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It’s no secret that a lot of industries are experiencing a technological revolution of sorts. Much of this has been brought about alongside the COVID-19 pandemic. Technology suddenly became a leading issue for many businesses as they grappled with a rapidly changing landscape.

The legal community is not immune to these changes. Law firms deal with a vast number of sensitive documents. Whether it’s working from home, implementing new technologies, or adopting new policies; everything must be done with extreme care and caution when it comes to legal firms.

However, that doesn’t mean a firm should shy away from making changes. The opposite is true. With the right technology in place, firms can adhere to their strict privacy and ethics standards while enabling staff to become more efficient and productive. Technology roll outs are some of the best investments a law firm of any size can implement.

Remote work exploded in popularity during the early days of the pandemic. This was obviously driven by a need to make a quick transition to remote work. Despite lifting of restrictions in many places, some employees continue to work remotely. More importantly, employees appear to prefer a flexible schedule as compared to being required on-site every day. Studies suggest that over half want flexibility while 11% of employees want full remote work.

This poses some challenges for law firms. Hiring and retention of great talent will require many firms to implement remote work policies. Of course, those policies cannot sacrifice client service or security of information. Thankfully, there are a range of technologies to help support this.

Document management is the most important piece of the puzzle. Employees need seamless access to important documents, securely, wherever they’re working from. Managed print services play a role as well. With the right multifunction printers (MFPs) in place at the office, documents can be scanned and instantly uploaded to the cloud for access by anyone who needs them. Access rules can be applied for greater security and ensures that only relevant parties can open, view, edit, and share documents.

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Whether working from home or at the office, there is going to be a continued need for digital video meetings. Many courts are still utilizing video meetings for some proceedings, depositions are being conducted by video in some cases, and video meetings are the best way to get a face-to-face experience without actually being face-to-face.

With managed IT services, businesses can implement the tools and technology needed to take video meetings to the next level. Back when many people first began working remotely, the expectations for quality video meetings were low. Now, video meetings need to be clear, high resolution, with quality sound. Whether it’s a group meeting in a boardroom or one person meeting from their office, top quality digital meetings are going to be an important trend to watch for in 2022.

Many law firms have some type of document management implemented but the technology had advanced in recent years and employees may be unnecessarily spending valuable time managing and sorting digital documents. The problem with this isn’t just that it’s an inefficient use of time, it can also lead to incorrect filing, security issues, and a lack of a cohesive document management policy throughout the business.

Today, many of the top MFP manufacturers have developed intelligent software that takes document management to the next level. The document is scanned and then the AI software goes to work to analyze the document and automatically file it correctly based on the parameters set. In addition, the access rules can be set upon scanning so that the document’s security is maintained from the very moment it enters the digital file system.

Cybersecurity has become a hot topic for businesses across all industries in recent years. 2021 was a record-breaking year for cybersecurity incidents and, if the trends hold true, 2022 will be another year of growth in hack and data breaches. Since law firms deal with sensitive data, they can be significant targets for hackers.

The implications of a data breach can be incredibly damaging for a law firm. Not only could data be lost or require a ransom payment to release; there could also be reputational damage. Clients would be less likely to want to work with a firm that has had data compromised.

Cybersecurity starts at an individual device level and requires total organizational compliance. Print management ensures adequate printers are in place and updated to the latest security patches. Managed IT services ensure the wider device ecosystem is secure. Everything works together to provide an overall higher level of security to meet today’s challenges.

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Technology is always changing. 2022 is going to be a year of massive change across all industries. Law firms that want to stay ahead of the curve will see the benefits through improved security, better collaboration, and enhanced productivity for employees.

To learn more about the tools and technologies available for law firms, contact the experts at Doing Better Business today.

Topics: remote worklegaloffice technology

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