law firm collaboration platform

Choosing Your Law Firm’s Collaboration Platform

law firm collaboration platform

The ABA’s Rules of Professional Conduct advise lawyers to stay knowledgeable of societal changes, including shifts in technology. So, that raises the question: Is your firm current with its technology services? More specifically, in the face of a global health pandemic, are you still using yesteryear’s technology, or have you upgraded to modern solutions?

As remote work becomes the new normal, forward-looking law practices are turning to collaboration products that can help keep cases on track, enable remote meetings, promote client safety and keep staff productive. For this article, we highlight five tips to consider when choosing a collaboration solution for your firm.

1. Focus on Security

In the digital era, maintaining client confidentiality means making sound decisions to ensure your online communications are secure and private. You must make sure attackers don’t jeopardize your clients due to lax security standards.

Encryption is critical to holistic security – especially for law firms with highly sensitive data. Law firms should only use a collaboration tool that supports encryption in-transit, encryption at rest and end-to-end encryption. This means the platform encrypts data while in transit (i.e., during meetings) and at rest (i.e., stored recordings) while never granting the server access to decrypted data. This way, even if a server is hacked, the bad actor can’t retrieve any meeting data.  

While many of the collaboration applications provide some level of protection, surprisingly few of the leading names offer these critical levels of encryption. In fact, some of the top brands have made headlines recently due to poor security. For example, many encrypt data in transit but not data at rest, rendering stored files subject to breaches.

Don’t put your clients in undue risk by deploying a non-secure collaboration platform.

Cisco Webex is one of the few tools to offer encryption in transit, encryption at rest and end-to-end encryption. Further security capabilities include tight control over device privileges, quick actions to protect against lost or stolen mobile devices, file share controls to thwart data loss and protect against malware dissemination, and control over who can download, preview or change sensitive files and documents.

2. Look for Sophisticated eDiscover Functionality

Well-made eDiscover tools can vastly streamline tedious, time-consuming discovery work. And given the amount of time, money and effort firms spend on discovery, simplifying the process can reap great benefits.

Through add-on packages, Cisco Webex offers an intuitive eDiscovery interface for staff to search and extract information using email addresses, keywords and other criteria. Additionally, you can configure Webex to automatically transcribe video and audio recordings, making the task of discovery faster and more productive.

In 2020, relying on collaboration tools without sophisticated methods for eDiscovery hinders your ability to compete technologically.

3. Be Sure You Protect Past Investments

Don’t settle for communication tools that devalue past investments. Instead, build a solution that modernizes your law firm’s collaboration platform by connecting new and old systems in novel ways.

For example, some solutions like Webex integrate with Microsoft Teams, Dropbox, Google Drive, Salesforce, Trello, Jira and more. Also, your firm can use the Webex API to further customize the platform to fit your business needs.

4. Look for Tools That Serve Your Clients

Every client wants more transparency, efficiency and cost-effectiveness. With this in mind, look for a collaboration solution that improves the client relationship. For example, wouldn’t it be nice for clients to have a secure digital portal with up-to date-information about their case, expenses and other resource sharing?

With the tech-savvy of clients growing every year, more and more firms are expected to provide digital portals where clients can access vital resources. In choosing your law firm collaboration platform, make sure you can centralize resources from myriad systems to keep all stakeholders current.

5. Make It a Team Effort

You cannot force teams to adopt collaboration tools simply because you say so. Instead, to encourage active and useful collaboration communities, firms should take a top-down approach. When your leaders plainly see the benefits of collaboration tools, that mindset has a trickle-down effect.

Don’t put the burden of a successful adoption on the shoulders of your IT team. When your leaders recognize the benefits, you increase your likelihood of a successful adoption.

Why Go With Cisco Webex?

The 2020 health crisis has radically changed how law firms around the world interact with staff, clients and prospects. From solo practices to BigLaw, everyone has been forced to suddenly adopt online communication apps for conferences, presentations and other collaboration efforts.

But now, several months into the pandemic, the many shortcomings of the quick solutions that firms decided on are becoming more pronounced. Looking for answers, many firms are migrating to Cisco’s industry-defining Webex collaboration platform.

Some of the biggest names in law have already moved to Webex. Seyfarth Shaw, for example, has saved millions by deploying its Webex system, which allowed the firm to rethink its need for traditional office space.

With remote work set to become the new normal, don’t count on inefficient, non-secure solutions for the sake of convenience. Instead, rely on Webex to provide the secure digital collaboration solution required to keep your firm up and running.

To learn more about how the platform could work within your firm, watch Covene’s webinar on the advantages of Webex for law firms.

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