Design Partnering: How to Get Your Clients Excited About AI

Modern technologies are empowering law firms to tailor legal solutions to specific client needs. In part three of our three-part series exploring how law firms can use advances in artificial intelligence (AI), we explore how to get your clients excited about AI and engaged in the design process.

The rapidly developing field of AI is giving firms the ability to personalise their services more than ever before. AI-powered tools are taking the grunt work out of legal practice, so you can spend more time on providing tailored, personalised solutions.

Collaboration is the new currency of success in a business culture where out-of-the-box solutions are passé. Changes in business culture mean clients are more eager to partner with firms to co-create solutions that break new ground and deliver better outcomes.

This process is known as design partnering. It calls on the principles of design thinking – such as collaboration, innovation, flexibility and co-creation – to establish new ways of working together for mutual benefit.

Design partnering and AI

The immediate benefits of design partnering and AI include improvements in turnaround times – leading to reduced costs that you can use to challenge revenue models.

Caryn Sandler, Gilbert + Tobin’s Chief Knowledge and Innovation Officer, has seen some real benefits to the design partnering approach.

“We’ve seen significant time savings using the AI tools to streamline due-diligence reviews and discovery in litigation, in part because the software can standardise the review process and review large numbers of documents in bulk in a short period of time,” she says.

“We have a dedicated budget for AI and other innovative technology solutions, but obviously our investment varies on a case-by-case basis, depending on the type of deal or specific needs of our lawyers and clients.”

The associated cost savings of implementing AI can be passed directly onto your clients in the form of rate reductions, or used as the basis for new revenue models. When combined with design partnering, the use of AI-powered tools can also improve your market position, with clients viewing your firm as being ahead of the curve.

5 questions to engage your client

Partnering with a client to design a personalised solution requires careful management and a thorough fact-finding mission. Here are five questions to ask your client to get them actively engaged in the process:

  1. What business challenges keep you up at night?
    This will help you develop empathy for your client and understand their pain points.
  2. What’s the ultimate testimonial a customer could give you?
    This will get your client thinking about what success looks like to them, and help you define where they are on that journey.
  3. What needs to happen to achieve this result?
    This will reveal the key business processes your client uses to deliver a successful outcome and any areas where they’re failing.
  4. How could our technology assist you to deliver this?
    This will allow you to bring technology and AI into the conversation in a relevant way that speaks directly to predefined business goals.
  5. How can we help make this happen?
    This will shift the focus to you and help define how you can directly contribute to achieving the client’s key business goals.

The key, as always, is to clearly understand the problem you’re trying to solve – only then will you be able to choose the right solution, deploy it successfully and begin reaping the benefits.

Interested in learning more about how your firm can reap the benefits of AI-powered legal tools? Check out part one and two of our three-part article series: How Your Firm Can Use AI-Powered Tools to Improve Client Outcomes and How to Prepare Your Firm for the AI Revolution.

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