• AI should soon have a seat at the table regarding the business of law, not just the practice of law. As this article from the HBR explains, business strategy can become much more powerful through application of AI.

“The processing power of four smart consultants with excel spreadsheets is minuscule in comparison to a single smart computer using AI running for an hour, based on continuous, non-stop machine learning, … AI can also bring greater clarity to annual budgeting processes, by tracking the return on investments by business unit, or by measuring how much is allocated to growing versus declining product lines.”

The article further suggests that “AI May Soon Replace Even the Most Elite Consultants.”

“AI can also help support more complex decisions in key areas such as human resources, budgeting, marketing, capital allocation and even corporate strategy — long the bastion of bespoke consulting firms such as McKinsey, Bain, and BCG, and the major marketing agencies.”

 

  • And, as I have posted before, one of the low hanging fruit areas of law firm management for the application of AI is HR. Particularly in five areas:

1. Personalization: Personalizing the process of learning at the corporate level and recording critical employee data relating to a broad spectrum of behaviours and learning patterns.

2. Improved Recruitment: HR is a highly human-centric realm. Since human beings are complicated creatures, it’s very hard to acquire basic analysis-focused data on individuals during the hiring process. This is where AI helps in predictive analytics using natural language, thus speeding up the recruitment process by empowering businesses to weed out undesirable candidates faster, while committing far fewer mistakes.

3. Workflow Automation: AI is poised to be a game-changer when it comes to workflow problems. Automating processes like interview scheduling, employee performance reviews, employee on-boarding, and even the answering of basic HR questions – all fall under this category.

4. Better prediction models: Prediction models are vital in improving efficiency, productivity and overall cost effectiveness for any organization. This is where AI works its magic by analyzing turnover rates, internal employee engagement levels and communications or any other unforeseen problems that could take months or years to be visibly surface. Artificial Intelligence will always be one step ahead of companies themselves.

5. Reducing Hiring Biases: One of AI’s fundamental goals should naturally be to help companies build a stronger & more diverse workforce. This means that the data being used to train the AI should be as unbiased as possible, so it can really help businesses increase their employment equity in an honest way.

 

  • This post by the always-sharp “Three Geeks and a Law Blog” argues that a major impediment to law firms’ embracing of new technologies is the up front investment required. They title the post “Fear of Change Trumps Loss of Billable Hours.” So that’s two excuses for not embracing AI and other technologies. There are more in the text. But mark my words, clients are going to run roughshod over firms that don’t get on the “better, faster, cheaper” bandwagon PDQ. (For evidence, see anything from CLOC.)

 

  • Seems this company (Pramata) has been around for quite a while, but it’s new to me. In the legal space:

“… they are effectively working with legal documents, i.e. sales contracts, for example, the insights that the company looks for with natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning are very much focused on giving the client a better understanding of their own client relationships.”

 

 

  • This debate could get interesting: “Elon Musk dismissed Mark Zuckerberg’s understanding of the threat posed by artificial intelligence as “limited,” after the Facebook founder disparaged comments Musk made on the subject earlier this month.”

 

  • Are you ready to have your first implanted microchip (to be “microchipped”)? One company‘s employees seem to be.

 

  • Need some great quotes to liven up your next presentation on AI? Here they are!