Tower Street Finance has reported on a reluctance to embrace innovation and technology in the legal sector but a new piece of research has revealed that attitudes are changing.
It was carried out by the Solicitors Regulation Authority in partnership with Oxford University and found since the start of the pandemic 55% of those law firms questioned have improved or increased their use of technology.
Many legal providers in the sector also said they intend to interact with their customers online going forward.
More than a third of firms said they’d introduced new technology with the wills and probate sector being the second biggest group of respondents saying they use or plan to use legal tech.
In this area almost 60% said they’d taken on new technology with a further 31% saying it was in their plans. Only 10% said they’d no intention of adopting new technology.
Unsurprisingly the top method of using new technology was videoconferencing with clients (87%). This was followed up by storing information in the cloud at 66%. Other forms of tech now being used were practice management software (62%), legal research software (50%) and e-verification (37%).
When asked about what the barriers were for adopting innovation the main one was affordability or lack of spare capital which was reported by half of those surveyed.
Inhouse skills and/or resource to deal with new ways of working was also a concern.
Potential regulatory issues such as client confidentiality and data protection were also a worry, however many who had innovated found this wasn’t the problem they assumed it would be.
Tower Street Finance’s business development director Dicky Davies says: “This research is encouraging. As a relatively new to market innovator in financial products we’ve regularly seen resistance to new ideas.
“However, our products are designed to help solicitors offer a better service to their clients, and also save them time and money. They’re all there to solve problems we know exist and because we’re not a broker unlike others who offer similar products, we can be flexible to meet the individual needs of clients.
We have a range of products available to help executors and beneficiaries access their inheritance sooner, and some of the products also help solicitors generate more business so it’s a win-win situation.”
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