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Law firms have room to improve when it comes to leveraging social technology

Cindy Cheng, ​Sr. Director of Marketing Communications, EMEA, Appian
February 10, 2014

Social BPM is leading opportunities for growth and innovation in many industries, with more businesses adopting social tools to boost collaboration and overall efficiency. According to CMSWire and a recent study by Good2BSocial and Above the Law, however, many U.S. law firms have a lot of room for improvement in leveraging these technologies.

Social strategies are new endeavors for many law firms, but they are already limiting their own potential with these tools, the news source reported. Despite being in the early stages of deployment, many firms have been inconsistent with their efforts. The study noted that most are utilizing these channels primarily for their marketing purposes, rather than any in?-house processes. Every surveyed firm reported having a LinkedIn page, while 90 percent said they use Twitter, 64 percent use Facebook and only 30 percent had a presence on Google+. Furthermore, only 34 percent said they have a company blog - a key resource not only for connecting with clients but developing thought leadership and demonstrating a reputation for quality.

The main problem with this ineffectual deployment of social strategies lies in workflow and operational processes though. According to the report, few firms integrated their social media with internal communications, achieving low engagement and reach. Many firms are only sharing content in PDF formats, making the content "less digestible," and overall ineffective for internal or external communication. In fact, only 40 percent of firms indicated they even have a functioning intranet, with only occasional use of IM, wikis, message boards or other valuable internal resources.

The main issue that law firms need to tackle is their internal use of social media. By investing in improved BPM software that integrates social channels, firms can optimize their approach swiftly with all of the support necessary to integrate social workflows with their current practices. This will promote ease of use and ensure that they have deployed the necessary solutions the first time around. Ultimately, this will help employees embrace these tools more readily and ensure they need operational needs.

Adopting any new technology has to be a cautious affair. However, with the right BPM solutions in place, legal practices can ensure they are evolving with social business endeavors efficiently and proactively, expediting the processes as quickly as possible for maximum returns. This will help drive ROI and demonstrate the value of these efforts sooner as well.

Cindy Cheng

Director of Product Marketing