Lawyers turning to new technology for growth

UK's law firms are looking to improve client experience and cut costs, and they're looking towards new technologies to achieve these goals, a new survey suggests.

The survey, released by managed services provider Redcentric, says that 74 per cent of law firms in the UK are looking to invests in new technologies in the next two years. More than a third of these (36 per cent) plan on doing it before the end of 2016, which Redcentric sees as a signal of urgency.

For more than a third (35 per cent) of law firms, improvements to the client experience is a top priority, followed by the need to cut costs (31 per cent).

“These results throw up a big question. How can law firms balance the need for new technology with the general economic pressures they currently face? In most typical businesses, 70 per cent of IT budget goes on day-to-day maintenance, so there is little spare for a more strategic investment to transform their business for the better,” says Mark Halpin, New Business Sales Director, Redcentric.

Business is booming, however, with 48 per cent of law firms expecting business growth within a year. But – the growth might be hindered by legacy IT systems. For more than a third (36 per cent), existing systems are not agile or scalable enough to support further growth.

For 34 per cent of respondents, the need for improved agility is the main driver.

“But increasingly law firms have discovered that working with a managed services provider to ensure everyday management can free their IT team to help move the business forward. When they do need new solutions the same provider can help tailor best of breed solutions, and do so urgently, without the lead times involved when implementing new technology in-house.”

'These findings match LawPanel.io's experience, with much demand for cloud based services, and apps and widgets specific to individual legal disciplines,” says Mark Kingsley-Williams, founder of LawPanel, the advanced IT service for lawyers.

“Launching this week at the annual meeting of the International Trade Mark Association in Orlando, Florida, we've had a great reception, especially from UK law firms who are leading the way globally in adopting new technologies. They are leading the way in adoption, and recognising that new tech creates new opportunities and makes possible new service offerings and revenue opportunities.”

According to Kingsley-Williams, new elements such as big data and artificial intelligence will transform the legal landscape in the coming years.

“Big data and AI are set to significantly impact on law firms of all sizes over the coming decade and LawPanel will be at the vanguard with easy to adopt but powerful applications suitable for boutique practitioners through to firms with offices internationally”.

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