Tech and the Law 2018 Report

It’s nearly impossible these days for legal professionals to stay sharp without the help of highly specialised technology. In recent years, plenty of software solutions have disrupted the legal industry, designed to make practising law more efficient and reduce operating costs.

Investors see the writing on the wall too. Last year alone, they bankrolled $1 billion dollars into legal technologies, tripling their investment compared to 2017. This indicates just how fast the sector is growing globally.

The Thomson Reuters Legal team partnered with Lawyers Weekly in 2018 to connect with legal professionals like you to capture the direct impact of technological change on your day-to-day workload. Below is a snapshot of insights included in the report.

Technology uptake in the workplace

Legal professionals are generally tech savvy. The average Australian professional spends 42% of their contact hours utilising legal technology solutions. Based on our survey findings, despite the high level of digital engagement, law tech adoption will likely to ramp up 2019.

If you want to know why, look to our survey respondents. For the average Australian legal professional, an increasing workload is their biggest challenge right now. It makes a strong case for firms and in-house counsel to increase use of solutions-based legal technology.

Legal tech training experiences

The Tech and the Law 2018 Survey also shed some light on digital practices taught in university settings. While 38.2% of participants learned how to use legal research software during their studies, only 10.7% of Australian legal professionals were offered document automation, risk and compliance or artificial intelligence software training.

Looking to the future

How well legal professionals regarded their workplaces, when it came to digital uptake in 2018, leaned more on the negative side. Close to a third said their organisation cared about technology (but budget constraints got in the way), while 26.2% of respondents revealed their workplaces were too slow to adapt to legal technology despite caring about it.

This brings into question how heavily law firms and in-house counsel will invest in legal technology solutions in 2019. We know that the average Australian legal professional sees it as critical.

While only 3% of participants currently use artificial intelligence, nearly 30% want their organisation to invest in it. But participants have put most stock in their organisation purchasing document automation technologies and workflow management, at 50.4% and 44.4% respectively. This begs the question, is it time for legal workplaces lagging behind to get with the times?

For curious legal tech geeks or those who keep up industry trends, the Tech and the Law 2018 Report is only step away. Download your free copy on mobile below or via the form to your right.

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