Legal Support Professional? Why You Need to Brush Up On Your IT Skills

The legal profession is notorious when it comes to slow adoption of new technologies. In many law firms and corporate legal departments, legal support staff lead the way in the adoption and use of technology, finding it essential for the research, writing, and case management work they do.

If the legal field tends to be slow at embracing new technology, why should legal support professionals fight to stay on the cutting edge? Here’s why you need to brush up on your IT skills:

  1. Tech is transforming law. “Slow adoption” doesn’t mean “no adoption.” Each year, increasing numbers of law firms and legal departments are taking a proactive approach to integrating technology into their work. From online case management systems to improved hardware, law firms and legal departments are turning to tech to lower costs, solve problems, and make it easier to work away from the physical office space. Legal support staff who join this trend may be able to offer indispensable advice to their co-workers and supervising attorneys; staff who do not join in risk being left behind.
  2. IT skills may translate to new job opportunities. Technology has also opened up new career opportunities for legal support professionals. eDiscovery, information and case management, and technology-based litigation support are all places in which a legal support professional can develop specialized skills in high demand among law firms and corporate legal departments – particularly when the organization is one of the “slow adopters” in the legal field.
  3. Practice areas that need legal support staff most are often tech-heavy. Currently, the practice areas that are most in need of qualified legal support staff include healthcare, business and commercial law, and litigation – all fields in which technology has advanced considerably in recent years and in which issues of data management, confidentiality and security, and ownership are fast becoming hot-button issues. A legal support professional who knows the law in these areas and understands information technology is well-positioned to advance in a challenging and productive career.
  4. Legal support staff are often third-party vendor liaisons. Many law firms and legal departments turn to third-party IT support as a way to reduce costs and increase efficiency. Even when another company is responsible for maintenance and upgrades, however, it often falls to the legal support staff to liaise with these vendors and coordinate work. Being able to “talk the talk” will gain you respect from vendors and improve your ability to identify problems, implement solutions, and evaluate results.

At Kent Legal, our experienced recruiters help professionals find legal support jobs in Toronto that support their career growth. Contact us today to learn more!

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