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My law school experience revolved around the concepts of critical thinking, black letter law and learning how to navigate procedure. While these are all very important to master and at the heart of what attorneys are tasked to accomplish, once I entered the workforce I quickly realized that I was not prepared with the necessary training relating to the technological and operational side of legal practice.

The transformative properties of new technology have altered the way today’s attorneys handle day-to-day operations and created new demand for alternative skills. However, many attorneys still graduate from law school without learning the skills now needed to perform the operational functions of their job.

The response has been for law firms to develop new positions within their structure to make up for the operational experience gap. Positions like ‘legal project manager,’ ‘knowledge management specialist,’ ‘pricing analyst’ and ‘data analyst’ are becoming commonplace and all help to support attorneys as they navigate day-to-day operations. These positions (and others like them) will continue to play a big role in the industry, but some basic technological knowledge and operational preparation at the law school level would facilitate an easier transition for new attorneys.

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