Top 5 IT Challenges in the Legal Sector

Legal doc signing

As with any industry, the legal sector has its own IT challenges and considerations that are important to be aware of. With the modern world going the way it is, not being ready for the challenges that your legal company could face regarding IT may be the difference between success and disaster.

Sleepless can help you prepare for these challenges by empowering you to learn from them and directing you on how to tackle these challenges head-on.

In this article, we’re going to go over what you’ll face and how you should prepare yourself to take them on.

Cybersecurity and Data Security

According to Smith & Williamson’s Annual Survey of Irish Law Firms in Ireland for 2021/22, Cybersecurity is the top IT investment priority for 3 in 4 Irish legal firms. 100% of the top 20 firms in the country view it as the top IT priority. This increase in investment is not from out of the blue.

Cyber threats are becoming more public, commonplace and increasingly sophisticated, so keeping up with the latest advancements in cybersecurity is vital.

It may seem obvious but simply put, cybersecurity is more important than ever. And that importance is only growing.

As attacks become more intelligent and powerful with increasingly tricky and deceptive innovations, an unprepared victim could be devastated.

From social engineering and access breaches, to hacking and ransomware, the threat of an attack is always looming. It’s important that you take time to ensure you’re educated and properly prepared for anything that could come your way.

Ensuring that your organisation has security covered is a large part of this – making sure that there’s nothing overlooked anywhere is vital, as any small vulnerability could cause a massive amount of damage and disruption throughout your business.

Meeting Compliance Requirements

Compliance requirements are everywhere. Between software compliance and more sweeping compliance issues like GDPR, ensuring that your organisation is up to snuff is key – after all, not remaining compliant with important acts and regulations can result in hefty fines for your organisation. Better to keep up to date rather than burn a hole in your pocket.

Lack of compliance also doesn’t just end in fines. It can also lead to:

Data Breaches and Security Vulnerabilities: A lot of compliance regulations are also in place for security reasons, with good reason – these are regulations to stop recklessness and ensure that protections are in place.

Loss of Business and Partnership: If your company breaches compliance, it will be seen as untrustworthy. This is why ensuring that compliance is met is vital to maintaining key industry relationships and keeping customers.

Damage to Reputation: Getting caught breaching compliance regulations is a stain on your organisation that you can’t get rid of. Your reputation will forever be in the bin, which will probably cause damage to your company that you can’t fix.

Taking the time for due diligence to ensure that you’re compliant is very important for these reasons and is always worth checking and tracking.

Remote and Hybrid Communications and Collaboration

Across the world, the legal sector is undergoing a massive shift towards remote work and online communications.

This presents many new challenges for your organisation:

Logistics: working out the logistic strain of a remote working solution and collaboration is a daunting task

Security: If your team work from home, accessing files becomes a clear security concern

Cost: Providing staff with the necessary tools and devices to work from home is a new cost for you to take on

Reliability: Whatever system is used for remote working needs to be reliable. Especially with an organisation as time-sensitive as a legal firm, every second counts – and your communications app not working would be unacceptable.

All of these require time, resources, and planning to work out and research. Why not contact the Sleepless team today? We’ll be able to help you through the whole process to get you and your organisation in the best place it can be!

Time-Consuming Manual Tasks

Some tasks simply need to be done, but are a time-sink that can waste your valuable hours that are needed elsewhere.

These can be critical processes, that need to be completed with accuracy and be spotless to ensure that everything works well throughout your organisation.

With the help of automation tools like Power Automate, these tasks can be done by an automatic system – meaning you can finally invest your valuable time in your organisation where it is most necessary.

With automation, you can make sure everything is completed efficiently to a high standard, but you can also remove the chance of human error. This can also allow your people, your team, to grow and learn new skills rather than get bogged down in the busywork!

Archival and Legal Hold of ESI

Holding data – whether that’s case files, evidence or sensitive information – safely and securely is crucial to every law firm. However, given that much of the legal system has transitioned to a digital-first workflow (including remote court hearings, digital case management systems etc.), legal organisations are now expected to handle archives and legal hold as electronically stored information (ESI).

This naturally means that a lot of materials used within the legal system have also moved online. This is a large undertaking for any law business, as there are many challenges to integrating the digital-first system into a traditional legal organisation:

Security: Ensuring the ESI handled by your organisation is secure and safe – preserved and protected away from damage – is vital, as ESI handled this way is often important to ongoing cases. Worst case scenario, you don’t want bad security leaving a window open to tampering and sabotage.

Redundancy: Along those lines, keeping multiple copies is a requirement. If important ESI is stored on a single central server which is then damaged, it is gone for good. However, ensuring there are multiple copies will dramatically reduce the chance of such a catastrophe.

Accessibility: Files in digital storage also need to be accessible fast and with ease. Things change quickly in the legal world, so ensuring that there’s no downtime in accessing the data is a must-have.

How We Can Help Solve These Challenges

The modern legal world is embracing IT, and the challenges that you will face because of that are important considerations for any law firm that wants to make sure that they’re not caught off guard by them.

If you need more assistance or help to take your law company to the next level in all things IT, get in touch with Sleepless today!

Our expert team is here to help your organisation ensure that all of its IT needs are met.

Come have a chat with us today and see how we can help!