find the latest legal job
Corporate/Commercial Lawyers (2-5 years PAE)
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Specialist commercial law firm · Long-term career progression
View details
Graduate Lawyer / Up to 1.5 yr PAE Lawyer
Category: Personal Injury Law | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· Mentoring Opportunity in Regional QLD · Personal Injury Law
View details
Corporate and Commercial Partner
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: Adelaide SA 5000
· Full time · Join a leading Adelaide commercial law firm
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Sydney NSW
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
In-house Legal Counsel & Commercial Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Melbourne VIC
· Providing lawyers with flexibility and control over when they work, how they work and who they work for.
View details
3 new digital realities lawyers need to embrace

3 new digital realities lawyers need to embrace

Bruce Coombes

Digital disruption provides plenty of opportunities for law firms to outperform their competitors, writes Bruce Coombes.

Digital disruption is changing the legal profession in a variety of exciting ways.

A number of new products have emerged that promise to replace overly manual or human processes. These include e-discovery tools, electronic courts and document automation, to name a few.

The success of these products is likely to depend on how user-friendly they end up being, whether they can actually do what they promise to the same standard as the legacy system they’re replacing, and whether they can do so without any unintended consequences.

Instead of worrying about individual products, however, it can pay to take a step back and consider the trends and attitudinal changes driving the emergence of these new products.

Below are three realities of the new digital world that lawyers will need to embrace, if they want to avoid being left behind.

1. SEO is absolutely king

Everything, everything, everything is online these days. Clients are increasingly finding legal representation by simply Googling their specific circumstances. So it’s essential for your firm to come up on page one every single time.

Because the Google algorithm is increasingly intolerant of firms trying to influence it artificially, one way to organically affect searches is by regularly publishing high-quality, relevant, up-to-date content on your website. This might involve blogs or news pieces about current court cases, industry trends or legislative changes.

It can also help to be featured on other highly credible sites, such as news and other industry sites with high levels of traffic. The blogs you feature on your own site could be pitched to other sites for potential external publication.

2. Apps are on the up

Utilising mobile applications can transform the way your firm operates.

One such useful app is Evernote Scannable. It can replace traditional desktop scanners, allowing staff to scan documents from any location with just a mobile phone. The app automatically rotates the documents and makes them text-searchable as well – imagine the efficiency that could create!

Another valuable app is Chrome Remote Desktop. It lets lawyers access the desktop computer in their office as long it is turned on and connected to the internet, removing the need to upload sensitive and privileged documents to the cloud or onto USBs, and enabling lawyers to work remotely.

3. Flexibility and customer-centricity is the new norm

Customers are becoming far less accepting of rigid processes when dealing with businesses, and legal firms are no exception to this. Meeting this growing need is a matter of creating as much flexibility as possible for your clients when engaging with your firm.

One option could be as simple as replacing face-to-face meetings with Skype calls. Another could be to create online client portals, so clients can access all of their legal documents and other information from the one place, regardless of where they are.

Finally, you might even consider offering a range of payment options, allowing clients to choose whether they would like to pay in one lump sum or in monthly instalments, as can be done using professional fee funding.

The point is that it’s all about the customer. And a happy customer means a happy firm!

Bruce Coombes is the founder of QuickFee.

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

3 new digital realities lawyers need to embrace
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
Dec 14 2017
International arbitration and business culture
Promoted by Maxwell Chambers. This article discusses the impact of international arbitration on t...
Papua New Guinea flag
Dec 14 2017
World-first mining case launched in PNG
Citizens of Papua New Guinea have launched landmark legal proceedings against the country’s govern...
Dec 14 2017
Punishing offenders twice pointless, politicians warned
The president of the Law Society of NSW has warned legislators from other states about adopting cont...
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 & ...