Much like their counterparts in law firms and corporate legal departments, legal teams in government agencies have found themselves in remote work environments amidst the coronavirus pandemic. Unlike most in the private sector, however, many government lawyers are still struggling with outdated systems that hinder their ability to work as productively as they had before.
To take legal operations to the next level, scalable processes and robust, flexible technology are necessities. Teams are realizing the many benefits of cloud-based platforms, for example, which offer real-time system updates and improvements without the bureaucracy required to get them approved incrementally. But with government agencies often facing tight budgets and limited resources, the process of upgrading systems can be especially challenging. A thoughtful and disciplined approach is required, including rigorous requirements-gathering to ensure real problems are solved.
The best place to start is by establishing a cross-function team that includes representation from attorneys, legal support, accounting/finance and IT. Voices from multiple departments can ensure the concerns of the entire agency are identified and considered throughout the process. Once established, the team should be expected to:
- Perform a formal needs assessment
- Develop an evaluation strategy
- Define a pilot project
- Gain the required approvals.
By engaging the right people early, the process will stay focused on solving actual business problems and secure the necessary support of senior leadership and other stakeholders to ensure its success. As part of its evaluation, the team must consider several focal areas as well. These may include:
- And many more
A buyer’s guide can help to identify the legal technology that will maximize the team’s capabilities and help the department stand out. AdvoLogix has developed a guide for the unique needs of government legal departments. While this buyer’s guide focuses on key considerations for moving to cloud-based matter management, its advice applies to any number of technology initiatives. Download the guide in our Resources Center.