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Digitalisation is the Only Way Forward for Conveyancing

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A digital approach to conveyancing – and indeed for almost everything else – is the future. COVID-19 has become the catalyst for digitalisation that no one could have ever predicted for the conveyancing sector. This said, change has been already been rife in the conveyancing sector over the last decade.  

Customers are driving change
The biggest catalyst for change is the increasing expectation of customers. They are demanding interactive online engagement, fewer staged touchpoints, more efficiency from the conveyancing process, different and even more current forms of communication, and overall a smoother journey as they navigate the transaction process.  Receiving reems of documents through the post, populating them, returning via post, and then booking a face to face meeting with a lawyer to sign paperwork, for many consumers feels like a step back in time.

Technology can facilitate a superior customer experience, and some conveyancers are beginning to embrace IT. Simplify and O’Neill Patient, have underpinned their business with case management technology to streamline processes, but also have the capability to make incremental improvements for the future.

Start from the very beginning  
Conveyancing firms can make strides in the way they deliver service, and this current period of lull is potentially a good time for this kind of business introspection.

Start from the beginning – right when a customer makes contact to obtain a quote. In a systematic manner, map the typical client journey and processes to evaluate the progression of a conveyancing transaction across its lifecycle – the touchpoints, the technologies used, the common glitches and so on. An easy win lies in making the conveyancing process online and digital so that both the firm and customers can interact with an application and its processes when they want, how they want and from whatever device they want, including PC, smartphone, mobile apps, and online portals.

Remove repetitive demands for standard information such as contact details with electronic ID verification processes, offering online/digital welcome packs, and using digital signatures to do away with wet ink signatures. Likewise, think about introducing the ability to communicate with customers through online chats, video calls, and app-based messaging – strategically placing human intervention in the process, eliminating unnecessary open-ended questions that hold up applications, and so on. The list is, of course, endless.

All this combined will help eliminate steps that delay the progression of applications, and make the process intuitive and easy to follow, for conveyancers, third parties and the customers.

Data digitisation is fundamental
Digitisation of data is fundamental and an operational imperative. HM Land Registry is already moving towards a fully digital model. Following HM Land Registry’s acceptance of electronic signatures in July, the first electronically signed deeds have recently been submitted to HM Land Registry by The Partnership. More broadly, digitised data can deliver business insights to allow informed decision making and business operation. Firms will be able to monitor quality standards, that typically are considered difficult to quantify. Conveyancers will be able to take advantage of a range of new and emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, biometrics and blockchain to enable them to evolve business models and launch highly specialised and innovative services.  

Current systems and services consumed are full of valuable data.  Case management systems are built to tap into this knowledge. Think about the data that is currently held, what the software application can do with that data, and what processes could be triggered by the system.  For example, knowing that an enquiry remains outstanding doesn’t need a conveyancer to check it. Knowing that a search is about to go out of date doesn’t require a human to order a new one.   

This is a good time to engage with your service provider and see what they can do to help you emerge stronger. As LexisNexis, we are actively working with clients to enable them to better leverage the resources that they already have.

The difficulties that the conveyancing sector is experiencing today are challenging, but temporary. Current circumstances are unprecedented, but we have seen the success stories that have come from prior recessions and down turns, today is the time to think about how you will become one of the next success stories.

Tags: Visualfiles

About the Author:

Simon leads the Go-To-Market (GTM) function at LexisNexis® Enterprise Solutions with overall responsibility for the Sales, Business Development, Marketing, Sales Operations & Client Engagement Teams. Simon is responsible for ensuring that we develop and enhance our customer relationships and grow our presence within our chosen markets, helping our valued clients gain greater value from their investment with us.


Simon has been with LexisNexis for six years. He has worked on a number of key strategic client growth programmes leading our Client Engagement Team across the Enterprise Solutions portfolio. He has also acted as Global Account Director for some of our largest international clients. He is a qualified Lawyer, Project Manager and Business Analyst. Simon has over twenty years’ experience in the legal services sector and spent many years of his career practicing law within a number of notable regional practices and subsequently headed IT, Development and Comms for a Top 100, 450 user Law Firm, in his time there implementing Lexis Visualfiles, Microsoft CRM, iManage, Bighand, Artiion and Aderant solutions, to name a few.

Other Hobbies/areas of interest

Simon is a competitive sailor, a technology addict, a motorsports enthusiast and enjoys spending time outdoors with his family.

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