Frontline President Craig Friedl Details Opportunities for Firms in 2021 for Legaltech News

February 19, 2021

Craig Friedl authored a February 16, 2021 article for Legaltech News discussing the challenges brought on by the pandemic in 2020 and, more importantly going forward, the opportunities for law firms to leverage the adjustments made last year for success going forward. The article was also the top story in the ILTA SmartBrief newsletter on February 17.

Like many businesses, law firms were asked to shift from a predominantly in-person work structure to a wide-scale remote operation overnight in 2020, and while that posed obvious challenges for their businesses, most firms were able to continue the important work of representing their clients thanks to fast adjustments and an embrace of change and digital transformation.

In reviewing the challenges of 2020 that paved the way for lessons going forward, Friedl examined three key categories:

  1. People – Managing from afar is challenging enough, but onboarding and training new attorneys and staff has always been a process dependent on in-person instruction and interaction. Firm IT staff had to make new plans that balanced the need for distance with the importance of personal connection.

  2. Process – Asset management is important when firm equipment is confined to company-owned property, but it is even more vital and challenging when employees are scattered. Firms were forced to make decisions about what employees absolutely needed and how to stay organized  on what hardware and software was out there.

  3. Technology – While technology adoption is typically a top challenge for firms, attorneys and staff became more willing to embrace new solutions, which led firms to be able to innovate and improve many processes through the use of new technologies with the buy-in of their employees.

With these challenges overcome, law firms are in a position to continue the momentum through 2021 and beyond with new opportunities. Users are more proficient now and better able to maximize software capabilities, which means firms can continue upgrading and deploying new systems and software.

While returning attorneys and staff to the office will require some heavy lifting from IT (managing returned IT assets, security updates, etc.), it’s important to continue this historic momentum for a digital transformation in the law profession, and now is the time for legal tech professionals to strategize on how to keep firms moving forward.

For the full article, please click here.