How Legal Process Outsourcing Can Revolutionise Law Firms: A Guide for Attorneys and Managing Partners
Being in law practice requires a variety of highly complicated duties coupled with amassing generic paperwork. Even a well-optimised work system may still prevent legal practitioners from engaging in substantive activities – enter legal process outsourcing.
In today’s fast-paced and highly competitive legal industry, law firms are constantly seeking new ways to improve efficiency, cut costs, and remain ahead of the game. One solution that has proven to be highly effective for many firms in this globally and digitally-linked economy is outsourcing certain support services.
A relatively new model in the provision of legal services, legal outsourcing, or Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) is using the expertise of an outside corporation or outsourcing partner to handle a portion of the firm’s load. Analysts are predicting a heightening of the legal process outsourcing market to exceed $40 billion by 2025. Additionally, a 2019 special report by Altman Weil, Inc. reveals that 57.7% of lawyers in the United States believe that legal process outsourcing will be permanent and is here to stay for the future.
The most common tasks outsourced are frequently the routinary, menial, repetitive tasks that don’t call for extensive legal reasoning abilities. However, more and more specialised legal services including document review, legal transcription, research, liaison services, and patent examination are now being widely outsourced to the Philippines where labor costs are significantly lower.
In this blog, we will explore five key reasons why outsourcing legal support services can revolutionise law firms:
- Access to expert talent
LPO enables law firms to tap into a wider pool of talent and expertise that may not be available in their local market. This can include specialised areas such as document management, legal research, and database maintenance, among others. Law firms can access these services through outsourcing partners who have a pool of highly skilled professionals with specialised legal expertise.
The Philippines, for instance, is considered one of the top outsourcing destinations for law firms. The country has a large pool of highly educated and skilled professionals, including lawyers, paralegals, and legal support staff. This makes it easier for law firms to connect with the talent they need to support their operations. The country also has a high level of English proficiency, which is the primary language used in the legal industry. This means that communication with the firm’s offshore team is smooth and efficient, reducing the risk of misunderstandings and miscommunications.
Pro tip: To give law firms peace of mind when getting together with an outsourcing partner, choose an ISO-certified provider to ensure that services offered consistently meet world-class standards.
- Improved efficiency and productivity
Outsourcing helps law firms focus on core competencies and delegate non-core functions to outsourcing providers. This allows law firms to optimise their resources and improve efficiency by focusing on the tasks that require their specialised expertise. By outsourcing non-core activities, firms can free up valuable time and resources to focus on more strategic and client-facing tasks.
Additionally, legal process outsourcing providers have the infrastructure and technology to support the legal industry. Vault Outsourcing, for instance, has access to the latest software and specialised tools, as well as specialised expertise and knowledge, which can help improve law firms’ efficiency and productivity. According to the 2020 Altman Weil, Inc survey, 60% of law firms concur that outsourcing non-legal functions have resulted in significant improvements in the firm’s performance. Moreover, according to the same report, 50% of firms believe outsourcing legal functions significantly improved their firm’s performance and efficiency.
By focusing on core competencies, and leveraging the infrastructure and technology of outsourcing providers, law firms can increase their competitiveness and achieve their business goals – succeedingly remaining highly competitive in the legal industry.
- Cost savings
The inability to balance out cost savings and high-quality of work is a thing of the past. This is due to the fact that outsourcing providers are typically based in countries with lower labor costs, such as the Philippines. This allows law firms to access expert talent at a lower cost compared to hiring in-house staff. This then can result in significant cost savings for law firms, especially for several support services such as document review, legal research, billing, legal documentation, and transcription.
Furthermore, legal process outsourcing also helps trim overhead costs by eliminating payroll taxes, employee benefits, health insurance, security, and physical office space. With up to 70% savings in labor costs, firms get to maximise their profits and invest it where they can gain more.
- Enhanced flexibility:
One of the key benefits of LPO is the ability to scale services as needed. Law firms can increase or decrease the level of support they receive from outsourcing providers as their business needs change. Essentially, legal process outsourcing can future-proof a law firm’s business. For example, during periods of growth, law firms can increase their support services to keep up with increased demand, while during slow periods, they can decrease support services to reduce costs. This scalability allows law firms to adjust to changing business conditions quickly and effectively, improving their overall flexibility.
Additionally, outsourcing to the Philippines can further help a firm’s flexibility. The country, being located in the Asia-Pacific region, has a time zone that is close to the major business centers of the world. This means that law firms can receive support services during their business hours. And finally,
- Better risk management
Outsourcing providers like Vault have robust security and data protection measures in place, including secure servers and encrypted communications. This helps reduce the risk of data breaches for legal firms and ensure compliance with regulations. The risk of potential errors can be alleviated and the protection of sensitive client information can also be guaranteed.
Additionally, Vault Outsourcing also has quality assurance processes in place to ensure the accuracy and completeness of work performed by the firm’s offshore team. Moreover, a designated account manager for each offshore team is also provided to reduce the risk of mistakes and improve the overall quality of the outsourced legal service support.
Lawyers and managing partners, when scouting for a potential outsourcing provider, ought to look if the provider has expert advisor service. This is one way that legal process outsourcing can revolutionise law firms. On top of the services provided, experts from a firm’s outsourcing partner can assist them in identifying potential risks, support the law firms in scaling safely, allow an agile adaptation to change, and provide round-the-clock security that legal businesses of all sizes require to reduce risk.
By understanding the many benefits of outsourcing legal support services, law firms can position themselves for success in the years to come. So, if you’re looking to take your firm to the next level, consider exploring the potential of outsourcing with Vault.
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