Law firms can no longer fall behind in the digital transformation that other sectors and competitors are embracing.
Clients are looking for ways to engage with business online that is seamless and efficient. It is no longer partners that are winning over clients but how efficient the technology that law firms use.
Not only have law firms discovered this but legal tech start ups, alternative legal service providers and the Big Four accountancy firms are competing with law firms as they gain the backing from private equity firms.
Deloitte for example has invested heavily in new technology and isgrowing its in-house legal department. LegalZoom is a US company that allows subscribers to create legal documents through their technology without needing to obtain advice from a lawyer.
Legal technology started with tools such as document review and fast draft tools to professional consultancy services and it’s an area which is growing year on year as GC’s move from top law firms to legal tech start ups.
Previously lawyers and support staff would have trailed through hundreds of paper documents creating a need for storage space and taking more time to get through costing the client more money.
Gartner published a report in 2021 which looked at the rate at which labour intensive manual work performed by lawyers will be transitioned over to technology and estimates that by 2024 at least 50% of the work carried out by a law firm will be automated.
DocuSign for example has become the most common way of signing documents allowing signatories to sign anywhere at any time and allows for a more seamless process. Tasks like this used to require a member of support staff to be in the office to print documents and have all parties present while signing.
Unlike other sectors, the law firms has so far escaped drastic change to the way that it delivers services. The need to learn how to use AI tools and implement new technology will be the way that firms can bridge the gap and manage engagement with clients and staff as other sectors have already picked up on this and are leading the way.