Table of Content
- 1.Top trends that drive the adoption of LFA
- 2.How Legal Workflow automation simplifies the Legal profession?
- 2.1.LFA helps attorneys save time, avoid mistakes, and improve efficiency
- 2.2.LFA helps the Legal industry broaden its talent pool
- 2.3.Low-level task automation allows lawyers to focus on more important tasks
- 2.4.No-code and low-code approaches dominate modern legal automation
- 2.5.Reduces the lawyer's administrative load
- 2.6.NLP helps in the extraction of critical information from thousands of sources
- 2.7.Multiple ways LFA is influencing the Legal Practice
- 3.Key Considerations while adopting Legal Workflow Automation
Workflow automation can greatly benefit the legal industry by streamlining repetitive tasks, increasing efficiency, and reducing errors. By automating routine processes such as document preparation, data entry, and communication, legal experts can spend more time focusing on higher-level tasks that require their expertise.
Not just that, Legal workflow automation can help to increase productivity and reduce costs, making it an attractive option for law firms and legal departments. With the ability to customize and automate workflows to fit specific needs, workflow automation can help legal professionals to work more effectively and efficiently, ultimately delivering better service to clients.
Let’s move further and explore some of the best Legal workflow automation trends.
Top trends that drive the adoption of LFA
Here are five trends that are currently driving the adoption of legal workflow automation:
1. The quest for greater efficiency: In the hyper-competitive legal marketplace, firms are always looking for ways to do more with less. Automation can help law firms to streamline their operations and free up staff time for billable work.
2. The need for better client service: In an increasingly competitive market, clients are demanding better service from their law firms. Automation can help firms to provide a higher level of service by ensuring that tasks are completed accurately and promptly.
3. The rise of alternative fee arrangements: With the growth of alternative fee arrangements, law firms need to be more efficient in order to remain profitable. Automation can help firms to manage their workloads more effectively and avoid billing mistakes.
4. The challenge of Big Data: As the legal industry increasingly relies on data-driven decision-making, law firms need to be able to manage large volumes of data effectively. Workflow automation can help firms to collect, organize, and analyze data more efficiently.
5. The growth of mobile and remote work: With the rise of mobile and remote work, law firms need to be able to manage workflows across multiple locations and devices. Workflow automation can help firms to keep track of tasks and deadlines, regardless of where staff members are located.
With the advances in technology, there's no reason why law firms can't be entirely virtual. This means that lawyers can work from anywhere in the world, and clients can be serviced remotely.
This trend is already well underway, and it's only going to become more prevalent in the coming years.2. The Rise of Artificial Intelligence*
Artificial intelligence (AI) is another area where we're seeing increasing adoption in the legal industry.
AI-powered solutions are being used for tasks such as contract analysis and predictive coding, and this is only set to increase in the coming year.3. The Growth of Alternative Legal Service Providers*
Alternative legal service providers (ALSPs) are an increasingly popular option for firms looking for cost-effective legal services.
In 2022, we expect to see more firms turning to ALSPs for tasks such as document review and eDiscovery.
The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the trend toward remote working, and this is likely to continue in the coming year.
Firms that offer flexible working arrangements will have a competitive advantage in attracting and retaining top talent.5. The Rise of New Technologies*
New technologies, such as blockchain and quantum computing, are set to have a big impact on the legal industry in the coming year.
How Legal Workflow automation simplifies the Legal profession?
The Legal Workflow Automation (LFA) trend is growing in popularity due to the increased use of digital tools and devices for legal work.
These tools help attorneys save time, avoid mistakes, and improve efficiency. LFA offerings can include software that automates common tasks such as document review or case management.
LFA helps attorneys save time, avoid mistakes, and improve efficiency
1. Virtual law offices are also on the rise due to the benefits they offer lawyers: decreased travel costs, accessibility from anywhere in the world, and synchronized file storage across multiple platforms make this type of practice more affordable and efficient than ever before.
2. The usage of artificial intelligence (AI) continues to grow within the legal field as practitioners attempt to find new ways to minimize errors and create a more streamlined process overall. AI-enabled technologies have been used for everything from transcription services to drafting pleadings/dockets with accuracy rates surpassing 95%.
3. The increasing demand for cyber security has led many legal firms to invest heavily in automation technology designed specifically for this sector. This includes solutions that protect data against breach or theft, monitor compliance with regulations, and aid litigation through proactive evidence gathering.
4. The legal industry is increasingly reliant on data analysis and machine learning for tasks such as document screening and case management, which is why these technologies are being used more frequently in law firms.
LFA helps the Legal industry broaden its talent pool
AI enables the legal profession to expand its talent pool by including more individuals. It significantly lowers administrative time and responsibilities while increasing efficiency. The legal sector may employ AI to move qualified applicants to the top of the hiring funnel. Ultimately, it helps in the recruitment process by recognizing eligible applicants early.
Low-level task automation allows lawyers to focus on more important tasks
Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are assisting in the advancement of legal process automation. Lawyers may free up time for more strategic work by automating low-level chores like document screening and contract analysis.2. AI-assisted contract review*
Contracts are a key area where AI can be of tremendous assistance to lawyers. By automating the contract review process, lawyers can save time and avoid errors.3. Blockchain-based smart contracts*
Smart contracts are legal contracts that are encoded on a blockchain. This enables them to be executed automatically without needing manual intervention. Blockchain-based smart contracts have the potential to revolutionize the way businesses operate, by making contractual agreements more efficient and tamper-proof.4. Virtual law firms*
Virtual law firms are becoming increasingly popular, as they offer a more flexible and cost-effective alternative to traditional brick-and-mortar law firms. By leveraging technology, virtual law firms are able to provide legal services to clients located anywhere in the world.5. Alternative legal service providers*
Alternative legal service providers (ALSPs) are shaking up the traditional law firm model by offering a more cost-effective and efficient way to deliver legal services. ALSPs typically make use of technology and non-traditional staffing models to provide high-quality legal services at a lower cost.
No-code and low-code approaches dominate modern legal automation
The legal sector is currently in the throes of great resignation. The increased interest and hunger for automation over the past two years may help alleviate some of the industry's distress, first, by assisting a team with limited resources in handling a large workload and second, by enticing potential new team members inspired by the use of automation technologies in tackling such mundane, repetitive, or administrative duties. No-code and low-code approaches dominate modern legal automation.Workflow Automation
In the legal industry, tasks are received, reviewed, and completed according to well-defined, well-structured procedures called workflows. Consequently, automated legal workflows are the procedures wherein technology is used to facilitate, structure, and streamline the execution of duties. Legal workflow automation has many of the same advantages as contract and document automation, including saving time for lawyers, reducing the number of mistakes made by employees, increasing productivity, and providing better service to clients. Legal intake, instructing law firms, conducting RFPs, matter management, spend management, regulatory and compliance workflows, and so on are all examples of repetitive, frequent, low-risk activities that could benefit from automation.Artificial Intelligence
While specific industries and occupations are eagerly anticipating the change and creativity brought on by advances in artificial intelligence (AI), others are anxious about what the future holds for them in a world where AI is ubiquitous. The legal sector most likely lies in the middle. Since AI is still a developing and widely misunderstood tech field, most legal industry applications align with the more established field of AI-enhanced intelligence. McKinsey, Deloitte, and the International Legal Technology Association (among others) have all released publications containing projections about how AI will change the legal sector in the next three years.
Reduces the lawyer's administrative load
One of those things is the introduction over recent years of legal tech, including legal workflow automation. I couldn’t put a precise number on it, but the automation of many of the tedious and time-consuming administrative tasks that used to take up so much of a lawyer's time has made our practice so much more efficient and productive. As much as saving time, any lawyer will tell you that they feel far more energized and motivated with the burden of admin removed!
NLP helps in the extraction of critical information from thousands of sources
Contract review solutions are more and more leveraging advanced AI techniques to understand the meaning of the text (rather than compiling statistics about keywords). As a result, they can help organizations extract key information from thousands of complex contracts containing disparate and diverse terminology, even if the contracts are in multiple languages. These new tools go far beyond extracting simple entities like names, dates, and amounts. These new solutions can extract and analyze complex sentences because they solve the problem of language ambiguity (they interpret the meaning of an ambiguous formulation by putting it into context) and of language variety (they can correctly classify terms and clauses that are semantically similar, even if they do not use the same wording). As an example, such Legaltech solutions empower companies to quickly generate summary abstracts and spreadsheets and populate a company's contract management software with automatically extracted data.
Another trend is towards AI tools that can be quickly customized by business users with small sample sets, and those continuously learning through human-in-the-loop interaction: the regular feedback given by business users improves the accuracy of results over time.
Multiple ways LFA is influencing the Legal Practice
Workflow automation is affecting all industries. the legal industry which has been subject to evaluations on how technology will change the practice.
Automation and digital technology will influence the legal practice to increase efficiency and convenience in the following ways;
Virtual legal assistance: AI-powered chatbots in the legal industry are growing rapidly. Large law firms are implementing virtual legal assistants to increase responses to internal questions in legal departments conveniently and efficiently.
Voice technology: Effective and personalized has also become a necessity. Personalized greetings and software integrations help cut down manual documentation for better functionality.
Virtual law practice: Remote working has also come to the legal industry, enhancing emergency response. With relevant mitigation of issues such as privacy and information sharing, and virtual law practice is evolving into one big thing.
Automation: Automation is increasing to enhance saving time and faster execution and tracking of progress in administrative tasks. Document automation is also high on the rise in legal practice. Email templating for standardized communication is also high.
Artificial intelligence: It has the transformative effect of speeding up client service. AI is helping review case documents quickly and accurately, and identify other files with similar details, which is very important in legal practice.
Workflow automation is a key tech trend for the legal industry. Legal workers deal with large volumes of documentation on a daily basis, and workflow automation helps them improve productivity by up to 20% and ensures high accuracy of legal documentation. Automated workflows are widely used in legal document management, employee time tracking, and billing.
In our legal document management software projects, we leverage the SharePoint platform that offers extensive capabilities for legal workflow automation. SharePoint-based workflows can help legal workers quickly create documents like summons, complaints, and contracts using templates and saved fields or clauses via questionnaire-based automated guides. The platform also supports non-linear and multistep workflows for document approval, collecting signatures, and more.
Key Considerations while adopting Legal Workflow Automation
While many firms are already leveraging some of these emerging technologies, there is still plenty of room for improvement. In fact, according to a survey conducted by PwC, nearly half of the respondents believe that AI adoption within their organizations will increase in the next three years. This shift toward automation is expected to lead to increased efficiency, better client experiences, and improved productivity.
But while it is critical to keep up with the latest developments, it is equally important to recognize the long-term implications of adopting new technologies. Firms that fail to prepare now risk falling behind competitors that are embracing these innovations. For example, a lack of understanding of data privacy regulations could prevent a law firm from effectively utilizing AI tools. By taking steps today to understand key issues like data protection, security, and governance, law firms can ensure that their practices are prepared for the challenges ahead.Legal workflow automation
The legal industry is increasingly moving towards workflow automation. This includes everything from document assembly, billing, case management,
discovery, e-discovery, and even litigation support. In fact, Singleton Law Firm, LLC predicts that the legal sector could save $2 trillion over the next decade by adopting workflow automation technologies.
Workflow automation allows lawyers to automate repetitive tasks and free up time for higher-value activities like client interaction and strategizing.
However, it isn't just about saving time; it's also about improving efficiency, and accuracy, and ultimately increasing revenue.
In addition, there are many legal practices where automation makes sense, such as law firms with large teams of paralegals, where automation helps reduce errors and increase productivity.
For example, a firm might use legal process automation software to automatically generate and send out invoices. Or, they could use a document
assembly solution to help lawyers assemble contracts and other documents faster.
There are several reasons why workflow automation is important for legal professionals, including:- Improved customer experience:
When you're able to provide better customer service, you'll attract more clients. And, when you attract more clients, you'll make more money.- Increased revenues:
Lawyers spend less time doing manual tasks and more time focusing on strategic planning, billable activities, and client interactions. As a result, lawyers can charge more for their services.A greater level of collaboration within law firms
The pandemic has highlighted the important role that technology plays within legal practices. While many lawyers are working remotely, some still need access to information about clients, colleagues, competitors, and cases. As a result, it’s become increasingly important for lawyers to collaborate effectively.
According to a survey conducted by WestLaw, nearly three-quarters of respondents say that increased collaboration during the pandemic has improved productivity. However, while most lawyers agree that increased collaboration has been positive, almost half of those surveyed say that collaboration has actually decreased.
What’s causing this disconnect? Among respondents, there appears to be confusion over what constitutes collaboration. For example, one respondent
said that collaboration includes everything from sharing documents to discussing strategy. Another said that the best way to collaborate is by having conversations via video calls. A third said that it depends on the type of case.
While collaboration certainly requires face-to-face interactions, it doesn’t necessarily mean that lawyers must meet physically. In fact, according to another survey, nearly four out of five lawyers now use videoconferencing platforms like Zoom, Skype, WebEx, GoToMeeting, and Cisco Connect to conduct meetings. And while these platforms aren’t perfect, they do provide a number of benefits.
For instance, using a tool like Zoom allows you to see whether someone else is looking at the screen, and therefore potentially avoid eye contact. This can help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Additionally, since Zoom allows you to record videos, you don’t have to worry about losing or misplacing anything. You can also keep track of how long people talk, and even pause the recording to add comments.
Another benefit of using a collaborative platform like Zoom is that it enables you to quickly send files and presentations to multiple participants. This can be helpful if you want to distribute key materials to everyone involved in a particular project.
Finally, a tool like Zoom provides a secure environment where you can chat privately with colleagues without worrying about being overheard. This helps ensure that sensitive information isn’t accidentally shared with others.Data security should be a priority
Law firms must take steps to protect client data now because the threat of cyberattacks is likely to increase over the next few years. As we approach 2022, the number of global cybersecurity incidents during the second half of 2021 surpassed those of the entire year of 2020.
The threat of ransomware attacks is growing, too. In July, the city of New York had its Law Department breached, exposing the personal information of thousands of employees and partners. The incident underscored how vulnerable law firms remain to cyber criminals.
Given that they hold sensitive data such as clients' PII or confidential details surrounding specific matters, law firms are particularly susceptible to ransomware attacks. These types of threats could put their ability to provide legal services at risk.
As a result, many firms are investing in technology solutions designed to help prevent these kinds of attacks. But even with robust defenses, there's
no guarantee that hackers won't succeed. And while the costs associated with losing access to critical data might seem high, they pale in comparison to the potential financial losses that could result from a breach.
For example, the cost of a major data breach can easily exceed $1 million per record, according to the Ponemon Institute, a research firm focused on
digital privacy and security issues. Even small hacks can cause significant damage. A recent survey conducted by the American Bar Association found
that lawyers experienced a median loss of $25,000 due to a data breach.
To mitigate the risks posed by ransomware attacks and other cyber threats, law firms must implement several key strategies. First, they must ensure that they're taking advantage of the latest technologies to keep their systems secure. They'll also want to make sure that they've implemented adequate policies and procedures to govern their use of cloud computing and other external resources. Finally, they'll need to train their staff about best practices for protecting data.
In addition to implementing these measures, law firms should consider hiring a dedicated IT team to monitor and manage cybersecurity across their organizations. This way, they can proactively identify vulnerabilities and address problems before they escalate into larger-scale attacks.Communication options for clients
Communication is one of the key elements of good practice. Clients want to know what’s happening; they don’t necessarily care about how it happens.
But they do care about receiving clear information and being able to make decisions based on that information.
The best way to ensure you communicate effectively with clients is to plan ahead. This includes making sure you have a strategy in place, and that you
implement it consistently across every aspect of your practice.There are four main ways to communicate with clients:
- Regularly scheduled meetings
- Phone calls
- Postings on social media.
According to employee retention specialists, A wider range in career paths, growth in alternative legal service providers (ALSPs), disruption due to artificial intelligence, and a lack of clarity around the future of law firms have all contributed to an uncertain career path for new lawyers.
Retensa, a global provider of employee retention solutions, found that 41 percent of respondents agree that there is too much uncertainty about what their career path will look like within their firm. Furthermore, 65 percent of respondents say that they feel overwhelmed by the number of choices
available to them in terms of job opportunities.Innovating for the future
Workflow automation has the potential to significantly improve the legal sector by eliminating repetitive procedures, boosting productivity, and decreasing mistakes. Legal practitioners may devote more time to higher-level tasks that need their knowledge by automating mundane operations such as document preparation, data entry, and communication. In this blog, we explored some of the best Legal workflow automation trends that are making a huge difference.