The law is a rapidly changing profession. What worked one quarter may not work the next. That’s why lawyers need to be open to new ideas at every turn. One area that deserves close attention is law new, a term used to describe alternative legal services providers, startups and in-house legal teams that are creating their own paths and disrupting traditional practices. What’s more, these firms are often growing much faster than their traditional counterparts. That makes this a practice area that all legal professionals should understand and learn from.
It’s not easy to define law new, since it typically means a new way of providing legal services and a business model that is non-traditional. But in general, it is a practice area that aims to be more collaborative and transparent, affordable, efficient, and data-backed. This type of approach is necessary because significant global challenges cannot be mastered by a single function, enterprise, or stakeholder group alone. It also reflects the fluidity of today’s business environment, in which competitors frequently collaborate on innovative projects and strategies.
One of the biggest factors shaping law new is the rise of corporate Goliaths that have the capital, brand, know-how, and customer-centricity to disrupt traditional legal practice. This is a form of convergence that’s likely to continue. These large-scale players are the “alternative legal services providers” (ALSPs) who have the resources, scale, capital, savvy, footprint in and familiarity with the industry, technology platforms, multidisciplinary workforces, and agile processes to compete with traditional law firm models.
This is a different kind of competition than we’ve seen before in the legal industry, with large-scale companies taking a more hands-on role than in the past. The goal is to help businesses with complex legal issues, manage risks and regulatory compliance in a cost-effective way, free up management time for strategic initiatives, and produce more accurate and data-backed risk assessments and business decisions.
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