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How to Procure Legal Technology with Limited Resources
Legal technology is the key to driving efficiency, accuracy and compliance for legal departments across all organizations. When lawyers are tasked to achieve more with less resources, having technology in place can help legal teams work smarter and bring greater value to their organizations.
However, procuring said technology is not always simple, as department leaders can be skeptical of the ROI it will bring to legal teams. Even after buying the software, everyone on the team needs to be trained in how to use the software and be able to find projects best suited to your chosen software solution.
Encouraging your team to adopt new technology can be difficult, especially when you lack a strategic approach to get that technology. These steps will help you ensure that you obtain the technology that best suits your team’s needs.
- Identify the best technology for your legal teams – There are various available legal tech options on the market, but not all of them will have what your team needs to succeed. To make sure that you are choosing the right technology, it is imperative to first name the problems you are trying to solve. When identifying what you want to solve, starting small can help you secure quick wins, which builds more momentum for your legal team in the future. Choosing the right legal technology for your team translates to the success of all business users and the company.
- Research the legal technology market – After deciding which technology is best suited to your team, comparing your legal department’s requirements with the capabilities of various products can help decide which technology is the best for you. Scheduling demos with various vendors can help narrow down the best solutions and ensure buy-in from leaders. A critical part of successful technology adoption is to make sure that the new system not only can solve your business needs, but that it also is compatible with the existing applications and tools that your business is already using. Including the IT team during the selection process is also important. Ask IT to work with your chosen vendor to explore integration with your existing systems in more detail, including integration costs. Finding which integrations are possible can make the implementation process much smoother.
- Work to get buy-in from the business – Before making your technology purchase, developing a process to measure ROI is essential to securing buy-in from business leaders. Asking questions like, ‘Will this solution improve efficiency and result in saved staff time?’ or ‘Will this help control outside counsel spend?’ can help prove a baseline and a method for calculating the potential savings this new technology will bring to the legal team. Quantifying ROI will not only establish that you have made a smart investment, but you will also create a tangible track record that will encourage future investment in technology for the legal department. Creating this standard for ROI will also help educate stakeholders in your department and organization.
- Getting Budget for Tech Investments – Budget can be a significant concern for in-house legal departments that are trying to procure new technology investments. This is because traditionally, legal teams have little to no technology budget. The most important principle for securing budget for legal tech is to not pitch technology as solving a legal problem, but as solving a business problem. For instance, better document management isn’t just about lawyers spending less time filing documents from email and searching for documents, it is also about the business getting their document requests faster. In the same way, automated legal advice tools aren’t just about saving lawyers time, they are about the business getting legal help faster and progressing more deals which impacts top line business growth.
Procuring technology in an emerging market can be difficult for legal departments to justify why they need to implement innovative solutions. Taking the necessary steps towards successful procurement sets a precedent that digital transformation is a priority for your organization, further improving the digital capabilities of every department across the company.
To learn more about how successful procurement can transform your legal department, and make your team more efficient, valuable and connected, schedule a call with our technology consultants. We can help you map out a process that is best suited to you and your team.