The use of technology in law firms is accelerating at a rapid pace. In many practices, pen and paper are on the way out in favor of online productivity tools and cloud storage. Even tools that are familiar, like Microsoft Office, have been updated and improved. To get the most out of this technology, law firms need to be open-minded and agile. Adopting new tools and processes not only helps attorneys better serve existing clients, but it also opens up the potential to take on a greater caseload and grow their practices.
With thousands of law firms in the Dallas area, those that lean into new technology are finding a competitive advantage. Those that say “this is how we have always done it” will be left behind. The regulations and requirements of the legal profession do make adopting some new technologies impossible. However, a wide range of solutions can and should be part of your practice if you want it to thrive. In this post, we will explore five trends in technology for Dallas law firms. Further, we will explain how these trends are helping practices that adopt them deliver better client services.
Five Trends in Technology for Dallas Law Firms
Some of the most impactful technology you can bring to your law firm may not seem all that new at all. Office productivity suites and e-Discovery tools are nothing new, after all. Video conferencing has been around a while and gained larger adoption during the COVID19 pandemic. But many practices do not recognize the full impact that each of these tools can have. These five technology trends have the potential to transform your law practice.
If you are used to a version of Microsoft Office installed on your computer and requiring regular updates then you will love Office 365.
Microsoft Office 365 is a cloud-based productivity suite. It includes applications such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook. It also includes cloud storage for files and documents in SharePoint and OneDrive which we will cover shortly. In-office e-Discovery is also included, which allows firms to search and review emails, instant messages, and other electronic files quickly and easily.
This means that your tools and files are all accessible from any connected device. Updates and patches are delivered automatically. This means that neither your attorneys nor your IT department will be tasked with managing and maintaining your Microsoft Office utilization. Everything happens in the cloud via the Office 365 platform.
The benefits of using Office 365 are numerous. Perhaps the most important for law firms is that it allows attorneys to work from anywhere with an internet connection. This flexibility is crucial for attorneys who need to be in court, meet with clients, or conduct research at the library. It also eliminates the need for paper documents, which saves time and money.
Cloud storage is a service that allows firms to store files and documents online. This is valuable for firms that need to share files and documents with co-workers or clients who are not in the same geographic location. Cloud storage also allows firms to access files and documents from any device with an internet connection.
SharePoint and OneDrive are cloud-based document management and collaboration platforms that are part of Office 365. It allows firms to store, organize, and share files and documents securely. SharePoint also makes it easy to track changes to documents and see who has accessed them. This is valuable for firms that need to keep track of client communications and work products. OneDrive is secure and easy to use, and it provides a valuable way for firms to share files and documents with co-workers and clients.
Sharepoint allows firms to be more productive and efficient by working from anywhere and eliminates the need for paper documents. Additionally, OneDrive is secure and easy to use, which is important for firms that need to share confidential information with clients or co-workers.
Video Meetings and Teleconferencing
Video meetings and teleconferencing are becoming more popular as firms look for ways to save time and money. These tools allow firms to hold meetings without the need for travel. They also provide an opportunity for firms to connect with clients who are not in the same geographic location.
Tools like Zoom, Microsoft Teams (included in Office 365 licenses), and WebEx gained widespread adoption during the COVID19 pandemic. We are only just scratching the surface, however, of their utility in the workplace.
Video conferencing tools save firms time and money by eliminating the need for travel. They also allow firms to connect with clients who are not in the same geographic location. Depositions can be taken quickly when video replaces travel, allowing attorneys to gather important information from potential witnesses while their recollection is still fresh.
DocuSign is an electronic signature platform that allows firms to sign documents electronically. This is valuable for firms that need to collect signatures from clients or co-workers who are not in the same geographic location. DocuSign is also valuable for firms that need to send documents to clients or co-workers for review and comments.
eSignature tools like DocuSign save firms time and money by reducing courier costs and simplifying the signature process. These tools are valuable for firms that need to collect signatures from clients or co-workers who are not in the same geographic location. Because more and more electronic signature tools are acknowledged by the courts as valid in collecting signatures, attorneys may soon no longer need to deal in paper at all.
E-discovery is the process of searching for and retrieving electronic documents and data. This is valuable for firms that need to collect evidence in support of their cases. E-discovery also allows firms to search for and retrieve documents that have been deleted or lost.
In-office eDiscovery is a valuable tool for firms that need to collect and analyze data for litigation or investigations. It allows firms to collect data from email accounts, social media accounts, and document management systems. Additionally, in-office eDiscovery eliminates the need for firms to outsource eDiscovery services.
The benefits of using in-office eDiscovery are numerous. It allows firms to collect and analyze data for litigation or investigations. Additionally, in-office eDiscovery eliminates the need for firms to outsource eDiscovery services. This is important for firms that need to maintain control of their data and keep costs down.
Modernizing Your Practice Through Technology
In conclusion, there are many trends in technology that Dallas law firms can benefit from. These trends include the use of office 365, SharePoint, video meetings and teleconferencing, DocuSign, and cloud storage. By adopting these technologies, firms can be more productive and efficient. Additionally, they can save time and money by eliminating the need for paper documents.
Adopting new technology should be based on improving what matters most to your firm. Serving clients and handling cases in an efficient and effective manner will always be of paramount importance. Sometimes trends fade away over time. In the case of these five technology trends, our team at Axxys Technologies thinks they are here to stay. We have helped Dallas law firms stay productive and secure through technology for years and would enjoy the chance to learn more about your practice and future goals. Contact us here to learn how Axxys Technologies can help your Dallas-based law practice.