Thinking out Cloud Translating Tech to Business

Resources to Make You Cloud-Battle Ready

We have devoted many columns over the past two years of this column analyzing law firms’ buying behaviors and overall attitude related to cloud computing. Why are firms moving to the cloud? Why now? How fast? And how deep?

Jobst Elster

With each article, we have taken a deeper dive into the legal cloud. So we thought this 2019 kick-off issue would be ideal for sharing a variety of cloud resources law firms can rely on as they navigate the winding cloud technology road. We have asked some legal cloud experts to chime in on their favorite cloud resource.

The International Legal Technology Association provides useful cloud-related survey results. For example, the ILTA 2018 survey includes insights from over 481 firms representing more than 92,000 attorneys and 188,000 total users.

According to Dan Anderson, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder of SeeUnity, a provider of content integration, migration and synchronization products for law firms, the ILTA surveys — along with Forrester Research, the Association of Intelligent Information Management (AIIM) and Gartner, a research and advisory company — provide useful statistics and cloud benchmarks. While ILTA is by far the most specialized resource for law firms, the others provide broader technology and business data.

Nicole Black, a well-known legal technology author (including of the ABA’s Cloud Computing for Lawyers), journalist and speaker, also shared her favorites. “My top resource when it comes to the latest statistics on lawyers using cloud computing is the ABA’s Annual Legal Technology Survey Report. It provides lots of great insight and data regarding the number of lawyers and law firms using cloud computing and how they use it.”

Simon Elven, Commercial and Marketing Director for London-based Tikit, favors Briefing’s Legal IT Landscapes 2018 research, an annual poll from a cross-section of predominantly large law firms assessing their appetite and interest in cloud technologies and other platforms.

“Many of the supporting technologies that firms are looking for are implemented, or better implemented, on a cloud platform — and thus, the other significant trend here is increased adoption of cloud technologies.”

“Many of the supporting technologies that firms are looking for are implemented, or better implemented, on a cloud platform — and thus, the other significant trend here is increased adoption of cloud technologies. In general, cloud services will have overall benefits for the firm in terms of agility for end users and a reduction in the effort required by IT to support such systems,” says Elven.

Some other excellent resources:

ABA: The ABA’s Legal Technology Resource Center, which aggregates the most relevant surveys, blogs, articles and commentary about legal technology and the cloud, is definitely worth perusing and bookmarking. While you’re at it, check out the Cloud Computing for Lawyers resource page for more useful cloud information.

ALA Resources: The cloud content provided by your very own ALA in the form of webinars, conference educational sessions and articles in Legal Management are right at your fingertips and not to be ignored.

Attorney at Work: This invaluable resource provides a new idea, tip and trick each day designed to help improve its readers’ lawyering. This, of course, includes navigating the cloud. The recent “Tech Systems: Making Your Move to the Cloud” is a must-read.

CSA: The Cloud Security Alliance exists to promote the use of best practices for providing security assurance within cloud computing and to provide education on the uses of cloud computing to help secure all other forms of computing. The site provides numerous resources, guides, reports and statistics to help law firms address the all in important cloud security challenge.

“For coverage of the latest security issues regarding cloud and online computing, Sharon Nelson and John Simek’s blog, Ride the Lightening, can’t be beat,” adds Black. “Similarly, their book, The 2018 Solo and Small Firm Legal Technology Guide, provides solo and small-firm lawyers with an incredible amount of useful advice on choosing the right legal technologies, including cloud-based software, with an entire chapter devoted to law practice management software.”

Speaking of blogs, no cloud resource list would be complete without mentioning DennisKennedy.Blog, a comprehensive resource for anything legal technology-related, including cloud computing, technology innovation and futures. Site Founder Dennis Kennedy is a well-known lawyer, author, blogger, speaker and podcaster, considered among the most influential authorities on the application of technology in the practice of law. In addition to the blog, he and fellow legal influencer Tom Mighell record the Kennedy-Mighell Report, a Legal Talk Network podcast that regularly covers cloud technology topics and the latest cloud surveys.

Lastly, when in doubt, check out popular cloud technology providers like Clio, iManage, HighQ, MyCase, NetDocuments and Smokeball for practical articles, guides, e-books and other resources related to “going cloud.” These companies and others are the pioneers in the legal cloud space and have long realized that proper education and useful information are the starting point of any law firm cloud dialogue.