Career opportunities at top firms will always be extremely competitive - academic achievement alone is not enough to stand out. So how can today’s early-career legal professionals get a leg up on their competition?
Today’s new lawyers are wise to differentiate themselves by embracing arguably the most significant wave of change to hit the legal profession that may not have been discussed in law school: Digital Transformation.
C-suite executives and boards have centred entire corporate strategies around Digital Transformation and it remains at the forefront of thinking in the world’s best-run companies. Virtually every other business unit, including shared services such as HR, Finance, and IT have taken advantage of, and benefited from, Digital.
Why Digital? Legal colleagues in a digitised function become value creators, increasing revenues and performance while still managing risk and cost. More than a cost of doing business, with digital lawyers, the legal function adds value beyond the core practice areas you may have studied. For example: Uncovering efficiencies, and even revenue streams, in the data that sits behind the day-to-day activities undertaken by the department.
As new lawyers prepare to enter the workforce, they should be ready to apply the legal skills garnered in law school with a digital mindset. As an example, new lawyers may quickly find themselves working alongside key algorithms and artificial intelligence to help speed up the contract review cycle.
The world’s most elite law firms and legal departments want efficiency and scale especially around traditional, time-consuming processes—embracing cutting-edge digital technology will deliver business agility, competitive advantage, economic value, and much more. An effective approach to Digital Legal Transformation (DLX) will not only change how leadership perceive the impact and value of Legal, it just might accelerate your career.
What should you know about Digital Legal Transformation?
Take contract management as an example: Most companies cannot access the bulk of their contracts readily. This is far from unusual; relatively poor access to data, process efficiencies, and speed of transactional service have become almost the norm in some industries. A company that harnesses the power of Digital—using real-time data—can close this gap with artificial intelligence and automated processes.
The deployment of a fully-digitised contract repository enables insights into contracting activity—insights that positively drive revenue and value for the enterprise. For new solicitors, this is important to recognise as you likely have more value to contribute than you previously thought. By accelerating the contract review cycle and transaction times, the company or firm can move faster which means more revenue for the business or clients. Who wouldn’t want to be part of a digital team that can help drive additional revenue?
As Digital continues to evolve in law departments and law firms, so too will the role of lawyers at all levels. Today’s new solicitors are wise to differentiate themselves by demonstrating their grasp of the role that Digital plays—as well as staying apprised of key trends—going forward.
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