Some 51 Queensland-based lawyers were surveyed and the research found that they actually increased their productivity and professional practice, regardless of age – with no significant difference in respondents aged 35 and under, compared to those over 35.
Negative effects of technology
It found that speed and connectivity, flexibility and digital technologies being conducive to legal work were the main reasons for positively affecting productivity and professional practice. However, the same positive factors also had negative aspects when considering respondent satisfaction and quality of life. For example, it found that the speed and connectivity of digital technologies can create unrealistic expectations in the workplace and flexibility of working out of the office intrudes into an employee’s personal life.
Legal workplaces are also not using the full potential of digital technologies, the survey found, with the support and improvement of digital technologies in law firms largely focused on efficiencies, processes and productivity which included the recording of billable hours resulting in a major source of stress for lawyers.
And despite the ubiquity of digital technologies in the modern age face-to-face communication was a clear winner in both productivity and satisfaction.