Making the Legal Sector Smarter with Data
The legal sector is increasingly turning to data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) to help manage and process the vast amounts of data they deal with on a daily basis. The use of data analytics can help lawyers to identify patterns and trends in data, which can then be used to inform strategic decisions or to support legal arguments.
We continue to move away from the image of the lawyer hunched over court records, spending hours and hours researching their case. The efficiencies we get through technology and being able to use it enable law firms to do more for their clients in a shorter period of time and at less cost. Data analytics and AI tools can help lawyers improve their workflows and increase revenue while improving customer service levels.
Building Cases with Analytics
Data analytics can be a powerful tool for extracting insights from legal data. By using historical case information, data analytics can help you to identify patterns and trends that may be useful in your own legal proceedings. Some of the data that can be analysed includes trial results, witness testimony, court final decisions, and points of reference. Having this data readily available can help you build a stronger case and get the outcome you desire.
Much of the work handled by paralegals and entry-level attorneys can be handled by computers with new breakthroughs in text mining. Although currently not extensively used, these technologies have the promise to become a fundamental component of legal practice in the near future, as they continue to be polished. Built on IBM's Watson, "Ross", an artificial intelligence software acts as a cognitive computing platform that is aimed to support attorneys by performing the job of legal scholars. Ross can read questions and comprehend them. It can also read the complete body of the law, return a referenced response, and provide topical readings from primary, secondary, and legal sources.
In today's legal landscape, electronic discovery or eDiscovery - the identification, collection, and production of electronically stored information has become increasingly important. This data can come in many forms, such as emails, documents, databases, audio and video files, social media and more.
The legal sector has been slow to adopt analytics but one prominent use of it is in intellectual property cases where images, text, lyrics and music sections are analyzed to determine whether intellectual property was stolen.
In the past few years, however, more and more firms are using data analytics to make smarter decisions about their clients' cases.
"The legal industry is still in its infancy when it comes to using data," said Jeremy Zuckerman, an attorney at Reed Smith who advises companies on technology matters, including social media and cybersecurity. "But with time, I think we'll see more lawyers using data analytics and predictive tools." In fact, according to Gartner, legal departments are increasing their investments in data scientists by 30%.
Optimizing Business Processes and Gaining Clients
Just like any business, law firms also need to market their services. Data analytics allows you to analyze information that is available in your firm's databases — such as case files, billing records and other documents — so you can better understand how your clients are using the legal services they purchase from you. In some cases, this information may be collected from direct mail campaigns or other marketing efforts; however, it can also come from social media channels or even public records such as court records or property ownership records. This can help legal firms better understand their target audience and focus on areas where marketing can have the biggest impact. By using data to analyze client behavior, firms can develop more targeted marketing campaigns that are more likely to succeed.
By recognizing chances to improve client relationships, law firms can increase profits. They can efficiently examine their clients' data and seize possibilities for expanding current client relationships by applying legal analytics to the internal financial reporting process and automating major corporate transactions. 50% of legal work connected to major corporate transactions is predicted to be automated by 2024 by legal departments, as per Gartner.
Legal bots are interactive web programs that have been built to communicate with the user in order to assist with a function or to deliver tailored responses to a user's specific scenario. To help present or potential clients deal with a legal issue based on the information provided, several law firms are using bots. Some organizations are even creating free legal bots to aid those who would not otherwise have access to legal aid.
Legal companies may utilize this technology to differentiate themselves from their competition and build strong client relationships. They can improve their operations, reduce expenses, increase efficiency, and generate more revenue by leveraging the power of data analytics. In this era of comprehensive data-drivenness, law firms are utilizing the best data solutions to increase efficiency and transparency.
The Way Forward
A data revolution is coming to the legal industry. Big data presents an opportunity for law firms to streamline business processes and improve everyone's access to the legal system. Legal research is made simpler and more thorough, eDiscovery is quicker and more economical, companies can market themselves more successfully, attorneys can advise their clients about litigation decisions in a more informed manner. Although legal firms and analytics businesses are becoming more aware of the possibilities of data, certain learning curves are necessary for the industry to reap these rewards.
Smarter and more productive legal work is the future.