Automation has been around for quite a long time; except, for a long time, it has been mainly associated with more sectors like manufacturing, and physical labour. However, automation has made its way into the world of professional services – including the legal sector. Work is increasingly digitized nowadays – what with the ubiquity of computers and smartphones, the internet, and cloud-based services.
Not only are most of the tasks and processes that the average solicitor performs on a daily basis taking place digitally, but so are the triggers for those tasks and processes, which opens up the ability to automate certain areas of one’s work. We discussed this with a London-based tech company, TechQuarters, who have experience providing business IT support London based solicitors rely on. We spoke with them about how solicitors can benefit from automation.
Examples of Automation for Solicitors
- Contact Management – For solicitors, particularly those running a practice solo (or with minimal staff), managing contacts and leads may be quite difficult. Many solicitors nowadays are turning to customer relationship management (CRM) systems designed specifically for legal work. These CRM systems often include automation capabilities that can make a solicitors client work easier.
- Email Automation – Tying in closely with the previous point, managing communications and relationships with clients can be made easier for solicitors if they use tools such as email automation. These tools allow solicitors to schedule communications with clients.
- Notifications and Updates – Notifications are in fact a form of automation that has been widely used for decades now. Most people take them for granted, solicitors can leverage notifications to keep themselves alerted of important events in their work schedule.
Benefits of Automation for Solicitors
Automation in the legal sector has a lot of potential, and solicitors can stand to benefit from this technology considerably. When we asked TechQuarters about it, they offered a number of benefits that legal professionals should consider.
First and foremost, automation enables legal professionals and organisations to utilize their staff more efficiently. They will no longer need to dedicate staff to low-value, routine work – such tasks and workflows can be delegated to automation software, enabling organisations to dedicate more of their staff to high value, high risk work with potential for greater return.
Speed & Efficiency
It is well-worth considering that once a machine has been programmed to execute a certain task, it can do so infinitely quicker than even the fastest human worker could hope to. The process of setting up processes for automation may seem like more effort in the moment, but in the long term, the speed and efficiency it offers is definitely worth it.
Accuracy & Consistency
Tying into the previous point, once the rules, triggers and actions in a task or process have been programmed for automation, the program executing them will never divert from them. This consistency and accuracy can alleviate a lot of stress around ensuring that routine tasks are completed on schedule, and without error.
Free-up Staff Time
When we spoke to TechQuarters, they stated that one of the primary benefits of IT support for solicitors, from their experience, has been the time organisations get back thanks to technology that streamlines their operations. This is precisely what automation can do for solicitors, by delegating workloads to automation software, and enabling staff to spend more time on other work. In this way, the overall productivity and efficiency of an organisation increases.
So far, a lot of these benefits have been around the ability to dedicate more time to high-risk, high reward work. The flipside of this benefit is that a solicitor can actually reduce overall risk by automating routine work; although this type of work tends to be the lowest risk, ensuring that it is executed correctly every time can go a lot way to managing company risk.