can now be completed by machine learning algorithms in much less time. Initial case review can be carried out with an app, and cases can be assigned on metrics-oriented review.
Clients register on the app and they can choose lawyers available in their region. There are also other filters and parameters offered in the app that a client can use according to their specifications such as hourly budget. And once the client has chosen their desired expert, appointed lawyers can help in assisting their clients via a secured and safe digital channel. Those channels can either be chat, audio, or video calls. These channels are encrypted and make sure that the client-attorney privileged information remains protected and confidential. And once the whole session is complete and clients are provided with their desired services; lawyers are then paid instantly through the app.
The definition of lawyer and legal services are now changing with the Digital transformation. Lawyers are now able to conduct themselves more effectively in a much more independent work environment.
TO WRAP IT UP
The chance to use technology to offer faster and better services to the clients at more affordable prices creates a huge market difference for the firms who adopt the technology early. Owners can now set up firms with no prior IT experience to build and securely maintain even the most complex digital infrastructure. This is a discussion on which every firm is struggling to get started, as they are concerned about cybersecurity and maintenance risks. Either way, this is the era of transformation. Law firms that are quick to grab the opportunity now will be better prepared for the upcoming challenges.
Building a law firm with the digital necessities of the future today will help you to be prepared for the greater challenges of tomorrow.