Lawyers are good at identifying and minimising risk, while innovation is about taking risks and getting the rewards for doing so (if everything goes well, that is).
But things are changing in the legal industry, and innovation is the key to success. A big opportunity in legal innovation at the moment is automation.
It’s fascinating to see what innovative law firms are doing with automation. Here are the top four trends:
1. Efficient internal processes
Innovative firms are using automation to streamline their repetitive internal processes, like client onboarding, letters of engagement, and AML, as well as repetitive legal work like drafting advice, contracts and other legal documents, and correspondence.
Automating these processes means they are able to remove bottlenecks and save time, so they can spend time doing what matters – whether that’s knocking off early to hang with the kids, serving more clients, or upskilling and getting more of the type of legal work they love to do.
Check out this case study about how Australian law firm, JHK Legal, uses automation to work more efficiently, remove bottlenecks, and save time.
2. Serve clients online
Innovative firms use automation to impress their clients by interviewing their clients online. Clients love being able to provide the information their lawyers need online, when and where it is convenient for them. If they don’t know an answer to a question they can come back to the online interview once they know the answer and carry on.
Letting clients serve themselves online saves these innovative firms time too – no more back and forth with clients trying to set a suitable time to meet or chat. Plus these lawyers save time by not attending yet another client meeting just to collect information. An added bonus is they never forget to ask a client a particular question – an automated online interview means every question is asked, every time, even if they’re having a frantically busy day.
Check out this case study about how Emma Stanley Law is using automation to serve clients online.
3. Acquire new clients
Innovative firms interact with potential new clients via their law firm websites, to add value and build trust. Offering interactive online interviews that produce free, customised reports or documents for website visitors is becoming a popular way for these firms to attract new clients. So is selling affordable legal documents and services online from their websites.
Acquiring clients online is an efficient way for these innovative firms to get new clients, because using digital marketing to drive traffic to their websites is affordable, measurable, and best of all, it is scalable. This sort of marketing means less of the time-consuming marketing lawyers are used to, like going for coffee, and networking groups and events, which have far less impact and reach.
Check out this case study about how Michael Heron QC’s innovative online dispute resolution service, CODR, is using automation to serve and acquire new clients online.
4. VIP client libraries
Innovative firms use automation to make the lives of their VIP corporate clients easier by creating bespoke precedent banks and libraries for them. VIP corporate clients love the convenience of creating contracts and other legal documents within minutes, instead of waiting days or weeks for their lawyer to do it.
Automating clients’ repetitive legal work for them means innovative law firms can save time on doing this work, while still charging clients for it.
Check out this case study about how Sydney law firm, Kinny Legal, is using automation to set up VIP client libraries and serve clients online.
What worked yesterday may not work tomorrow
Bill Gates once said “success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose”. Just because your firm has been successful in the past doesn’t mean it will be successful in the future.
Automation will give your firm a competitive edge and allow you to better serve your clients with efficient, convenient legal products, processes, and services.
How will you use automation to give your law firm a competitive edge?
To find out 5 easy ways to automate your repetitive legal work to save time and earn more, download the free guide The Law Firm Automation Playbook. You’ll discover how to use automation to reduce stress, impress your clients, and make your law firm way more efficient and innovative.