Some reading for a cold night — which we’ve been in no shortage of here in Chicago. These are some of the voices I’ve been hearing and are shaping my thinking on our purpose here at Nextpoint. These sources seem to be confirmation that we’re moving into a phase of tremendous change in the legal industry. I hope you enjoy them as much as I have!
Cisco General Counsel on The State of Technology In the Law
Mark Chandler gave this speech about a year ago at Northwestern Law School. Even just a year away, its clear the change this speech portends is becoming reality. This speech has had a profound influence on the direction of our business. Truly groundbreaking, I continue to look back to this piece regularly.
The associated discussion on the WSJ law blog rocks too.
The Way of the Mastadon
Another tech GC — this time Sun GC Mike Dillon — and a great post on law firm economics. Not to mention Mastadons are cool
Software as a service: The next big thing
I was turned on to this article in InfoWorld by Dennis Kennedy’s webblog. Dennis has been a long-time advocate of hosted application models for law firms. This is an InfoWeek article on Software as a Service (SaaS). We think these technologies have significant implications for legal technology.
Uh-oh, associate retention
Retention is a critical issue for our large law firm customers. And it’s becoming harder. This is an article by a former GC for GE discusses the findings of a study done by ABA and Harvard of 4000 law firm graduates. It paints a rather bleak picture, even with fast escalating associate salaries at the top tier firms. We think better technology is a critical underpinning of any efforts to improve associate retention rates.
Early in their careers, far too many associates are given a steady diet of drudge work: reviewing documents; reading e-mails; organizing schedules for transactions; researching small, tangential issues.
If you are one of those folks who like source documents, here is a link to the study itself:
Less Software is More
The least specifically legal related, 37Signals products and market approach are something I’ll always keep an eye on. Not so much because we didn’t know a lot of this stuff already, its how we’ve been approaching trial preparation for years. But it was definitely a revelation to hear that the same thing goes for software development. For better or worse, the founders of this company are virtual superstars Web 2.0 develoment circles. Without question there will be things in it you don’t like. That’s the idea.
Also a link to their company blog: http://www.37signals.com/svn/