Law firms have the same problems as many other organizations that are trying to move from dealing primarily with physical documents to digital assets. However, because of the nature of their work, any efforts to boost efficiency in this way will typically be far more beneficial for those in the legal profession than just about any other field.

The sheer number of physical documents at even the smallest law practices can be daunting, so it makes sense that most firms have opted to make the process of simplifying operations by creating automated workflows their top priority, according to a recent poll from Thomson Reuters. Often, this can be done with a comprehensive plan for document digitization that includes backfile scanning.

Other findings
In addition to simply focusing on implementing such changes, law firms are increasingly following through on their actions, with a total 45 percent increase of use of such technology in recent years, the survey found. Moreover, about 1 in 3 firms say they're further increasing their tech budgets to meet these needs on an ongoing basis.

What's the end goal?
Ideally, law firms would be able to adopt this technology as a means of freeing up potentially thousands of man hours for lawyers, clerks and aides over the course of a given year, according to Contract Works. Just about everyone in the legal field spends large amounts of time on tedious tasks that could, ideally, be optimized via implementation of document scanning technology in conjunction with artificial intelligence or machine learning.

When considering their needs in this regard, law firms should take a hard look at their current processes and consider ways in which they could meaningfully improve them. A little research into the available options could go a long way toward determining the best course of action.