What place for artificial intelligence in your practice?

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Firms can be hesitant when they hear about including artificial intelligence in their operations.

One in four law firms say they’re not interested in artificial intelligence, a 2020 American Bar Association survey showed. And one in three firms say they don’t know enough to answer.

These hesitations are mainly due to a lack of information… since many lawyers already use tools using artificial intelligence, such as Google or Face ID, on a daily basis. Others may have had a rough start with early AI tools, says Attorney at Work.

And then there’s this belief that artificial intelligence will replace humans at work. However, the primary interest of artificial intelligence is its ability to predict in repetitive tasks. Lawyers can thus concentrate on activities with high added value.

Artificial intelligence is also shaking up the mentalities that reign in the legal community. Thus, a lawyer may fear the arrival of this technology capable of processing hundreds of documents in a short time, while the lawyer reasons in terms of billable hours.

Yet the potential of artificial intelligence applies to practices of all sizes. In electronic evidence, predictive coding and active learning allow documents to be analyzed and classified accurately, based on the language used in the documents.

This technology can also analyze the sentiments expressed, for example in posts on social networks. She is able to identify the tone used by an employee to denigrate his employer.

Machine learning makes it possible to identify all the aliases of a person, regardless of how the person is referenced in the documents, that is to say the different ways in which their interlocutors refer to them.

All these contributions can constitute a real added value compared to the same work carried out by a human, even if this one is an excellent lawyer. It is still necessary to be able to measure where your practice is in carrying out these tasks. It would be futile to acquire artificial intelligence tools without being able to assess the productivity gain it gives you. This therefore requires the establishment of clear objectives.

If you decide to give a place to artificial intelligence in your operations, then you will have to go through an acclimatization phase… that of artificial intelligence with your documents, but also that of users with artificial intelligence. Technology needs to spend time on your documents to perform well. And your users must be continuously trained in the evolutions and updates of technology.

Artificial intelligence is capable of making your practice more efficient. It nevertheless remains a tool, which must be accompanied in its adoption, and whose effectiveness must be measured. Humans have a large lead in this area.

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