Technology has come a long, long way since it was first introduced. Looking back, it’s easy to see the impact of technology on society. It’s rare to go a day without being connected to others around the world. While looking to the past makes seeing change easy, predicting these future changes can be slightly more difficult.

Our staff, however, has decided to give it our best shot and predict the changes we think are important for improving your legal technology knowledge in 2019.

Change One: Increased Technology Training

Technology has had a massive impact on how lawyers perform daily functions. A new year is a perfect time to start seeing more people embrace new technology. In 2018 we saw North Carolina become the second state to implement mandatory technology training. This is a step in the right direction, and hopefully, other states follow suit.

Technology isn’t going anywhere, and it’s time to embrace the changes that it brings. Be open to what new technology has to bring; especially since many legal-specific software services can help improve and grow your bottom line. It’s important to stay informed and learn what is out there to benefit your firm.

Even simple training can help lawyers who fear technology gain a basic knowledge of technical competence. This will help them get over fears and gain an understanding of time-saving applications that make them more valuable. When you are a billable asset, your clients want to know you are efficiently completing tasks and accurately billing them.

It’s important to realize that the demand for strong technical skills is only going to continue to increase over time. 2019 is now the time for you to jump on the legal technology bandwagon and begin gaining a competitive edge.

Change Two: Knowing the Benefits of AI

The addition of new technologies into our lives can always lead to some concerns. Could this new technology eventually replace my job? Artificial intelligence (AI) won’t replace your job, and in fact, can help you increase billable hours.

Billable hours are critical. Therefore, the more hours you bill, the more valuable you are for your firm. AI can help eliminate the need for humans to do mundane, time-consuming tasks like document review and fact-checking and focus on more important tasks. AI is efficient and accurate for basic tasks and allows you to dedicate more time to client interaction. The amount of data that AI uses is impossible for humans to consume, and the knowledge that it lends to lawyers is irreplaceable. It’s important to know that AI will not replace lawyers, but it will change how you deliver legal services.

Change Three: Being Cloud Comfortable

Did you know that the cloud is a powerful tool that can let your firm eliminate or reduce infrastructure? Our staff took the end of 2018 to learn Microsoft based programs Azure and Intune (AWS and other solutions are worth exploring too).

With Azure, you can create secure servers in the cloud. This saves you money in the long run as you don’t have to worry about upgrades and maintenance. With Intune, you can have your settings (or the firm’s settings) be universal across devices. Intune, is user-centric not device centric. There are some limitations but imagine that every device you access has the same software and settings you initially set up. As a firm administration image the control over your data, without interfering with a user’s personal data. It’s quite an experience. We encourage exploration and discussions with your IT team to learn about this technology and how its benefits can strengthen your firm.

Goodbye 2018, Hello 2019

Change is inevitable, so don’t be left in 2018 when it comes to growing your knowledge. By welcoming 2019 and new technology with open arms, you may be surprised where your business goes!