Top 5 African Legal Tech Trends From ACGC

Legal Interact attended, presented and sponsored this year’s African Corporate & Government Counsel Forum (ACGC) Conference in Kampala, Uganda. The event brought together the cream of the crop in the African legal tech space, which means we were privileged to identify these 5 African legal tech trends everyone should be taking note of.

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1. African Legal Tech Protects In-House Counsel

As part of an organisation or business’s in-house counsel, you have the important responsibility of being the company’s custodian of regulatory compliance, according to ACGC attendee Jane Okot p’Bitek-Langoya, Chartered Governance Institute. This means that in-house counsel members have to (amongst other things):

  • First establish what compliance measures are required to be implemented based on regulatory frameworks,
  • Then ensure compliance processes are implemented and followed company-wide,
  • Then ensure compliance frameworks are regularly updated based on regulatory updates and the company is updated on the changes,
  • Establish processes where compliance processes were not followed or not implemented according to regulatory updates. 

As you can see, this is not a simple process and is a high-risk function of in-house counsel members. Therefore, it is paramount for in-house counsel members to take advantage of legal tech, like Legal Interact’s Matter Manager, to ensure consistent compliance for the company and to avoid legal liability for in-house counsel members. 

2. Legal Tech Aligns With The Evolving Legal Industry​

According to ACGC attendee, Phiona Kiwanuka, JumiaPay, the legal space has and continues to evolve. 

Using legal tech should be part of any legal practice, in-house counsel or commercial organisation’s key tools to ensure they can grow with the times, and function in a relevant and innovative way.

3. Legal Tech Empowers Legal Practitioners​

Allan Rwakakooko, Head of Legal Services, Umeme Ltd, made the following important statement during ACGC:

“Routine legal processes have to be handed over to legal tech, like Legal Interact’s Contract Manager and Matter Manager, to free-up time for the lawyers to do the real work”.

Many legal processes and reoccurring tasks can be handled by legal tech, which allows legal professionals and commercial organisations to focus on their areas of expertise without having to invest their precious time into mundane and reoccurring task. These tasks can be automated and optimised through the use of legal tech and can improve productivity, creativity and avoid mistakes. 

4. Legal Tech Aligns Business With Legal

One of the major themes that kept coming up when discussing African legal tech, was that the legal department is a partner to the business as a whole. Therefore, through legal tech, legal and business should align their goals and strategies. 

As a business’s strategic partner, its the responsibility of legal departments to advise the business about regulatory risks and assist with the implementation of strategy within the legal framework. Through the use of legal tech, legal departments can empower themselves by getting familiar with business objectives and aligning these with regulatory requirements. 

5. Legal Tech Supports Wellness In Business​

We recently shared an eGuide on how lawyers can effectively work remotely and the theme emerge again at ACGC. 

Organizations that will survive and thrive are those that can adapt and evolve through changing and challenging times” – Anne Abeja, Company Secretary and Chief Legal Officer, Housing Finance Bank.

By adopting and successfully implementing the right African legal tech, trust can be established and teams can be effectively managed and taken care of. 

To conclude, in order to not only survive in the evolving times, but to truly thrive, legal departments and commercial organisations need to adopt legal tech to enable them to reach their business goals, remain compliant with regulations, and free-up time for employees to do real human work. 

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