find the latest legal job
Part Time Risk & Compliance Officer
Category: Other | Location: Brisbane QLD 4000
· Brisbane City · Flexible Part Time Hours
View details
Infrastructure Lawyer/SA
Category: Construction Law | Location: Sydney CBD, Inner West & Eastern Suburbs Sydney NSW
· Global elite law firm · Dedicated Infrastructure team
View details
Property Lawyer
Category: Property Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· 12 Month Contract · Diverse Work
View details
In-House Legal Counsel (Mid to Senior)| Regulated Markets (Energy and Gas)
Category: Generalists - In House | Location: Melbourne CBD & Inner Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Full PD on Request · Exciting High Impact Role
View details
Family Lawyer
Category: Family Law | Location: Eastern Suburbs Melbourne VIC
· Boutique Firm · Great Reputation
View details
Firms falling behind the tech curve

Firms falling behind the tech curve

Law firms risk being five or more years behind the rest of the corporate world if they don’t embrace technologies that many of their clients are already using, according to a technology expert.

Ben Wightwick (pictured), lead consultant at software provider HighQ, told Lawyers Weekly that firms think that adopting certain technologies or legal process outsourcing is innovative, but these tentative steps only “paper the cracks”.

The reality, he claimed, is that most law firms are several years behind the Big Four accountancy firms when it comes to technology adoption.

“In the last three years the legal landscape has changed dramatically and law firms are suddenly realising that the old way isn’t going to be the right way in the future,” he said.

 “A few will [succeed] and it will be those that learn to work smarter, not harder, and change.”

Wightwick will have a chance to tell firms about the risks of slow technology adoption at the Sixth Annual Janders Dean Legal Knowledge & Innovation Conference in September. His session is called Legal Technology Innovations – No longer anti-social, which focuses on how social, mobile and cloud technologies are influencing legal practice.

Adding to Wightwick’s credibility is his stint with London-headquartered firm CMS Cameron McKenna, where he delivered successful IT projects as a business analyst and project manager.

Based on his experience in the legal field, Wightwick claimed Australian firms are relatively receptive to new technologies. He added, however, that technology adoption is being driven by pressure from clients and the demands of tech-savvy young lawyers, rather than a firm’s own initiative.

This reluctance by firms to trail blaze is also Wightwick’s greatest challenge when spruiking HighQ, a collaborative cloud-based software.

“It’s getting better, in fact we have 40 of the top 70 global law firms as clients, but many firms in some jurisdictions still see the cloud as a risk and, therefore, it’s still a hurdle we have to overcome,” he said.

Wightwick is hopeful, however, that the message is getting through that online collaboration, both internal and external, whether through social, mobile or cloud technologies, is allowing law firms to operate more effectively and efficiently.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Firms falling behind the tech curve
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Law Council of Australia
Nov 21 2017
LCA calls for urgent adoption of ‘game-changing’ recommendation
The Law Council of Australia has urged for the immediate adoption of a key recommendation put forwar...
Sally Wheeler
Nov 20 2017
ANU College of Law appoints new dean
A distinguished legal academic and the former head of law of a higher education institution in Irela...
Nov 17 2017
It's time for politicians to commit to eradicating domestic violence
The national shame of domestic violence cannot be left unaddressed, writes Christine Smyth. ...
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...