The LTP: A Perfect Platform For Young Lawyers
Insights from Toh Ming Min, BR Law Corporation & Muslim Albakri, Albakri LLC
As Lupl’s Director of Asia-Pacific, I recently had the pleasure of hosting four webinars with our early adopters and partners in Singapore about all things legal tech.
For this next session , we had a group discussion between myself, and two very special guests:
- Toh Ming Min: Senior Associate at BR Law Corporation, a specialist in conveyancing, and a proud digital evangelist.
- Muslim Albakri: Managing Director of Albakri LLC, a specialist in commercial litigation and criminal defense, and entering his ninth year of private practice.
Together we discussed the many benefits that they have experienced since adopting the Legal Technology Platform (LTP), powered by Lupl, and especially how they have used the platform to help train their juniors young lawyers.
This article is a summary of the webinar, I hope you enjoy it!
Want to check out the other webinars? See how Lupl helped this virtual law firm thrive, or a deep dive into the future of legal tech.
Before the LTP came into the picture
I first wanted to really understand what professional life was like for both of my guests before they started using the LTP. There were three main pain points that were made clear right away:
Unfamiliarity with Tech Solutions
Both of my guests talked about the lack of training and education that is given to law students when it comes to legal tech.
While processes, legal procedures, and research are diligently covered by universities, how that can all be done through tech is woefully neglected.
‘I had one class on file management and that was it…’Toh Ming Min, Senior Associate at BR Law Corporatio
This leads to many young lawyers coming into the professional world uncomfortable and distrustful of tech – feelings that do not easily fall away later in their careers. For people like Muslim and Ming Min, who want to reap all the benefits that come with using tech, it can therefore be very difficult to onboard new and better solutions.
Apps All Scattered About
Before the LTP, Muslim was using several apps to perform the most basic admin tasks.
Switching between different programs and relying on them to all be operational at the same time slowed down work and put an extra layer of background stress on Muslim – not what you need when you’re managing a new firm by yourself.
It was only when he hired his secretary and she pointed out how hard it was to formalize processes, that Muslim realized how truly problematic the situation was.
In order to grow his practice, he needed everything streamlined into one place.
Hard to Keep Track of Tasks and Documents
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, both Ming Min and Muslim’s firms had to rapidly digitize, and it soon became clear how inefficient physical documents were. Notably, Ming Min recalled being shocked with how much the conveyancing department relied on physical folders and books, and thus how hard it was for them to adapt to the pandemic.
Task delegation was also a big issue for both of them as matters can often have so many different components that need specific people attached to them. Post-it notes were bad enough, but muddles of email threads and WhatsApp group messages were equally inefficient – especially when Muslim’s team started to grow.
‘It was only when we had an extra team member that I realized that we had to start having better ways of tracking tasks.’Muslim Albakri, Managing Director of Albakri LLC
Wrapped up in all these points was the issue of onboarding new team members and junior lawyers, especially when it came to remote working.
It is hard to ask for help in the legal profession – it is not like college where professors are on hand to go back-and-forth with – as experienced lawyers are constantly busy. But as with any job, the need to ask questions and get clarification on certain things is really important.
The bottom line is that young legal professionals need the right support and guidance if they are to grow into their roles.
How The LTP helped pave a better training path
The solution to these problems came to Ming Min and Muslim in the form of the LTP. What was thought of as just a legal project management platform to help manage their matters, turned out to also be a powerful center for learning.
Custom Matter Templates
Custom matter templates were soon recognized as crucial for standardizing internal processes and guiding less experienced legal professionals.
The LTP provides users with matter templates straight out of the box, and gives the capacity for creating your own templates too. Muslim, for example, created his own custom probate template and soon saw that this cut down documentation time by half for his less experienced colleagues.
Ming Min also sang the praises of matter templates in streamlining usually very manual processes:
‘So much better to set things down in an easy-to-follow format – especially for new staff. We’ve seen time savings of 20-30%!’Toh Ming Min, Senior Associate at BR Law Corporatio
Suggested reading: Check out our handy guide on what matter templates are and how they can work for you!
As explained above, task management is an enormous hurdle for law firms to overcome.
The LTP makes this easy, however, with clear task delegation functionality which allows lawyers and legal project managers to assign team members not only to specific matters, but specific tasks within those matters.
Everyone, therefore, knows exactly what they need to do and when, and more experienced lawyers can clearly track their trainees’ progress.
Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing
Lawyers can hardly train young professionals without being able to easily share their knowledge – broken telephone syndrome over emails simply doesn’t cut it.
Aside from providing a WhatsApp integration to share documents seamlessly, the LTP has also developed its own internal chat function so that both internal and external stakeholders can securely collaborate on matters and projects.
Furthermore, Ming Min described how since adopting the LTP, many of the experienced staff have started to share their documents through the platform’s cloud storage and matter-linking system. Muslim, on the other hand, has found the Pins feature really useful for collating research and news articles – which can be essential training material.
What’s more is that when a matter is closed, all of the documents, notes, and information attached to it do not disappear but are just archived, so that it becomes a repository of knowledge from which young lawyers can study from.
LTP helps junior lawyers get up to speed
If there is one key thing I took away from our chat, it was that law firms must provide the right tools for young lawyers to learn the trade with. Better training leads to faster competence, which ultimately leads to a more successful firm.
With easy to use platforms such as the LTP, law firms can empower their junior team members to take the initiative and get up to speed, without having to take up too much of a lawyer’s time.
To close the webinar, I asked my guests what their last pieces of advice would be about adopting the LTP:
- Ming Min: ‘Take a look at the template guide, it was an unexpected benefit – the IMDA templates on data privacy were especially useful.’
- Muslim: ‘Demonstrate the value of the platform so that people use it.’
I want to thank both of them once again for coming to talk to us and providing their valuable insights.
We are proud of what the LTP has accomplished so far, but are always looking to see how we can innovate and improve. It’s clear that there’s so much law firms can do already with the LTP and Lupl in the educational space, and we are excited to see where this journey takes us next.
Want to see how Lupl can empower your junior lawyers? Book a demo today!
Marcus has over 10 years of experience in the legal world as a practitioner, mediator, trainer, and Assistant Adjunct Lecturer at the National University of Singapore. He is passionate about bringing the legal profession the tools they need to succeed and is now Lupl’s Director of Asia-Pacific. You can follow him on LinkedIn here.