Legal technology - the holy grail of innovation?

Legal technology - the holy grail of innovation?

In today’s rapidly-changing legal landscape, forewarned truly is forearmed – especially when it comes to legal technology. With so many options and with so much as yet unknown, approaching the issue of tech can feel overwhelming, especially when you’re also tasked with leading an in-house legal team, one that needs to prove its value and efficiencies to the wider business. There are so many questions and concerns. Are you already running out of time? Should you find a well-reviewed new system and implement it as soon as possible to avoid being left behind? Does your team need special training? What tools are actually worth the investment?

We've recently conducted an in-depth report:  Legal Technology: Looking Past the Hype - which surveyed over 130 in-house counsel, including 20 qualitative interviews to provide you with the answers you need – and in the time frame you need it. Namely, fast.

We cut through the noise and get to the essence of the issue in our exec video summary of the key learnings. In just 90 seconds.

So, first things first – is legal technology the holy grail of innovation?

In short, no. In this 90 second video, Maya Hodroj, Market Development Director for In-house at LexisNexis explains that innovation in in-house legal teams should not begin with legal technology. 

This may come as a surprise, especially to the businesses – including in-house legal teams – that have been on a veritable spree in recent years to purchase new legal tools. But why would taking advantage of tools that are designed to make your lives easier be a mistake if you’re looking to innovate?

That is because there is no one size fits all approach when it comes to choosing and implementing legal tools. You have to understand your team and your business, and identify what issues you actually need to solve or streamline. There’s no sense in choosing a fancy new client portal when the issue is that your team needs better ways of communicating quickly and efficiently with each other, for example.

A 3-step plan to futureproof your technology strategy

Many teams are finding themselves falling into the trap of looking at the tools available on the market, checking out the use cases, and then just picking the one they like. But this doesn’t work; it leads to waste, inefficiency, confusion, and a crippling lack of uptake. Instead, Maya offers a must-follow three-step plan. Simple and thoroughly effective, this plan, achieved by identifying your pain points and following these simple, foundational steps, can help you secure the future of your team and make smart, cost-effective decisions.  

Step 1: Understand where risk lies in your organisation

Step 2: Map your processes, workflows and collect the relevant data

Step 3: Simplify your processes

The 3 technologies that In-house teams most value. 

Once you’ve laid the right foundations, you can start investigating what legal tools are actually useful for in-house legal teams like yours. To speed up your search, our report discovered that there are three tools that in-house teams use frequently and that deliver positive ROI to their teams and organisations.  Watch the second in our series of 90 second videos to discover which these are. Clue: artificial intelligence is not on the list!


Looking ahead, the research revealed one area in particular in which legal tools are going to become indispensable for teams looking to increase effectiveness, identify risk, and harmonise with the rest of the business - contract management.

To learn more on why innovation shouldn’t start with legal tech and what legal tech actually means, download our full In-house Insights Report:  Legal Technology Looking Past the Hype.

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About the author:

Louisa leads marketing for the in-house legal community at LexisNexis. She joined the dedicated in-house team at LexisNexis four years ago and has a passion for driving and facilitating initiatives which are customer-focused at their heart. Her vision is to support in-house counsel succeed in their fast-evolving role based on deep insight, data analysis and best practice gathered across the in-house community.

Prior to her in-house focused role, Louisa led the marketing for the bar and mid-market private practice sectors as well as product marketing lead for LexisPSL - LexisNexis' cloud based, practical guidance and legal research software solution.

She brings 20 years' marketing experience both client and agency side, specialising in B2B marketing in the Legal, TMT (Telco, Media and Technology) and Financial Services industries. In both South Africa, Europe and the UK.

Louisa is also an active member on the LexisNexis Gender Equality Matters (GEM) steering committee and is involved with the Families at LexisNexis Group which brings together, supports and lobbies for change those with an interest in balancing the challenges of work and family.