Big Law Attorneys Launch Blockchain-Powered In-House Workflow Software
- NMBL Technologies, a legal tech startup, is partnering with blockchain developer Dragonchain to create cloud-based legal workflow and document management products powered by blockchain.
- The platforms are expected to release by late 2019. According to Daniel Farris, the Co-founder at NMBL, the software will differ from other workflow programs offered because most platforms are tailored to private practice lawyers, have a limited scope or are task specific. Daniel further commented:
We are targeting those in-house lawyers who are decent-size companies, have sophisticated legal issues, are responsible for protecting hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue but may have budgeting constraints and are running lean. [LegalTech News, Nov 19]
INSIGHTS FROM LEGAL INNOVATION EXPERTS
- On Innovation: Innovation needn’t be exciting or cool, and innovation for the sake of innovation should not be the focus. Innovation in knowledge management is relative. For example, before I joined Ogletree Deakins, the firm had been engaging in some KM activities, but there was no formal, established KM department. The fact that the firm hired a full time, dedicated KM leader was innovative for the firm. Compared to other firms with already established KM departments, this was not an innovation. Had we stopped there, today the fact that we have a chief knowledge officer would be old news and not at all innovative.
- Focus Areas for Knowledge Management Innovation: A successful and truly innovative knowledge management program is multi-faceted. The best way to identify innovation opportunities is to look for pain points. Try to solve problems that your clients, lawyers, or co-workers are experiencing. As a basic example, if lawyers are wasting time drafting boilerplate documents from scratch, you can create a searchable repository of model, sample, and form documents that can be replicated. For more mature firms that already employ such approaches, seek out tools that can automate the drafting of documents using artificial intelligence technology. [CIO Review, Nov 19]
- On Law Firm Partnerships: Global Legal practices are investing significant amounts of time and money on technology and innovation, entering into new partnerships, developing new legal products, diversifying into new services and hiring the personnel required to deliver change.
- On Law Firm & Technology: Many firms are seeking a return on their tech investments by either taking a stake in lawtech start-ups, or hoping to sell their expertise to other law firms.
- On Law Firm Hirings: Law firms are hiring more technology specialists and universities offering legal tech and innovation-related courses. The way law firms approach tech and innovation are by employing dedicated ‘innovation heads’, regardless of the firm’s size.
- On Lawtech Incubators: Some firms have enthusiastically embraced running lawtech ‘incubators’ and those that have done so are generally positive about their experiences. Most firms positive about their own incubator-hosting have used the experience to benefit their firms directly.
- On AI technology Adoption: Law firms are hesitant to adopt AI technology because of the associated purchase and training cost. It’s still cheaper for them to do a lot of their work in a low-cost location than to get the machines to do it.
- On Pricing: When vendors will offer AI-assisted contract review tools at a price that makes the technology’s usage a viable commercial proposition, take-up will increase rapidly. This, in turn, will require the legal sector to reconsider its pricing of such services — or risk losing out to competitor firms who have already made the changes. [Legal Futures, Nov 20] [Legal Cheek, Nov 21]
iManage wins the UK legal–tech award, with Libyo as the runner-up
- iManage, the AI-powered document management company, won the British Legal Technology Awards under the category, “New IT Product of the Year”, with Libryo, the South African legal–tech company, being the runner-up. Other nominations of the category included Consilio, ThoughtRiver and NetDocuments. [IT-Online, Nov 23]
LEGALTECH EVENTS AND CONFERENCES
Legal Tech, Fear, and The Future
- Based on a Harvard article called “How Fear Helps (and Hurts) Entrepreneurs” by James Hayton and Gabriella Cacciotti, Dan Lear from Right Brain Law talks about embracing change, and the future of legal tech. To listen to this podcast, click here.
Voices of Cliocon 2018
- The lawyers and technologists attending the Clio Cloud Conference in New Orleans in October, were asked a range of questions for on-the-spot short answers. The questions focused on the areas – technological needs of small law and solo practitioners, and trends on the legal technology landscape more broadly. To listen to their response, click here.
Clio Cloud Conference 2019
- The 2019 Clio Cloud Conference will be held on October 21-22, 2019 in San Diego. The conference will discuss on actionable data insights from the 2019 Legal Trends Report.
Demystifying and Assessing Artificial Intelligence
- The webinar on Demystifying and Assessing Artificial Intelligence will discuss on how to make use of artificial intelligence to improve legal-services delivery. The one-hour webinar will be hosted on 28th November.