Global Technology on a Local Scale

by Andy Gutwein

I just returned from the American Bar Association Technology Show in Chicago (ABA Tech Show).  What a rush, absorbing the newest technology for law firms and learning from presentations by the Nation’s leading tech consultants. As I reflect on what I learned, I’m happy to know that our office is up to date and secure in our practices.  In fact, it seems we are quite a bit ahead of the curve because we have adopted paperless policies and have a leading document management utility in place.  Of course, there is always room for improvement and I was able to get inspired to improve some of our practices.

Like any business, we spend thousands of dollars per user each year on computer hardware, software, and tech support.  This investment allows us to be more responsive and more efficient in our services, and making the most of this investment is critical.  Our clients expect us to be efficient and not spend billable time on inefficient processes.  We understand this because we expect the same from professionals we do business with.   

New ideas come in various fashions, and in this situation I divide them into two categories:  First, what can we do with the technology we already have?  Second, are there additional products we should invest in to increase our efficiency?  I have identified, reinforced, and gained clarity on tasks in both categories.

The heart of our business is the advice we give and the representation we provide.  In the course of giving advice and providing representation, we frequently provide documents for the situation.  We spend time to understand our client’s situation.  This time allows us to prepare documents that suit the particular situation, and to prepare them with our client’s best interests in mind.  We must strive to provide documents in an efficient manner so that we use our time effectively.  The investment we make in our technology assists us in this goal, and as I get back to the office I am excited to implement some of the new ideas and experiences I’ve gained.


Andy Gutwein is co-founder and partner at Gutwein Law.  His professional emphasis is on estate planning, real estate and succession planning for established businesses.