- COVID-19 has created a burning platform for technology adoption in the legal sector, accelerating the trend towards simplifying and automating processes in the cloud.
- One example of technology-enabled simplification is Property Exchange Australia (PEXA), Australia’s national e-conveyancing platform, which has seen a four-fold increase in usage in some states.
- According to PEXA Chief Customer Officer Lisa Dowie, e-conveyancing not only increases productivity and avoids delays, it can also help firms attract and retain skilled staff.
The last few years have seen Australian legal practices increasingly harnessing technology to drive efficiency and productivity. Now COVID-19 has accelerated that process, with firms adopting cloud-based systems to simplify collaboration across a range of practice areas – especially conveyancing.
“I think COVID-19 has exposed the fragility of paper-based processes,” says Lisa Dowie, Chief Customer Officer for e-conveyancing platform Property Exchange Australia (PEXA). “It's really highlighted the agility and flexibility that digital solutions enable.”
“Members have reached out to me saying how thankful they are that their businesses can be fully digital and online, and they don't have to worry about not meeting their customers' expectations.”
In the last six months, PEXA has seen usage increase four-fold in some states, with 75% of transactions nationally now taking place through the platform. This number is set to rise too – with the South Australian government recently transitioning all its property transactions online, and Queensland and the ACT increasing their adoption of digital conveyancing.
“In South Australia, a large proportion of settlements were all held in the one settlement room in Adelaide, at a particular time,” said Chief Customer Officer for PEXA Lisa Dowie. “Then that settlement room was closed suddenly one Friday morning [by COVID-19 restrictions]. In the last two months, our customer base there has grown by 17%.”