Chris White began his IT career in financial services and has held senior roles in NPI, Shroders and other firms. He then moved to become CIO at Ashurst and later held further CIO roles at Kennedys and Mimecast, before becoming Global CIO at Clyde & Co. He now sits on QuoStar’s board as a consultant to lead the CIO Service, providing ambitious businesses with CIO-level skills on a flexible, tailored basis. Robert Rutherford is an IT industry leader with over 24 years of experience working with IT and business systems. He leads QuoStar by providing strategy and vision for the business whilst also remaining active with clients, providing insight and solutions for their various business challenges and opportunities. 29 MAR 2022 | WWW.LAWYER-MONTHLY.COM THE DIGITISATION OF THE LEGAL PROCESS businesses to know what to do first and to ensure that it will deliver value to the firm. As a result, it is essential for legal firms to have a clear understanding of the strategy of the firm on questions around where goals and priorities lie. Only then can technology be matched to support the business strategy. Digital transformation must also be prioritised, with projects properly planned and managed to ensure delivery of expected value and benefits. Technology is the enabler, not the driver, and a robust governance structure to implement solutions effectively is now essential for every firm on this journey. Stay proactive on security Lawfirms arewidely knownas aprime target for cyber-attacks, exploitation and ransom. While the rapid digital transformation has brought benefits, it is also essential that legal firms take a proactive and structured approach to managing security, especially as the current threat landscape continues to evolve. The only way that this can be done correctly is by implementing an Information Security Management System (ISMS), ensuring that business risks related to cyber and data security are clearly understood, documented and suitable controls are in place. A firm’s board must take ultimate ownership and accountability for IT security, and an ISMS, such as IASME or ISO 27001 is essential to these businesses at this time. Leverage the possibilities of data Technology is an asset when it comes to data, an area that many legal firms have not really considered yet. Legal firms sit on vast amounts of data, often not knowing what it is, where it is, and how to access it. The value of this data could be immense – and is increasingly being used by firms to spot trends in the market, share knowledge, and even help to predict the outcome of litigation. The data journey has only just begun, but once legal firms are off the ground technologically, data will certainly be the next big area of consideration for the sector, following on from areas such as retail and banking. What the future holds There is little doubt that the journey to digitalisation of the legal process will not only continue but increase in pace. Those who ignore this trend will fast be overtaken by those that embrace it. Technology is advancing rapidly, and sophisticated search, machine learning, process automation and AI technologies are already allowing greater automation of the basic legal processes. Chatbots, too, are increasingly being used to answer simple, routine questions from clients, while blockchain will revolutionise the way in which many legal transactions happen as databases, financial systems and legal processes become integrated and talk to each other. Done correctly, the right use and implementation of technology will allow law firms to provide the level of service their clients demand, at a price they are prepared to pay, profitably.