Legal departments have gone through a rapid digital transformation in the last couple of years. It has become integral to the productivity and integrity of organizations that want to stay competitive and grow in today’s technologically driven world.
The COVID-19 crisis forced companies to work remotely, leading to a quick digital transformation that changed the way legal departments function in the long term. Many of them now use digital tools and legal technology to boost their productivity, improve operational processes, and find ways to bring more efficiency to the department.
Here are some ways in which digital transformation is increasing efficiency for legal departments:
Digital transformation has gone from concept to reality
We are at the peak of digital transformation. For many years, it was a rather futuristic concept and one that seemed to be longer to process. Remote working has fast-tracked it and rapidly making it a part of our lives.
In addition to the accelerated digital transformation brought on by COVID 19, The Government of Canada continues to plan a digital roadmap. In doing so, Canada continues to recognize the importance of digitization and is also helping small and medium businesses utilize their full potential by providing support through digital technologies. With the importance of technology dawning on Canada and other countries, digital transformation is no longer a concept but our current reality. The pandemic has accelerated the transformation, causing fewer technologies, such as augmented reality, virtual reality, and the Metaverse, to be introduced.
Specifically, the legal industry has also adopted technology to help streamline its processes and enhance productivity. Remote working has made people more open to exploring online tools and software to help organize and store legal data, collaborate online, and even use data from their software to analyze what is working and what can be improved.
Legal departments are using the right digital tools to train their team members
Many legal departments realize that digital is here to stay and are using digital tools to train their new and existing team members. According to Gartner, “legal departments are predicted to increase their spend on technology threefold by the year 2025.” The end of 2021 allowed companies to update their technology where required, and many legal departments took the opportunity to audit their processes and tech.
Furthermore, departments started realizing the importance of cultivating the right skills to make the team more efficient. They have been implementing and continue to implement relevant digital tools and strategies, helping team members work efficiently, whether remotely or in a hybrid situation. Many legal departments are also embracing social technology to reach out to the newer generation of lawyers while staying digitally relevant.
Some legal teams have a specific technology committee that is dedicated to overseeing all the digital aspects of the department. Their duties include overseeing legal technology, analyzing relevant data, finding ways to streamline processes digitally, and implementing best practices for cybersecurity.
Digital transformation has created room for hybrid/remote working
Legal departments can work remotely with digital transformation, allowing them to collaborate with team members through secure software and virtual meetings. While some team members miss the office environment, many have realized how working remotely or having a hybrid working situation has helped them create a work/life balance.
Part of this also leans on the company. A workplace that can offer flexible work hours, hybrid/remote working situations, and support where required is more aligned with the work/life balance that employees are looking for. This support comes in the form of listening to your employees, as well as providing the right tools for them to work efficiently. Listening to your employees if and when they have concerns and addressing them appropriately is key. In a remote/hybrid work environment, it is important to check if your employees feel supported technologically by making sure they have all the required tools and resources to work comfortably and efficiently.
In summary, digital transformation has opened doors to many conversations in the legal industry. While its onset came on rapidly due to the pandemic, legal departments were proactive and able to adapt to the new norm quickly. Technology departments worked together to ensure data was secure when working remotely, and legal departments came together to find ways to streamline processes using tech and making them more efficient. Finally, companies ensured their employees felt supported and comfortable and continue to do so as the digital umbrella expands with time.
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