Every law firm in the world aspires to be knowledge-intensive. Larger organisations understand the use of advanced technology for firm co-operation and knowledge co-operation. However, many small-to-medium firms continue to struggle to find the right legal technology. Here is why IT support in law firms is an absolute necessity.
Any legal firm’s basic success parameters are their ability to satisfy their customers’ needs, research cases faster, generate better outcomes than a rival brand, and overall function a lot more efficiently than they used to. In 2021, lawyers are well versed in using basic software for automation but is that enough?
Various Reasons Why IT Support For Law Firms Is Required
According to a 2017 study made by the American Bar Association, 22% of law firms suffer from some sort of data breach. When it comes to protecting their clients’ sensitive information, a lapse in data protection can be absolutely back-breaking.
Therefore, simply having a robust IT support system is not enough. It is equally important to continue to update their data protection software to stay at par with the new kinds of threats that may be looking for that one way into your database and steal critical information.
With the digital world on the rise, physical borders are becoming less significant by the day. Companies with a vision to succeed in such a highly competitive and digital era have already invested in technology. It has become a part of their day-to-day functioning. Technology allows lawyers to be more efficient at what they do. It gives them an added advantage in the international market.
As the world becomes more aware, so do the clients. They wish to know exactly what is happening with their case. Providing greater transparency to a customer has become an asset than a liability. It allows the clients to trust their lawyers better. However, it is also important to protect the sensitivity of the case proceedings. Firms need to ensure that the data is only shared between the attorney and the client and is not leaked out in the open. An up-to-date IT support system not only ensures better transparency, but it also ensures security against foreign threats.
For lawyers, time is money and they can’t afford to waste it on maintaining spreadsheets. See what Aryn Caudillo, a Billing & Collections Specialist at Southern California-based Tredway Lumsdaine & Doyle LLP (TLD Law) had to say about how using eBillingHub, an e-billing software, helped his firm boost productivity:
“Implementing eBillingHub has been transformational. With 360-degree visibility, we’re seeing immense productivity gains with less time spent trying to track down payments and lower risk of write-downs, plus client work can be managed more strategically.”
Back in the day, lawyers used to manually go through all their records. They spent hours doing clerical work, before even preparing for their day in court. Now, if the right technology is used, complicated analyses can be done in a matter of minutes. Less time spent in the law library means more time for a higher rate of turnover for new cases.
One of the basic elements of being human is to make mistakes. We make mistakes all the time and learn from them. However, lawyers can’t afford to make as many errors as the rest of the common people, especially because it directly relates to the success or failure of their client’s case. The use of IT support in law firms may not eliminate the possibilities of oversight and inaccuracy completely. However, its implementation can significantly reduce the number of mistakes that an organisation may make due to human error.
Does The Size Of Law Firms Impact Their IT Requirements?
Some attorneys prefer to practice the law completely on their own (and not as a part of a firm). They cannot be expected to look after their clients’ requests and demands, and manage the backend, administration, and data management activities simultaneously.
Even though a firm may not consist of more than 12-15 attorneys at a time, an important aspect of working in a cohesive unit is to have a high level of communication between the team members.
When the number of employees ranges between a dozen and over a thousand, spread across multiple nations and time zones, IT needs become exponentially more important. This ensures safe communication and collaboration that doesn’t get restricted by physical space.
Regardless of how big or small, your law firm may be, the need to employ Information Technology has become absolutely essential in 2021. From protecting your customers’ information, to allow automation of backend services so that you can pay more attention to practicing the law more efficiently, IT takes care of everything you need to prosper.