Having shaken up the world of bricks-and-mortar retailing, technology entrepreneurs are employing cut-price, online offerings to disrupt pricey professional services for example law and recruitment.
Thirty minutes having a city lawyer costs a minimum of $200, but clients of your newly launched LawPath website can consult a professional practitioner only for $29. With the opposite end in the spectrum, engaging legal recruitment may mean a placement and other hefty fees. Yet not in the event you engage them through the hour, online, on RecruitLoop.
Technology entrepreneurs use cut-price, online offerings to disrupt professional services like law.
Technology entrepreneurs are utilizing cut-price, online offerings to disrupt professional services like law. Photo: JESSICA SHAPIRO
Paul Lupson is chief executive of Lawpath, a start-up financially backed by Ludson who recently successfully exited budgetplaces.com, technology lawyer Nick Abrahams, partner at Norton Rose Australia, and technologist Andy Rose.
Lupson says the site lets people who wouldn’t normally be capable of afford an attorney to get a basic consultation for little outlay. Customers pay the low fee to question a subject, LawPath pockets the fee and farms the enquiry over to a specialist lawyer who consults for free. In exchange, lawyers may convert the session right into a contract for further work, something Lupson says has happened in 50 per cent of cases.
Lupson insists the arrangement is win-win, with business and private individuals receiving professional advice and lawyers generating leads. Besides, lawyers’ modus operandi is overdue for the re-think, he says.
“The legal profession is one of the last channels to be modernised. I actually do see it like a disruption yet not in the bad way – in a efficiency way. It’s about understanding how the web can facilitate connecting with clients.”
The model has found favour with the technology sector, he says, from it start-ups comprising 50 per cent of clientele currently.
“It’s not devaluing [lawyers’] work – they’re very happy for taking it,” Lupson says. “They’re up to the loss leader.”
The phrase disruptive innovation is commonly used to explain change that improves a product or service in such a way the marketplace failed to expect.
Since the coming of the world wide web it’s become increasingly common and happens 1000s of times more frequently than three decades ago, in accordance with David Roberts, a vice-president of 77dexrpky Valley’s Singularity University.
“Disruption will be all that matters having a start-up,” Roberts told delegates with the Australia Association of Angel Investors conference about the Gold Coast last month.
RecruitLoop founder Michael Overell hopes his venture will offer the recruitment sector a comparable jolt.
The website allows companies to engage independent recruitment consultants by the hour, as opposed to paying commission with an agency in line with the candidate’s salary, each time a role is filled.
RecruitLoop had a low-key launch eighteen months ago and would be to present an impromptu showcase of its system at San Francisco’s Launch Festival for high-tech start-ups earlier this month.
The annual event includes competitions judged by IT and venture-capital heavyweights including Rackspace’s Robert Scoble and Google Ventures’ Wesley Chan.
The normal spend by RecruitLoop customers is $1500 to $2000 per role, which buys 15 to 20 hours of any consultant’s time. RecruitLoop needs a commission as high as 30 per cent.
For clients, it’s a saving of 80-90 percent on fees charged by recruitment agencies, Overell says.
Recruiters are screened prior to being able to offer their services through the site and just one out of eight receives the guernsey.
“We’re being really tough about maintaining quality,” Overell says.
The organization uses 50 recruiters across Australia, Nz, Dubai and also the west coast from the US and wants to expand into other countries as demand builds.