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Having shaken up the world of bricks-and-mortar retailing, technology entrepreneurs are utilizing cut-price, online offerings to disrupt pricey professional services such as law and recruitment.

Half an hour by using a city lawyer costs no less than $200, but clients in the newly launched LawPath website can consult a specialist practitioner only for $29. On the other end of your spectrum, engaging legal recruitment may mean a placement and other hefty fees. Yet not if you engage them through the hour, online, on RecruitLoop.

Technology entrepreneurs are employing cut-price, online offerings to disrupt professional services for example law.

Technology entrepreneurs are using 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 website lets people who wouldn’t normally have the capacity to afford a legal professional to obtain a primary consultation for little outlay. Customers pay the low fee to question an issue, LawPath pockets the fee and farms the enquiry in the market to an expert lawyer who consults at no cost. In turn, lawyers may convert the session in a contract for further work, something Lupson says has happened in 50 percent of cases.

Lupson insists the arrangement is win-win, with business and private individuals receiving professional advice and lawyers lead generation. Besides, lawyers’ modus operandi is overdue to get a re-think, he says.

“The legal profession is amongst the last channels being modernised. I actually do see it as being a disruption however, not in the bad way – in an efficiency way. It’s about finding out how the net can facilitate connecting with clients.”

The model found favour together with the technology sector, he says, by using it start-ups comprising 50 per cent of clientele so far.

“It’s not devaluing [lawyers’] work – they’re very happy for taking it,” Lupson says. “They’re up for the loss leader.”

The word disruptive innovation is utilized to explain change that improves a service or product in ways the industry failed to expect.

Ever since the introduction of the internet it’s become increasingly common and happens 1000s of times more frequently than 3 decades ago, based on David Roberts, a vice-president of 77dexrpky Valley’s Singularity University.

“Disruption will be all that matters with a start-up,” Roberts told delegates on the Australia Association of Angel Investors conference around the Gold Coast recently.

RecruitLoop founder Michael Overell hopes his venture can give the recruitment sector a comparable jolt.

The internet site allows companies to engage independent recruitment consultants from the hour, rather than paying commission to a agency in line with the candidate’s salary, whenever a role is filled.

RecruitLoop enjoyed a low-key launch eighteen months ago and ended up being to present an impromptu showcase of the system at San Francisco’s Launch Festival for top-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 standard spend by RecruitLoop customers is $1500 to $2000 per role, which buys 15 to 20 hours of a consultant’s time. RecruitLoop needs a commission up to 30 %.

For clients, it’s a saving of 80-90 percent on fees charged by recruitment agencies, Overell says.

Recruiters are screened prior to being allowed to offer their services through the site and just one in eight receives the guernsey.

“We’re being really tough about maintaining quality,” Overell says.

The organization uses 50 recruiters across Australia, New Zealand, Dubai as well as the west coast of the US and wants to expand into other countries as demand builds.