BLOG: There are lots of opportunities arising with law firms being temporarily forced to work remotely / from home.
It’s May 2020, some law firm staff have been put on furlough, the rest are working from home, and we have all been forced to embrace technology. How do law firms turn this into an opportunity? What long-term technology changes could and should be made?
The answers to these questions lie within the workforce; your partners, associates, personal assistants, and business development staff have already been optimising home-working. They probably haven’t printed anything in weeks! Finding out how they’ve coped could save your firm a lot of money in the long-term.
So how should you approach a technology change project?
Time and time again law firms start in the wrong place. They look at what software is available before they clarify the problem that the software should be solving. Following these simple steps should keep you on track:
Speak to your staff first
The conversations you have with staff are invaluable. They use the software you pay for and best understand what works and what does not. They are having to adapt right now, and will create work rounds if needed and “hack-the-system” to their benefit. This is what people do, but this is where inefficiency lies. find out where this is taking place, and focus on improving these areas.
Take stock of the problems, challenges, and opportunities
By now you may have received a lot of feedback. If so, take time to clarify exactly what your people need, and how they need it to work. This criteria should form the basis of your technology requirements. If you don’t have feedback (because you’re a smaller firm and don’t have an IT Department looking at these things, so you’re just having to do the best you can then make a proactive point of asking your people. This is where the gold lies. If you can’t do it, or you don’t have the resource, find someone who can!
Now, armed with a strong sense of what you do and do not need, you’re ready to fix some problems. The majority of which may be able to be resolved quickly and cost effectively with the existing software / technology in play. Working in this order you will save a huge amount of time and effort by avoiding misdirected pitches or tools available which are not needed. Focus on what your people need from the firm.
This is where Chatham Group can help. We provide the resource and expertise for firms to make change in these areas. There will be lots of opportunities coming out of remote working, like realising you don’t NEED to print that document! Your people are having to adapt and lean on the systems more than ever. Make sure you can retain the positives arising from this, and quickly identify and fix the negatives. The firms who so, will get ahead faster… uncover the gold which is hiding in plain sight!
Author: Alex Hutchinson is the Founder & Lead Consultant
If you would like to find our more about how we help law firms utilise technology and make good change happen, then feel free to take a look at the ABOUT US Videos on our website, by clicking here: https://chathamgroup.co.uk/videos-insights
About Us: Chatham Group is a small consultancy helping law firms unlock business potential using technology and process improvements. We provide the project and change management resource required to make good change happen.
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