Legal Operations: What to look for in a legal technology partner

published on Legal Technology
Today’s legal department is under pressure “do more with less”. Executives expect the legal department to be a true business partner, helping the business achieve their goals, creating value and keeping a keen eye on costs. To deliver on these expectations, legal leaders look to technology solutions to help them drive efficiency, generate insights and control costs.

With many legal technology solution providers in the market, it is important that to select a vendor who will cater to the needs of your legal department and the long term objectives of your business.

Choosing a software that works for your legal department is not a cakewalk. However, evaluating your options based on certain parameters can help you decide on the solution that best fits your business. The partner you choose must help you achieve your goals and reach your milestones. To help you make the right choice, we have listed 5 major factors to cross off when you select your technology partner.

1. A partner that understands your business

From a business’s point of view, purchasing technology should be a long term investment therefore, the vendor you select should support your current and future needs.  Selecting a vendor that understands your business and your Legal’s role is key.

While the role of the legal departments can remain similar across different businesses, their function can vary. Therefore, a tech solution that works for a similar business will not necessarily be apt for your business. The technology you invest in, must reflect the goals of your department and your business and align with your budget. Hence, the vendor must fully understand your business, positioning, operations and growth.

Apart from understanding your business, your vendor must also be able to provide you with recommendations and insights to help you achieve your evolving goals. A vendor that is knowledgeable of best practices, industry trends and/or regulations in the markets you operate can anticipate your future needs. For an instance, your vendor can proactively suggest new dashboards or reports to configure, or help you adopt best practices to stay compliant with regulations, such as GDPR.

In short, your partner must be customer-centric and help you use the technology to achieve your goals.  

2. A reputable partner 

To ensure a secure investment in partner technology, you must choose a reliable, trustworthy partner. One way you can assess this is based on client references. Business history can say a lot about your vendor. The organisational values and culture can also help you determine your tech partner’s general attitude towards its stakeholders and stakeholder relationships including client partnerships.

The company history of your provider also gives an overview of the level of expertise that increases with the experience a vendor gathers over years. What sets a well-established vendor apart from a start-up is precisely the invaluable experience and know-how the former has gained by operating for years.  What is important is that your vendor has experience providing not merely technology, but particularly Legal Technology. A solution provider specialised in Legal Tech knows what legal departments require thereby can address needs and issues relevant to you.  

3. Training 

For a small corporate legal department, adopting new software may not necessarily be easy as there can be many issues that arise. Once you purchase and implement the software, you will need to train your staff to use it. For an instance, your vendor should be able to provide you training sessions (live or virtual), so that your employees can learn how the software works and familiarise themselves with the new system. Best in class vendors also provide access to self-learning tools like help articles, tutorials or webinars all of which will help your employees to be confident with using the new software.  

4. Technical support

When you purchase technology, you also want to choose a partner with a track-record for providing exceptional support. If you need to run a report and have a problem accessing information, you don’t want to be sitting on the phone for hours waiting for someone to help you, only to be passed on to someone else. Therefore, look for vendors that proudly communicate their issue resolution rates. Our experts answer at the phone in less than 1 minute in 95% of calls and solve 80 percent of the questions during the first phone call. Your vendor should be able to resolve problems quickly so that there is no interruption to business.  

5. Security and confidentiality

The legal departments deals with sensitive information therefore, it is crucial that your vendor provides you a software keeps data safe. Unprotected data can expose the business to a data breach, that can result in financial and reputational losses. Hence, legal information needs to be stored in a secured manner and the technology you implement must ensure your data remains safe. Your software must be certified on international standards on security such as ISO/IEC 27001:2013 that can assure you that your information is fully secured.

The cloud is inherently safe. However, to avoid any mishap, your vendor must be able to provide you advice and help you set up software on secure infrastructure. You must make sure that the software is in line with data privacy regulations and that you are GDPR compliant.

Your data on the cloud must be safe from any unauthorised access. The software must allow Legal manage and control access rights to ensure that only the intended people are authorised to access them. Additionally, look for providers that offer additional enterprise security features like two-factor authentication or single-sign on.  

To conclude, selecting an experienced, customer-oriented vendor of secure technology is key to getting the most out of an legal technology investment. Want to find out how technology can be a strategic solution for small legal departments to deliver maximum output? Download this guide and learn how technology can be your ultimate partner in driving your business to great heights by allowing you to effectively manage your legal operations.