How to Get Your Legal Firm Digital Ready

3 outcomes your law firm can achieve through interconnection

Ollie Imoru

Today’s corporate lawyers are looking for ways to expand their services and add new value to their clients. Global law firms that practice across borders are also looking to deliver digital law services that enable clients in different regions to have fast and easy access to key information and services in an efficient manner.

One approach that solves all of these challenges is to adopt a distributed platform model that allows you to tailor value chains for creating innovative legal services at the digital edge. By shifting from a centralized, core data center model to a global interconnection platform that connects IT services, partners and clients, your IT organization can transition from providing traditional, fee-based business products to outcome-based digital services.

Law firms are facing a more competitive digital marketplace

The following market trends are causing law firms to seek more flexible and agile digital solutions to better serve their clients:

  • Corporate legal firms are specializing in the industry sectors and disciplines they serve to add more value to their clients, in addition to knowing the law. This requires them to capture and analyze more industry data to gain insights so they can better represent their clients’ interests.
  • Increasing data volumes require law firms to adopt new applications (e.g., artificial intelligence, analytics, etc.) that will enable them to gain timely client and industry insights, enhancing their ability to provide exceptional experiences or deliver new digital legal services to market.
  • More empowered, mobile employees and clients are demanding consistent digital experiences across all types of devices to work outside of their offices on a global basis.

A variety of constraints prevent legal firms from addressing these challenges. For starters, business applications are often trapped in centralized data centers resulting in poor customer quality of experience (QoE). In addition, legal services and data are often centralized and siloed, isolated from relevant networks, business partners and clients. These legacy IT architectures also make it difficult to integrate new technologies such as analytics and artificial intelligence (AI). And even when new technologies—such as cloud services—are implemented, they are often architected as mere extensions of legacy IT infrastructures. As such, it is almost impossible to fully harness the value, scalability and intelligence these technologies can offer.

The solution to all of these issues is a flexible digital business infrastructure that is supported by multiple partners and network and cloud providers at the digital edge, close to users, applications and data. Deploying private interconnection on a globally distributed platform that directly and securely connects people, locations, clouds, data and things is a good place to begin.

Getting your legal services infrastructure digital ready

By leveraging Interconnection Oriented Architecture™ (IOA™) best practices, you can develop a digital-ready infrastructure that will enable you to increase client-centric engagement, aggregate critical data, and extend access to distributed networks and clouds at the digital edge. You can also gain local operational insights faster on growing volumes of data via real-time analytics, AI, and protect law firms and client data while maintaining compliance.

By following the design patterns in the IOA Legal Blueprint, your firm can achieve the following outcomes:

1. Differentiate the user experience using direct interconnection to deliver consistent and cost-effective performance. This can be achieved by establishing a strategic global presence adjacent to clients, partner ecosystems and data exchanges via high-bandwidth, low-latency connections. You can also extend your global reach while improving user experience and information access.

2. Reduce business risk with a private interconnection platform. Simplify and standardize on a single global interconnection and data center platform that enables direct and secure access to cloud partners, and enforces consistent IT policies and compliance. You can also enhance collaboration with clients, partners and service providers by leveraging proximity to digital and business ecosystems.

3. Scale data capture, processing and analytics through a distributed interconnected ecosystem. Capture real-time data intelligence where it’s generated and dynamically adapt and scale the service delivery value-chain based on client and user needs.

 Global law firm leverages interconnection to expand its legal services

HFW, a 136-year-old law firm based in the United Kingdom (UK) is undergoing a digital transformation to prepare for its next wave of growth. As one of the first UK-based law firms to expand internationally, HFW now generates more than 60% of its revenue outside of the UK and has seen its international revenue triple in the past seven years.

The global law firm collaborated with Equinix to build out its digital edge in key markets including London, Dubai, Hong Kong, Melbourne and Paris. As a critical element of their digital transformation journey, HFW leveraged IOA best practices to distribute its IT closer to customers and employees, enabling the firm to improve its overall user QoE. Utilizing Equinix for its data center needs allowed HFW to free up valuable internal resources and redirect them to the development of value-added services, improving customer experience while increasing revenue and reducing costs. Equinix’s global interconnection and data center platform gave HFW the scale and reach to keep up with its rapid pace of change and achieve digital readiness.

HFW CIO Chris White said, “Business architectures built on an interconnection platform gain the ability to integrate value chains, enable ecosystem collaboration and provide transparency—all of which we have found on Platform Equinix. Data captured and analyzed near business partners, consumers and service providers enables real-time insights that drive efficiency and reduce costs. As a result, HFW is truly a customer-centric, industry-leading digital legal services firm.”

Learn more about how to build digital-ready infrastructures for your law firm by reading the IOA Legal Blueprint.

Ollie Imoru
Ollie Imoru Legal sector lead – Data Centre/Cloud Technology Services