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Technology is essential to today's legal practice, from your website, to your practice management software, to simple word processing tricks. But you're a lawyer, not an IT specialist. So when it comes to setting up your firm's intranet, evaluating cloud computing security, or figuring out what's wrong with your email, sometimes it's necessary to bring in a little help.
Enter the legal tech consultant. A legal tech consultant can be a lifesaver for your practice, whether you're rebuilding your firm's computer infrastructure or just looking to improve your staff's document management competency. But, like with all hires, you'll want to make sure you're bringing the right consultant on board. Here are some common mistakes to avoid.
1. Not Hiring Consultants Specialized in the Legal Field
The legal industry isn't the same as others. Law firms have to hold themselves to standards that most other industries simply do not, particularly surrounding the security and confidentiality of client information. You'll want a consultant who understands these constraints, as well as one who knows how lawyers work. So instead of hiring the former CTO of an internet start up, look for consultants who have an established record of successfully working with lawyers; you'll be glad you did.
2. Hiring a Salesman
You want your tech consultant to find the best solution for you. But if your consultant specializes in pushing one or two products, you might not be getting the best options.
3. Not Checking Training, Credentials
Anyone can call themselves a consultant. So if you want to know that yours is actually skilled, you'll need to look beyond their title. Like any hire, you'll want to do your due diligence, looking into their training and credentials. And if you need a consultant for a big project, you might even want to ask for references in the legal field.
4. Not Demanding Training Yourself
Someone comes in, sets you up, and walks away. That's great for a week or two, then something goes wrong. Now what?
You want a consultant who is not only going to set you up, but is also going to train you and your staff on how to use your new systems. After all, a new toy is no fun if you don't know how to play with it.
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