The face of the legal industry is changing. Gone are the days of brick and mortar offices, $5000 suites, and reception areas with famous art and gourmet snacks. Technology is changing how attorneys do business. Overhead is decreasing and companies are increasingly allowing and even encouraging telecommuting.
Here are five major ways that technology is redefining the legal industry.
- Customer Service
With decreased overhead, legal services are becoming more accessible to clients. Text messaging, cell phone-based office lines, and videoconferencing are now the new normal. Clients and attorneys alike aren’t bound to the 9-5 model.
Imagine a stressed-out client needing information at 4:00am, they can simply send a text message and receive an instantaneous response.
Potential Clients outside of major cities can get face-to-face access to attorneys via videoconferencing without having to brave traffic and long commutes, while attorneys reap the benefits of expanding their market.
Imagine a busy attorney with only five minutes between meetings, they can now respond to multiple clients without having to schedule 30 minute in-person or telephonic appointments.
Case Management Software is the single most powerful tool to increasing law firm efficiency. The best case management programs allow for customization, integration, and data tracking. Customization is central to building refined processes.
The best feature of a fully integrated system is when email, calendars, and client notes all flow in one easy to navigate space. Deadlines, case notes, and messaging are at your fingertips.
Data tracking—because when you know, you know. The more information you have, the better you can serve your clients, analyze trend sand manage cashflow.
- Digital Marketing
Did you know that some people place adds in phone books? Better yet, did you know phone books still exist? If this is your marketing strategy, it may be time to embrace the wonders of Digital Marketing.
Digital Marketing spans a wide array of strategies from AdWords and SEO to website design to social media ad campaigns. With a bit of research and probably some help from a tech team, you can reach your target client population and continue to reach them day in and day out.
- Office Culture
Yoga pants. Need I say more? Telecommuting reduces costs of overhead. It saves employees time and promotes productivity through better work-life balance. Some people even claim that cutting down on commuting is better for the environment.
Working from home allows employees freedom to structure their day to best their needs. It cuts down on office distractions and interruptions. Flexible work options improve morale and decreases stress according to a study of 19,000 employees.
- Relationship Building
It may seem counter intuitive that technology improves relationships, but it does. Technology allows relationships to span any distance. Your CEO can be in Alaska while your CMO is Maine. You can create a referral network nationwide, by simply joining online communities for other professionals in your industry. The opportunities for new and exciting professional relationships abound. Whether its email listerves, or referral networks, or social media, technology gives firms widespread reach and connectivity.