The Evolution of Digital Platforms and Why They Matter to the Legal Industry
by Guy Remond, with Dave Zumpano
People in their twenties and thirties are excited by new technology and use it to make their lives easier; this often ripples out to their parents and grandparents. Bringing your legal services online will create a similar impact – you may initially attract a younger clientele but their great experience using your technology will encourage senior family members to work with you.
Consumers have shorter attention spans, less enthusiasm to attend appointments in the usual nine-to-five office hours, and they want their personal admin to be simple and easy to do whenever they want. Traditional technology did not meet these needs, and up until recently, there has been no capacity to access reliable legal documents online.
The Evolution of Technology
Twenty years ago you couldn’t collaborate on a document without emailing it back and forth. You had to do and save your own updates (and suffered disastrous consequences if you didn’t). Software was frustrating, challenging, and at times unreliable.
The world then advanced to software as a service (SAAS) products which made life easier because they could be accessed via the cloud, backed up and updated automatically, and consumed on any device (think Microsoft 365).
More recently, in part due to Covid-19, businesses have stepped up to use platforms (see our earlier blog What Is A Digital Platform And How Does It Revolutionize Legal Services?) to benefit their bottom line and meet consumer demand.
Many of these technological advances were met with resistance but people quickly adapted to them. Hindsight shows multiple benefits.
Technology Continues to Advance
Technology will see even more change in the next decade than it has in the past 50 years; consumers are demanding simple, easy-to-use platforms (see our recent blog How To Sell Legal Services Online And Keep Local Business). Law firms need a cost-effective, easy-to-implement platform that delivers their services 24/7 (if they don’t provide this, people will go elsewhere).
How to Create a Platform
Many firms struggle with the time required to build their own website and platforms, which are far more complex and tend to be built by third-party companies that have a full range of software expertise, from functionality right through to the look, feel, and ease of use.
As a law firm, you can hire these software experts to create your own bespoke platform, but it’s expensive to build a well-engineered highly secure system that can cope with customer usage without slowing down.
Guidr has been strategically designed for the legal industry. Dave shared his insights on our Legal Community podcast.
Dave: “I’m in my fifties. I’m appreciative of what technology can do but I’m not tech savvy. What we have created through Guidr is simple for consumers and lawyers to use; once it’s added to your website, your law firm has full access and functionality. It will bring in new business without extra time or effort.
There are so many levels to developing a platform that works. The beauty of Guidr is that our team is made up of people who understand each element, and that includes the marketing, branding, user interface, and user experience. How the platform is coded is critical because it impacts the layers that you can put on top of it. We started with the end product in mind, and that’s crucial to creating a service that people want to use again and again.”
The last few years have seen a shift in the legal industry towards online services, but most platforms cut out the lawyer and rely solely on digitized legal documents (with questionable outcomes). With Guidr, we have created a platform where certain legal processes can be completed online, giving the consumer great value for money, and offering the option for them to request additional in-person support and supervision from their legal law firm.
It’s a win-win situation.
Benefits to the Law Firm
Guidr has also been specifically designed to be easy for you to use; consumer data can be gathered via the platform, which frees up time for you to concentrate on complex legal matters (and enables the consumer to get started whenever it suits them).
When you make the most of a platform like this, you will also reap the rewards by attracting new business (you can make money while you sleep) and enjoying new in-person business from people who accessed legal documents online but requested in-person legal counsel too.
Guidr gives consumers control over how they access legal documents (all online or part online and in person), and it levels the playing field so the average local law firm can compete with much larger firms without compromising quality of service.
If you would like to find out how we can support your local law firm to attract new business from consumers who want a digitized service, while continuing to offer personalized legal expertise, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or Dave at email@example.com.
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