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We’re surrounded by technology, it’s everywhere and it’s readily available. Therefore, it’s very tempting when approaching a problem to start to design your solution and build something fresh before you’ve really assessed the problem. 

A major area that is often ignored, missed or forgotten about until it’s almost too late is process design. Starting with your as-is process and what it may look like in the future can seem like the boring part of a new project but it’s one of the most important. This critical step can add layers of insight, highlight additional areas for improvement and help figure out how technology can be effectively integrated.  

Here are eight areas that you should consider when assessing an existing process that will ultimately result in better tech adoption following implementation. 

1. Document the as-is process flow 

Start by documenting the step-by-step flow of the current process. Create a visual representation, such as a flowchart, to map out each stage, decision point, and interaction within the legal process. This provides a clear overview and helps identify dependencies. 

2. Interview key stakeholders and gather insight 

Engage with key stakeholders involved in the legal process, including attorneys, paralegals, support staff, and other relevant personnel. Conduct interviews, surveys, or workshops to gather their insights, experiences, and feedback about the existing workflow. Stakeholders often have valuable perspectives on pain points and inefficiencies. 

3. Analyse your data model and key metrics

Understand and analyse relevant data and metrics associated with the process. This could include record and task data, turnaround times, error rates, resource utilisation, and other performance indicators. Data analysis can provide quantitative insights into the efficiency and effectiveness of the current process. 

4. Identify pain points and bottlenecks 

Identify pain points, bottlenecks, and areas where the process may be slowing down or causing delays. This can involve analysing feedback from stakeholders, reviewing historical data, or conducting observations of the workflow in action. Pinpointing these issues is crucial for targeted improvement efforts. 

5. Review documentation and communication

Examine the documentation and communication channels within the process. Ensure that information flows smoothly between different stages and that documentation is accurate and easily accessible. Identify any instances of redundant paperwork, manual data entry, or communication breakdowns. 

6. Consider External Factors

Consider external factors that may impact the legal process, such as regulatory changes, client expectations, or technological advancements. Understanding the external context helps in assessing the as-is process and helps influence the design of a new process that is adaptable and future-proof. 

7. Evaluate technology utilisation and integrations 

Assess the current technology stack and tools used in the legal process. Identify whether existing technologies are effectively supporting the workflow or if there are opportunities to leverage new technologies for improved efficiency or reduced complexity. Evaluate integration techniques to confirm whether current methods are still working or allow for improvement.

8. Map roles and responsibilities 

Clearly define the roles and responsibilities of each stakeholder involved in the process. This includes understanding who is responsible for specific tasks, decision points, and approvals. Mapping roles helps streamline communication and accountability.  

By employing these methods, you can gain a comprehensive understanding of the existing legal process. This knowledge serves as a foundation for making informed decisions about process improvements and for selecting the most appropriate technologies to enhance efficiency and effectiveness.  

Unfortunately, good process takes time and effort but the business benefits and gains are massive. Here at Autologyx, we work together with clients using our Workflow Design Canvas.

If you’re interested in learning more about this and how we could work together to uncover process improvements, please get in touch.