In a recent survey , LexisNexis® found that many in-house counsel look forward to a future where Artificial Intelligence (AI) tools will improve their workflow.
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This post was originally published in October 2019 and updated in September 2023.
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An Integrated Experience Allows Focus on High-Impact Legal Work
Lawyers face tremendous pressure to generate positive client outcomes in the most efficient, cost-effective manner possible. Moreover, as legal technology — driven by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning — continues to disrupt the business and practice of law, the stakes have never been higher. Lawyer productivity, measured by the familiar yardstick of billable hours and the ability to condense disparate tasks into more efficient workstreams, is more important than ever, especially as legal teams stave off business losses predicated by a global pandemic and face the challenges of adapting to remote work.
Central to the “technology as an enabler of efficiency” conversation is legal research. Lawyers and their support staff have always been tasked with making sense of a dizzying array of case law, parsing out legal briefs, reading and analyzing pertinent legislation, and more.
Today, it is paramount for attorneys to understand a client’s business problem or lawsuit through the lens of accurate and comprehensive legal research underscored by sophisticated technology. This technology should not only present results, but reveal actionable insights. Harnessing the power of data to drive case strategy is no longer a secret held close by the most tech-savvy attorneys. It is a near mandate in an industry that has seen its fair share of disruptions. At the highest levels, the application of data-driven insights results in data-driven law, which is transformative across the entire legal spectrum, yielding better customer outcomes, increased transparency and access to information in ways that were never previously possible.
Enhance Efficiencies with Lexis+
According to the 2020 Legal Analytics Study, conducted by ALM Intelligence and LexisNexis, 90 percent of legal professionals agree that using legal analytics makes them a better, more efficient and effective legal practitioner. The study also reveals that adoption of legal analytics is rapidly increasing — and that increase is expected to continue. Over the course of one year, 75 percent of respondents saw legal analytics usage increase within their organization, and 92 percent plan to increase their usage in the next year.1
It’s ironic, then, that many of the tools attorneys rely on to drive their research experience foster some of the inefficiencies that they exist to stamp out. While research tools have enhanced their sophistication and ease of use, attorneys still need to toggle between products to piece together the story that their research ultimately tells. What if an integrated solution could incorporate cutting-edge technology in an end-to-end platform that delivers research, data-driven insights and practical guidance all in the same product? Lexis+ –an all-in-one ecosystem of integrated legal solutions – enters the market as a new, holistic research experience.
“Lawyers have long been asking for ways to accomplish their everyday tasks more efficiently, and to be fast without sacrificing quality,” says Daniel Lewis, Vice President of Practical Guidance and Analytical Content at LexisNexis. “With Lexis+, we really thought about what attorneys need when they are carrying out the day-to-day tasks that make up their workflows.”
The idea, explains Lewis, was to provide a solution that would enhance and complement an attorney’s line of thinking by delivering quick results that allow him or her to maximize time, and complete legal work faster — ultimately leading to improved client satisfaction and business outcomes.
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Lawyers choose their “experience” at the Lexis+ homepage (Legal Research, Practical Guidance [attorney-authored practice-specific materials designed to help legal professionals quickly get up to speed on a particular matter], or Brief Analysis) and get started by typing in natural-language or Boolean search terms. The Legal Research experience prompts users to answer the question, “What would you like to research today?” With Brief Analysis — one of the game-changers in the legal tech world — users can upload a brief either they or someone else has authored and quickly return just that: an analysis of what has been written. It also points out what you may have missed (think cases that should have been considered for citation, etc.) in order to help strengthen the overall work product. The visualization and analysis tools help lawyers quickly find the most important cases against which to check their briefs, driving efficiency by delivering immediate insights. In the same vein, Practical Guidance delivers up-to-the-minute legal insights that allow lawyers to stay on top of changes in their practice, cutting out time-consuming manual research.
“This is a significant evolution,” says Lewis. “The idea is that Lexis+ is able to quickly bring the pieces from across the legal universe together, which offers users a new and powerful perspective.”
Again, Lewis says, it’s about how integrated workflows enable and facilitate efficiency. At the same time, however, the tool can act as something of an equalizer across the profession, with tools like Lexis+ bringing the power of technology into the hands of the user.
The implications are powerful. Small-firm or solo practitioners long had to find ways to outprepare their Big Law counterparts — especially because so much of the practice of law was driven by processes only humans could execute (writing briefs, researching, etc.). Today, the playing field has been somewhat leveled by tools such as Lexis+.
“Data-driven tools bring forward to an individual user insight that would take an army of associates to discover,” says Lewis. “It saves dozens and dozens of hours. There’s real value in having data at your fingertips.”
By the same token, sophisticated, integrated legal tools free up attorneys for higher-value work (or business development efforts), which has long been a benefit touted by their proponents. By spending less time completing rote tasks, attorneys can focus on delivering solutions to their clients, resulting in improved client satisfaction.
“There’s been a great deal of research that goes into mapping into detail the day-to-day tasks that lawyers are doing and spotting opportunities to make bits and pieces of this more efficient in order to define where the practice of law is going,” says Lewis. “Lawyers never have a shortage of tasks. To me it’s about how much further an attorney can go in the same amount of time.” By simplifying routine matters — but with the full force of LexisNexis research products behind it — Lexis+ clears the way for attorneys to handle their everyday business more efficiently and effectively than ever before.
1 “2020 Legal Analytics Study: Bringing Value Into Focus,” December 2019
Learn more about enhancing efficiency to drive results at LexisNexis.com/LexisPlus