By Grace Hart January 12, 2021

Return on the Lawyer (ROL): A checklist for law firms

The managed real estate market grew to $10.5 trillion by the start of 2021 (MCSI, 2021), despite a year of unprecedented challenges. The market has grown [160%] since 2010 and, as you would expect, digital transformation has gathered pace to keep up with the opportunities and challenges presented.

Return on the Lawyer (ROL): A checklist for law firms

Are your lawyers reaching their full potential?

According to YouGov, almost 50% of UK lawyers are using technology that does not meet their needs, and many say the technology they do use is creating more work than it saves.

As a result, far too many lawyers are spending much of their valuable time on routine, mechanical drafting – an activity that is repetitive, laborious, and inefficient.

In order to succeed in today’s competitive marketplace and deliver the level of service that customers now demand, law firms recognise that they cannot continue to operate in this way. It’s time for a new technology that truly delivers.

This article offers a checklist for industry leaders looking to optimise their lawyers’ time, increase their Return on the Lawyer (ROL), and achieve a step change in performance and profitability.

Your checklist for success

✓ Understand Return on the Lawyer (ROL)

Law firms can grow margins and win new business by making far better use of their lawyers’ valuable time. Using intelligent drafting technology frees them from routine, mechanical and inefficient drafting activities, enabling them to handle more matters, and focus on higher value client-facing work. The value that each lawyer generates for the firm increases. This is what we mean by Return on the Lawyer (ROL).

✓ Evaluate your current document automation solution

Automation technology has moved on from traditional document automation toolkits, but many law firms have not. It’s still all too common to see even the most senior lawyers bogged down in the repetitive, routine aspects of document drafting.

To understand whether you are using the most effective solution, ask yourself:

  • Are you able to easily build and maintain automations?
    Effective automation requires time, dedication, and the right skills to set up logic, build, test, and maintain on an ongoing basis. If you don’t have the resources to do this, you would be much better placed choosing a technology provider that combines legal knowledge with technical understanding of how to apply automation logic.
  • Can your solution handle complex documents?
    You will achieve the best results by focusing on automating complex documents. Breadth and depth of automation is also important – simply automating the most basic elements of documents (such as party details) brings very little in the way of efficiency gains.
  • Does it automate entire suites or a single document at a time?
    Transactions and other legal matters almost always involve multiple documents, yet many document automation toolkits only automate one document at a time. A more sophisticated platform will draft an entire suite of complex documents and ancillaries with ease – all from a single questionnaire.
  • Does it help you handle many more matters?
    Traditional automation toolkits don’t significantly reduce wasted time. But a legal-specific, and matter-based intelligent drafting platform allows suites of complex documents to be drafted up to 90% faster, and ancillary documentation to be produced instantly – close to a 100% time saving. Many more matters can be handled, generating more revenue, bigger margins, and increased PPE.
  • Are you effectively mitigating risk?
    Documents produced with a shallow automation by a traditional toolkit still require significant amounts of freehand drafting to complete them. This runs the risk of errors and inconsistencies. Deeper automations mitigate this risk by automating significantly more aspects, minimising the need for freehand drafting. The result is improved document accuracy, significantly reducing the risk of a subsequent claim being made against the firm for a drafting error.

✓ Discover intelligent drafting technology

Traditional document automation has now been superseded by intelligent drafting technology: an approach that automates the entire legal transaction in a structured way.

Intelligent drafting technology is revolutionising document drafting for forward-thinking firms, enabling them to vastly increase their Return on the Lawyer (ROL) and to position themselves as best-in-class.

Intelligent drafting technology achieves this because:

  • It is able to handle suites of complex documents with ease
  • It speeds up time to first draft by 90%, and up to 100% on ancillaries
  • It has a matter-focussed approach that uses rules-based automation and a structured data model
  • It’s user-friendly, even for complex drafting
  • Implementation and ongoing maintenance are easy and swift

As a result, law firms are able to:

  • Automate the complex and handle many more matters
  • Free lawyers up to work on higher value work
  • Increase profitability and be more competitive
  • Enhance client experience
  • Drive adoption
  • Demonstrate ROI
  • Be future-proof

Find out more about Clarilis intelligent drafting technology.

✓ Choose a managed service for implementation and maintenance

A managed service approach means the software provider handles the entire automation project for you, from conception through to development, implementation, and ongoing maintenance. This removes the burden on internal resources and speeds up your time to value. Traditional document automation toolkits create a significant maintenance overhead, especially when automation projects are trying to save a material amount of time or generate a suite of documents.

Learn about Clarilis’ managed service

✓ Ensure the platform delivers a clear and demonstrable return on investment (ROI)

Unlike traditional toolkits that can take months or even years to implement, intelligent drafting technology can be deployed within a matter of weeks. This means you will experience the benefits 4-5 times quicker than if you took on the automation project yourself. Every week saved in implementation time positively impacts the total cost of ownership and resulting ROI.

Revolutionise the way your lawyers work today

Intelligent drafting technology from Clarilis offers law firms an opportunity to transform the way their lawyers work by automating the time-consuming drafting activities that even senior fee earners are often bogged down in.

By sweeping away inefficient drafting processes, law firms can increase productivity and the resultant revenue, as many more matters can be handled. Lawyers are also freed up to focus on higher value client-facing work, which boosts earnings further and also improves the client experience.

Fee earners’ time is optimised and their full value is realised, increasing Return on the Lawyer and positioning the firm to be more profitable, efficient, and competitive.

Key takeaways

  • Lawyers are still spending too much of their valuable time on the routine, mechanical aspects of document drafting.
  • More successful law firms understand they need a greater Return on the Lawyer (ROL). This increased value can be achieved with intelligent drafting technology.
  • Using intelligent drafting technology, law firms achieve automations which can quickly and expertly draft complex suites of documents. Revenue grows as more matters can be handled, and more time is available for higher value work.
  • By choosing a managed service approach, law firms reduce the strain on resources and speed up time to value, as Clarilis builds and maintains automations to meet their requirements.
Screenshot 2022-07-25 at 12.33.23

Deep automation delivers to the bottom line

The managed real estate market grew to $10.5 trillion by the start of 2021 (MCSI, 2021), despite a year of unprecedented challenges.