4 New Legal Technology Trends Your In-House Legal Team Needs
In-house legal departments are currently experiencing enormous pressure to change. The industry has higher expectations than it once did, and it needs to keep up with the times by embracing new legal technologies. This became more apparent because of the new pressures brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are four legal technology trends that are currently shaping how in-house legal departments operate.
1. Legal Technology Spending
As more legal departments are trying to ramp up their spending on new legal tech because of the more remote-work-focused environment, budgets for legal technology are set to increase drastically in the coming years. By 2025, it is expected to increase almost exponentially because of the changing times. That’s why it’s essential for most in-house legal departments to develop a multi-year legal technology strategy that can evolve with changes in the corporate environment.
2. The Preference for Non-Lawyer Staff Over Generalists
Efficiency has taken the spotlight now, which means legal departments must improve their processes, their legal technology implementation, and their analytics. These are just some of the digitalization strategies that departments need to push to support increased workload. Efficiency concerns have already led teams to consider the highest and best use of their teams’ time and expertise, including shifting work from lawyers to nonlawyers. If in-house departments are to become more efficient, they need to invest more in legal project managers and data scientists than generalist lawyers.
3. Automation Is a Priority
In 2019, the average legal department reported that 33% of its corporation work was automated. While that may seem like an improvement, automation needs to become more prevalent. Tools like legal document management software can be of great help to the team. The key to the success of automation is to first identify specific issues that can be solved with automation. Instead of using legal technology in search of a problem, automation should be prioritized as it can potentially solve a lot of problems in the department and implement more efficiencies.
4. Contract Life Cycle Management
While automation is very much welcome and considered essential, it’s no magic bullet to solve everything. Just because work can be automated doesn’t mean that it’s simple or easy to succeed. The most expansive, highest-potential solutions, such as ML-driven contract reviews, carry a great deal of complexity in their underlying functionality. However, this requires careful planning and consideration or they risk wasting money on poorly adapted systems.
To get the best return on contract lifecycle management (CLM) investment, legal departments must prioritize capabilities that match their process maturity instead of going for a half-baked approach that is more likely to accomplish only a fraction of the expected value.
These legal technology trends are crucial if in-house legal departments are to keep up with the changes and become more efficient with their work. These four items are considered key drivers that are transforming legal from an internal law firm to a function that drives value for the business.
Legal Technology Finder is your trusted source for tech solutions designed to help legal teams become better at what they do. We can help you become more productive, responsive, and better able to process large quantities of work. Contact Legal Technology Finder to find the right solution for your legal team.