jordanfurlong + innovation   1517

Like It Or Not, Law May Open Its Doors To Nonlawyers - Law360
The deregulation of the legal services market in the U.K. neither caused a revolution, nor a rash of ethical issues, Tromans said in his written comment.

"It simply didn't change things half as much as many expected," he said. "There is more diversity of ownership and some new business models, but that in itself has not meant more innovation."

Still, experts like Furlong say there are major differences between the U.K. and U.S. legal markets, and in the ways U.S. regulators have approached reform that they believe will spur more change in the access to justice arena than the industry has seen across the Atlantic.

States such as California have a long entrepreneurial tradition, and much of the reform in the U.S. is being overseen by access to justice task forces and commissions that are pushing for change with everyday consumers in mind, he said.

"I think events could unfold very differently," Furlong said.
jf  regulation  governance  innovation 
19 days ago by JordanFurlong
The Higher Use of Lawyers in a Data- and Tech-Enabled World | Corporate Counsel
The Higher Use of Lawyers—Practice at the Top of the Law License
Higher-Valued Attributes
Let’s assume that the higher use of lawyers is likely connected to that which makes lawyers valuable and unique, namely, their ability to:

Apply experience, expert judgment and savvy (plus data) to:
Solve or advise on legal problems, especially unseen-by-others problems,
Translate legal concerns into understandable/actionable business practices,
Prevent problems from arising with preventive and compliant strategies,
Assess, minimize or advise on the necessary re-balancing of risk,
Fill service gaps by creating or delivering solutions other workers or teams are not equipped to develop on their own,
Provide considered and trusted guidance to help clients navigate unknown or stormy, dangerous waters,
Advise on the better course (offering a perspective that protects the organization, its stakeholders, and the brand by supporting ethical, longer-term, and sustainable decisions).
Spot trends or connect disparate dots to help clients get out in front of others, or see around the corner to anticipate what’s coming; and
Identify, translate, and articulate legal concerns that can be connected to business strategy and practices, by communicating in a manner that facilitates clarity, and promotes clear, concise, and actionable directions.
innovation  value  it  data 
19 days ago by JordanFurlong
What Is a Next-Gen Law Firm? - Attorney at Work
A basic understanding of economics makes it clear that the supply and demand curve has turned against an entire generation of lawyers. While it’s premature to predict the death of the profession as we know it, it’s definitely time to focus on a law firm business model that’s more sophisticated than raising rates on an annual basis or adding headcount to grow revenue. The former assumes existing clients are relatively price-insensitive (a pretty big assumption), and the latter means hiring associates and keeping a piece of the revenue they generate. Limiting options — and certainly not creative.

“Next-gen” law firms pursue a third option — one that takes advantage of technology advancements and as-needed contract help, while focusing on work-life balance to mitigate the stress and burnout that has defined the generations before them.
models  innovation 
19 days ago by JordanFurlong
Canadian Law Societies should pay attention to Stephen Mayson’s work – Darrel Pink
Prof. Mayson’s review will interrogate the very issues that Canadian law societies should be thinking about –what role do regulatory objectives play in prescribing the work and approaches of legal regulators? Is regulation proportionate? Should risk (of harm) be used as a major factor in determining the scope of regulation? Do we need to regulate all legal services? How effective has the regulation of law firms/legal entities (including ABSs) been? Have the regulators really separated from the representative bodies (or in Canada, do the regulators continue to carry out representative/lawyer centric activities?)
Overarching is the need to clarify the meaning of ‘public interest’ especially in light of the current requirement in England to protect the ‘consumer interest’ and the emerging research on behavioural ethics and behavioural law and economics. The crucial question, beyond the definition, is when is regulatory intervention required in the public interest?
Canadian law societies have opened the door slightly on some of these issues through several projects. The Transforming Legal Regulation work in Nova Scotia has gone the farthest. The work of the Prairie law societies has focused on some of these issues. British Columbia’s law firm regulation and Ontario’s advancement on issues affecting racialized and indigenous lawyers have also prioritized some aspects of the work that Prof. Mayson’s Review will address. But there is nothing that is close to comprehensive.
regulation  governance  innovation 
19 days ago by JordanFurlong
California’s Ethics Rules | Setting The Stage For Legal Technology
While there could be pushback from some lawyers who resist change, if any state is going to be the first to implement this type of change -- California is where it will happen. However, other states like Arizona and Utah are already investigating similar issues. To gain approval as well as set new industry standards, the task force will need to illustrate that these proposals will help consumers have better access to justice while still preserving the lawyer’s sacred role and professional judgment in the industry. If you found this blog informative, you may enjoy reading More Changes Pending For California’s Data Protection Laws or The Epiq Angle Blog.
it  regulation  innovation 
19 days ago by JordanFurlong
Re-thinking legal services regulation | StephenMayson
The hypothesis of the alternative approach to regulation explored in the interim report is that, in the future, authorisation to practise and the application of regulatory requirements would not be imposed only on those who hold one or other of the existing professional titles.

Instead, all providers of legal services should be capable of entering the regulated domain for at least after-the-event regulation.  Beyond this entry level, a risk-based approach could determine whether additional during- and before-the-event requirements should be applied.

Accordingly, the working assumption of the interim report is that all legal services (to be re-defined) would be regarded as low risk unless they are separately defined and identified as either ‘intermediate risk’ or ‘high risk’ services requiring more targeted regulation.

As a consequence, entry into regulation would be set with broader scope.  In relation to low-risk legal services, after-the-event redress would become available (principally through a reformed Legal Ombudsman).  This level would set the minimum conditions of regulatory intervention to which all regulated providers of legal services would be subject.
regulation  innovation 
19 days ago by JordanFurlong
Are We Closer to a Tipping Point on Regulatory Reform in Legal Services? | Legal Executive Institute
The Work Group’s recommendations are set out in a new report, published on August 27. A few days after the report was released, the Utah Supreme Court voted unanimously to approve its recommendations and begin implementation. The report identified two tracks for reform:

Track A: Changes to the rules of professional conduct — These changes would loosen various restrictions on advertising and marketing practices, such as online lawyer-matching services, pay-per-click ads, link-sharing, and blogs. More significantly, the recommendations call for easing restrictions on i) lawyers giving value to third-parties in return for those parties channeling work to the lawyer; and ii) the abilities of both lawyers and non-lawyers to participate in the ownership of legal service entities. This latter recommendation could possibly create the sort of entities now allowed in the U.K. and other jurisdictions as “alternative business structures.”
Track B: A new regulatory body — The recommendations call for the creation of a new regulatory body tasked with the regulation of legal services that will be more focused on outcomes and assessments of risks rather than bright-line rules around what practices are allowed. This is a “regulatory sandbox” approach that allows providers to experiment and pilot new solutions in return for protection from ethics enforcement actions. (For more on how regulatory sandboxes function, see a recent white paper that explains how a regulatory sandbox for legal startups would promote innovation.)
The truly revolutionary aspect of the Utah Work Group’s framework is its focus on empirical methods, the use of data in decision-making, and the evaluation of risks to consumers in a pragmatic, evidence-based approach.
regulation  innovation 
19 days ago by JordanFurlong
Legal Innovation Fever - Prism Legal
Activity vs. Adoption. Innovation talk exceeds adoption and results. Consider what well-known economist Erik Brynjolfsson said early in the tech revolution: “You can see the computer age everywhere but in the productivity statistics.” For all the innovation initiatives, query how much impact that has had on lawyer output per hour or improved outcomes.

Client Uptake. Clients have no clear way to gauge the value they get from firms (see innovation as proxy above). Moreover, most in-house counsel work with fewer resources than outside counsel. As cost centers, corporate law departments lack resources to improve processes or deploy leading edge legal tech. Most work with cruder tools than their outside counsel. Without good metrics and without relevant personal experience, they cannot easily judge law firm efforts. And even if they can, how often do they drop outside experts for inefficiency?

The Best Path to Innovation? An open question remains what drives the best result:  top down, central innovation efforts or bottoms-up, practice-driven ones. In my opinion, for innovation to have impact, it must originate from practices and have institutional support.
innovation  firms 
5 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
INSIGHT: Who’s Afraid of Flat Fees? Not the GC of Panasonic
And the data reveals that flat fees work. As the chart below illustrates, flat fees consistently outperform hourly rates on cost-effectiveness:


Cost Certainty Is as Important as Savings
And from my perspective, cost certainty is as important as cost savings. Not just for me, but also for our internal clients, who want a clean, flat number from us. They need the predictability that flat and other non-hourly billing can provide.

Flat fees also force lawyers to think hard about budgets, and how to deliver on commitments. Firms become responsible for their costs, learn to use resources efficiently, and apply project management techniques—a perfect environment to drive law firm innovation. (Incidentally, that’s something we like about AdvanceLaw’s approach, it’s a key principle to recommend firms that excel at innovation.)

Perhaps even more exciting, the data from the Thought Leaders Experiment shows there is no statistical difference in the quality of work or the service delivered by law firms whether working under a flat or hourly fee.

While that’s been my experience, it is not the conventional wisdom. Many of my peers and commentators in the legal press worry that setting a fixed total price means trading off quality. Law firms look to maximize profit under that flat fee, the thinking goes, and staff those matters with the B-team providing B-level service, so that better (read: more expensive) lawyers can turn their attention elsewhere.
pricing  clients  innovation 
5 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
UnitedLex's Deal With LeClairRyan Was a Failure. Is It Also a Sign of Things to Come? | The American Lawyer
Consultant Marcie Borgal Shunk of the Tilt Institute said that shouldn’t spook the industry. In fact, she said LeClairRyan’s experience should be a reminder of the opportunities that new arrangements can offer firms that aren’t at the height of the law firm market.

“They should be thinking about this sooner rather than later,” she said. “There’s a potential opportunity to pursue work and find work that would otherwise be outside the realm of possibility. It allows them to compete with the big guys.”

Several former partners at LeClairRyan said they did not believe the arrangement with ULX had any impact on the firm’s collapse. One noted that he’d brought in several new clients via UnitedLex that are moving with him to his new firm.

While the bankruptcy filing shows that LeClairRyan owes ULX Partners $8 million plus interest, on the face of it, that number says little. The firm estimated between $10 million and $50 million in remaining assets, and wherever the actual number falls within those parameters, it might have been significantly lower, had the firm been paying directly for these services over the past year.

“I don’t think that there’s evidence that the deal with UnitedLex was a driver in LeClairRyan’s demise, and in fact, I think it was a net positive in keeping their expenses down,” said Kent Zimmermann, a consultant with the Zeughauser Group.
outsourcing  process  innovation  failure 
5 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
After 40 Years of Constant Change, What's Next for the Legal Industry? | The American Lawyer
Technology and artificial intelligence on their own are noteworthy, but what’s more compelling is the impact they will have on how firms are structured.

Mitch Zuklie of Orrick. Cedit: Jason Doiy/ALM.
“Everything that can be taken out of the hands of subject-matter experts and handed over to the process experts and technologists will be,” says Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe Chairman and CEO Mitch Zuklie. “There will be far fewer associates sitting in rooms with documents and more strategic partnerships among law firms and legal tech providers.”
future  firms  clients  process  innovation  it  compliance 
5 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
National | CBA National - The Power of Perspectives
The elements of the above service are already available, and a range of players from international giants to startups like Australia's Legaler have begun to stitch their own marketplaces together. It is the retail side of legal services that will be the first push in this direction, as a great many people have routine questions about law that can be quickly answered by a competent person. People who are not being served by existing offerings. The savings will come from a combination of better utilization of extra capacity from existing lawyers, outsourcing, digital workflows, and scale.

Platforms are profitable only with significant scale, but once they have achieved that — serving hundreds of thousands or millions of customers worldwide — there are massive benefits for consumers. But it takes technology to enable that enable that scale.

Disruption of retail law

A quality-assured legal advice app would be a challenge to existing legal practices that are focused on the low end of the market. However, the arrival of this kind of service would cause lawyers to migrate to the platform in order to bring in new business and focus on the law instead of finding clients. Some lawyers might resist it; others will see the opportunity and consumers will begin to recognize the brand, creating a virtuous cycle of growth. Most lawyers in Canada don't have a brand and potential customers are often confused about whom to turn to. A legal video chat app would address this gap and provide a more convenient platform for lawyers to help people.
access  innovation  chatbot 
6 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
Reynen Court under the microscope: The beta launch and road map | Legal IT Insider
The challenge with Reynen Court is to describe what they are about without using the term ‘App store’ as a metaphor. So, I shall say this, Reynen Court was founded in September 2018 by ex-Cravath, Swaine & Moore associate Andrew Klein with the aim of providing law firms with a simplified mechanism for selecting and implementing software designed for them with a minimum of expenditure of time and effort.

The simplification operates on two levels:

o technical
o procurement / due diligence.

On the technical level the system works by ‘containerising’ (I tried not to use that term either, but it is too difficult) the software such that it is established in an infrastructure-independent form and can be readily spun-up for use by a law firm in its own technical environment. Such environment could be on premise (in virtualised data centres) or in private or public clouds hosted by AWS, Azure, Google or others.

As Klein said at the time: “The important point is that by running containerised applications, firms get all of the benefits of modern cloud computing without having to trust content to third party SaaS platforms.”
cloud  it  innovation  firms  platform 
7 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
LeClairRyan: Mistiming The End Of The Legal Monopoly | Above the Law
LeClair concocted an accounting and stock structure within the firm that allowed for the purchase of a preferred class of firm stock that paid an 8 percent return contingent on the firm making budget. In the short term, firm partners theoretically could invest, build up the firm’s capital reservoir, and have a comfortable long-term return on their investment. In the long term, once the rules governing firm investment loosened up, LeClairRyan would be instantly positioned to either accept massive waves of outside funds and grow itself into a superpower, or sell the firm and allow preferred shareholders to cash in. Sounds like a great plan, right?
collapse  firm  partners  innovation 
8 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
How LeClairRyan’s Grand Plans Unraveled | The American Lawyer
ven before leadership changed hands in 2016, some pointed to decisions such as overpaying underperforming lawyers and creating too much overhead that led to the lackluster financial metrics.

The firm failed to meet its budget in for the first time in 2011, according to an arbitration award filed in litigation between former partner Michele Craddock and LeClairRyan over claims of gender bias.

The firm missed budget again in 2012, 2013 and 2014, the court filing said.

According to the filing, LeClairRyan had pointed to its own financial problems—such as problematic compensation packages for its lawyers—to defend against Craddock’s claims that she was paid unfairly.

“The firm’s leadership acknowledged that the ‘raise culture’ of ‘paying more in compensation than [it] should be paying … resulted in (the firm’s financial) shortfalls,’” the arbitration award said.

According to the Craddock decision, the firm used subjective and objective criteria to determine compensation, including hours worked, origination, matter management and team leadership. The firm described its compensation system as a “‘relatocracy,’” the filing said, referring to the connection between each lawyer’s contribution to firm values and execution of its strategy, which “is not determined by the rigid application of a formula.’”

The compensation system wasn’t a big hit. Some sources told ALM that the system, described as complicated and murky, paid certain partners more than they were worth—inconsistent with the firm’s competitive price points for clients.
collapse  firm  partners  innovation 
8 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
At #ILTACON19, Law Firm Tech Spin-Off Debuts App Designed to Better Serve and Inform Clients | LawSites
Being announced today at ILTACON is a client-facing app and cloud platform designed to provide law firm clients with intuitive access to legal documents, automated legal forms and agreements, secure messaging, and digital billing and payment.

Called ConnectIVITY, the app is being developed by Connective Counsel, a startup technology company that spun off in 2018 after beginning as an internal project at the midsized Cleveland, Ohio, firm Kohrman Jackson & Krantz (KJK).

The app is currently in a beta-testing release and will officially launch early in 2020. The company is accepting law firms to participate in the beta, during which the cost of the app is $100 per client per year. Several mid-sized firms are already participating, including KJK.

Attendees at ILTACON will be able to see the app demonstrated in booth 3 of the exhibit hall’s Startup Hub.

The company says that the app is designed to complement, not replace,  a firm’s document management system. It already integrates with the DMS Worldox, allowing lawyers and staff to select documents within Worldox and upload them to ConnectIVITY for client access.
innovation  apps 
8 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
Organizing for Innovation, #ILTACon19 Live - Prism Legal
F&R. No formal innovation program. Initial IT department at Fish was too complicated. Two years ago, long-standinutg CIO retired. Beau proposed separating infrastructure from “Legal Technology Solutions”. Made a conscious decision not to use the word innovation because everyone at the firm innovates. This group has 25 people; it includes about one-dozen developers, who build a lot of custome applications, and regularly interact with client. The client interaction is new in last year or two and is very successful. Will re-org again to align more with practices and client services.
innovation  firms 
8 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
LeClairRyan’s Early Plans for Outside Investment Came Too Soon
According to several former attorneys at the firm who spoke to Bloomberg Law but requested anonymity to preserve relationships at LeClairRyan, the firm made attempts under its old leadership to break the traditional firm mold. But it appears to have made these moves prematurely, anticipating innovations, like the regulatory acceptance of nonlawyer investment in firms, that have still not come to fruition.
firms  innovation  collapse 
9 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
How Law Schools' Online Classes Are Supporting Rise of ‘Virtual Law’ | Legaltech News
“Gaining an education and knowing how to self-educate through virtual technology is leverage for telling an employer that you’ll be successful working from home and so many more jobs are virtual,” Coseglia said.

Many of the competitive advantages that students may be receiving are ancillary to any legal knowledge or even tech-related skills that may be built into the curriculum. Yaacov Silberman, a founding partner and the chief operating officer at Rimon PC, doesn’t think that success as a remote employee is even about technical prowess.

“I think there is sort of a cultural, behavioral, interpersonal quality you have to have if you’re working at home,” Silberman said.
virtual  schools  innovation 
9 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
Innovation Case Study 3: Perkins Coie | Rainmaking Oasis, LLC
to offer support, ideas and access to tools and methodologies.

 

TRUE PARTNERING WITH CLIENTS
 

Toby regularly meets with the firm’s top clients to understand their legal and operational needs and challenges, negotiate creative, value-based pricing and monitor their satisfaction with the firm’s services.  These meetings often result in intel about what other firms are doing and watershed moments about what clients need.

Representative collaborations where the firm has had measurable successes with specific clients include:

Reporting (quarterly business reports, KPIs, predictive analytics, dashboards)
Technology solutions PC Matter Management tool, Portfolio Dashboard, Patent Prosecution Portfolio Management/P4
Project management and process mapping
Electronic billing
Knowledge management (Emerging Companies & Venture Capital Forms System)
Value-Based Pricing Models
Continuing Legal Education
Custom Training for Executives and Business Staff
Diversity (Joint 1L diversity fellowship)
Pro bono
 

Stories about how effective Perkins Coie has been in their client partnering initiatives include successful case studies of key clients:

Software Company – Two flat fees for separate portfolios of legal services, dashboards that reflect budgets and staffing in real time, quarterly business review calls on high level issues and business strategy, working together on pro bono activities, shared lawyer training, diversity internships.

Technology Company – A fixed fee for all of the work for a specified business unit. This involves a unique process and tool for on-boarding new projects, reviewed and adjusted annually.

A Retail Company – A fixed annual portfolio fee for all contract review. New matters are initiated by the client in a custom portal allowing faster turn-around times on documents, and better data analytics on contracts volumes, cycle times and contract types.
innovation 
9 weeks ago by JordanFurlong
'Crazy Ideas' Welcome: Inside Orrick's Plan to Build an Innovation Culture | Legaltech News
Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe has worked to make innovation a fundamental part of its brand in recent years.

It can point to successes along the way: In December, The American Lawyer honored Orrick as an innovation leader at its first industry awards, citing the firm’s legal technology venture Orrick Labs. But in embracing innovation, the firm has been forced to confront the risk-aversion that’s fundamental to the practice of law.
“People are so conservative about what can be done,” said Orrick chief talent officer Siobhan Handley. Advances and breakthroughs tend to require enduring failures and embracing uncertainty—pretty much the opposite of what lawyers strive for.

“We’re rules-following individuals,” Handley said.
One strategy for trying to change the mindset of attorneys across the firm has been a program, launched last June, that allows associates 50 hours of creditable time a year towards innovation projects. Orrick isn’t alone in the idea: Reed Smith piloted a similar project in 2017 for a limited number of associates and removed a cap on the number of projects that would be approved in 2018.

While the Orrick associates interested in participating also have to put together a proposal, chief innovation officer Wendy Curtis emphasized that the bar is not high.
innovation  firms  culture 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
BCLP Reboots Service Delivery Arm Following Lawyers on Demand Sale | Legaltech News
Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP) has reorganized its multi-pronged service delivery business, with a new entity to launch this year.

The new service, called BCLP Cubed, will integrate three arms of the firm’s delivery systems – complex legal advice, volume legal services, and legal operations support – into one.
It will be led by partner Neville Eisenberg as CEO, while chief innovation officer Katie DeBord will head the service’s product development team.

The new platform will bring together the firm’s volume delivery teams in Manchester and St. Louis, and initially be made up of 150 staff, according to Eisenberg.
He told Law.com’s Legal Week: “We plan on scaling that up and adding to that team as demand for these services grows.”

He added that the project had been under development for the last nine months and is due to formally launch in September.

Formerly a commercial litigation partner at legacy Bryan Cave, DeBord said the firms discussed how to combine their respective volume delivery teams when they merged last year.

Speaking to The American Lawyer, she said: “We found that we had all the makings for a full platform that could deliver streams of work through the life cycle of the matter.

“Clients are in a situation now where they are delegating certain work to alternative providers, and other types of work to technical providers. We said ‘Why can’t we bring that all together for clients?’”

With the implementation of BCLP Cubed, the firm aims to standardize and scale up its delivery systems in a bid to cut costs for their clients while still providing efficient high-quality services.

Eisenberg was managing partner of legacy firm Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) when the firm launched its alternative delivery service Lawyers on Demand (LOD) in 2007.
innovation  subsidiaries  managedlegal  flex  firms 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
Eversheds Sutherland Launches Its Own ALSP With $127M Revenue Target | Legaltech News
Eversheds Sutherland is creating its own global alternative legal service provider, joining a trend among large firms with an international presence.

The firm announced Wednesday that it plans to launch a new entity to house its advisory, interim resourcing and managed service offerings, called Konexo, using existing teams in Europe and Asia. ES Agile, the firm’s flexible lawyering entity, has also been folded into the new business.
According to Eversheds Sutherland, the advisory, interim resourcing and managed service segment already accounts for £40 million, or about $50.77 million, of annual revenue. It encompasses three teams, known as ES Consulting, Corporate Secretarial and Volume Insolvency, which together saw business grow by 38% last year, according to the firm.

The goal is to continue growing that number, the firm said, to at least £100 million, or nearly $127 million, in annual revenue. Eversheds Sutherland’s global revenue for 2018, reported in February, was $1.175 billion (£900m).
“This is in response to what we’re seeing as a clear client demand,” Eversheds Sutherland co-CEO Lee Ranson said in an interview Wednesday. There was “a constant theme” in conversations with clients around using technology and moving away from the traditional legal model for “repeatable-type” legal work, he said.
newlaw  subsidiaries  managedlegal  firms  innovation 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
Law firms are investing in innovation through venture capital services
Home Daily News Law firms are investing in innovation through…
PRACTICE TECHNOLOGY
Law firms are investing in innovation through venture capital services
BY ARI KAPLAN

JUNE 21, 2019, 6:30 AM CDT

   Share    


Ari Kaplan.

Ari Kaplan spoke with Alex Nwaka, a principal with Touchdown Ventures, which provides venture capital services on behalf of leading corporations.

Ari Kaplan: Tell us about your background and your role at Touchdown Ventures.

Alex Nwaka: I started my career as an investment banker at Morgan Stanley and UBS in New York City covering the energy industry, went to Columbia Business School and then spent some time at Virgin Management, Richard Branson’s family office, performing a combination of venture capital, private equity and corporate development work. After Virgin, I worked as a private equity consultant at Estee Lauder Cos. on their new business development team, helping to reorganize their M&A strategy. I joined Touchdown four and a half years ago as the first full-time hire. In the last year and a half to two years, I have focused on enterprise software and the future of professional services. Legal tech is among the categories on which I spend my time.

Ari Kaplan: How does the company’s model of providing venture capital as a service work?

Alex Nwaka: We believe in strong collaboration with our corporate partners, where each party brings a valuable perspective. Touchdown brings the venture capital expertise, which includes sourcing, diligence, deal execution, deal management, including board representation and commercial relationships, through an exit. We also handle some of the reporting and monitoring of the portfolio as well. Our corporate partners bring deep industry expertise from their vertical or the category in which they operate. Together, we make a complete team combining the VC and operating knowledge.

Ari Kaplan: What are the advantages?

Alex Nwaka: We collectively can bring significant strategic value to our portfolio companies either as customers, channel partners or as a general sounding board for go-to-market strategy and even product development in the broadest sense. We are more than just a check to the founders and entrepreneurs that we invest in. We really try to bring strategic value.

Ari Kaplan: What types of organizations are investing in legal tech?

Alex Nwaka: We are finding most often that law firms are one of the key constituencies investing in legal tech. Corporate legal departments and GCs within Fortune 500 corporations are also investing in legal tech. And, to a much lesser extent, institutional venture funds are playing around in the ecosystem as well.
innovation  firms  clementi 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
Are Incubators Only For Big Law? Austrian Firms Show Collaboration Is The Answer – Artificial Lawyer
By pooling resources between seven firms, and then bringing in the support of local universities and other bodies, the law firms (see below), which include major local brands such as Dorda, Schönherr and Wolf Theiss, have been able to put together what they may not have been able to do on their own.

For example, although Dorda is a well-known and leading firm in Austria and the region, it has less than 100 lawyers in total – and devoting fee earner time to creating and running an incubator would be a strain. But, if you combine a firm of this size with the firms below, then they have the resources of a far larger business.

Although the LTHV doesn’t appear to have gone down that road yet, another opportunity here could be to pool anonymised contract data to help NLP/ML start-ups – something that Singapore is planning to do.

Overall, this collaborative approach could be a model for law firms in other parts of the world that also want to explore working directly with start-ups and scale-up legal tech companies, but that feel limited in terms of resources. 
innovation  firms  incubator  r&d  collaboration 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
More Than Law: Is The Traditional Big Law Model Over? – Artificial Lawyer
But, what if a leading commercial ‘law firm’ now had to do more than law to prosper and keep clients happy? 

And, it’s worth saying that just because we now have ALSPs, LPOs, law companies and the Big Four in the market, it does not automatically mean the traditional model that has existed for centuries is over. They can all co-exist in parallel. One species’ evolution does not mean every other species has to evolve as well to survive. Nature doesn’t work like that.

Also, just because a number of law firms in the UK have become Alternative Business Structures (ABS) under the Legal Services Act and started to make a handful of other professionals into equity partners, also does not mean the trad model is over. A CFO and some accountants made into partners, or even a public listing, does not make the overall business model of a firm that different in terms of what it sells.

It’s also worth saying that the majority of the ‘true’ ABSs in the UK that are genuinely offering a wide combination of law and other professional services, such as property surveying and accounting, are very small firms. In fact, the majority of the now 100s of ABSs in the UK are very, very small, no matter what they offer. [Note: England & Wales has around 10,000 registered ‘law firms’, most under £10m in revenue.] We are talking about the largest commercial legal brands here, i.e. what is called ‘Big Law’ in the US.

The trad model is only really over when the leading firms, in growing numbers, invest significantly in offering more than law.

Also this is not about ownership structures, but rather what is made by that business and sold to the clients.
innovation  firms  business  models 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
Forum Magazine: A Safe Space for Innovation — Law Firms Creating “Captive ALSPs” | Legal Executive Institute
oday’s market for alternative legal service providers (ALSPs) has become larger, quickly growing and more broadly adopted by clients looking for more nimble or lower cost options to law firms alone.

In response to clients’ needs, ALSPs are leveraging different business models, emerging in all shapes and sizes from the Big Four accounting firms to small, tech-savvy disruptors, according to a new report on the sector from Thomson Reuters Legal Executive Institute, in partnership with Georgetown University Law School’s Center on Ethics and the Legal Profession, the University of Oxford Saïd Business School, and legal research firm Acritas.

One of these new formations — captive ALSPs — has seen law firms seek to regain their competitive edge in the market by essentially creating in-house ALSPs that can allow the firm to pitch a wider range of services to clients and offer oversight of the work while keeping costs low. Indeed, this was the first year the report measured the impact of captive ALSPs, and it found that the new model was making “headway among law firms of all sizes in both the US and the UK.” Further, when captives are included in ALSP market totals, “the scope of the alternative legal services model and market expands significantly,” the report notes.

Lisa Hart Shepherd, CEO of Acritas, said captive ALSPs were included in the report totals this year because they’ve grown very quickly and are becoming quite commonplace within the market. “Among the large law firms, if they don’t already have an in-house ALSP, then they are looking at having one,” Hart Shepherd says. As part of the report, Acritas conducted telephone interviews with representatives of 35 ALSPs located in the US, UK, and other countries. While law firms were not willing to release the revenue or growth figures for their captive units, some noted that the units had staff that numbered in the hundreds of employees.
newlaw  subsidiaries  r&d  innovation  firms 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
Innovation Case Study 1: Levenfeld Pearlstein | Rainmaking Oasis, LLC
Levenfeld Pearlstein is a 75-lawyer firm in Chicago. Its innovative CEO, Angie Hickey, recently shared her insights at the P3 Conference about how the firm has adopted a corporate style Customer Experience culture that sets it apart.  Their client focus permeates everything the firm does both internally and externally.

The firm was founded in 1999 in large part to create a different kind of law firm, one that was focused on developing loyal client relationships and producing exceptional client value. There are a number of aspects to the firm’s culture that are distinctive and innovative, and they are embodied in their model “The LP Way™.”  Unlike some firms that tout slogans or promote innovative aspects of their client value initiatives without the backing of measurements and frameworks, The LP Way™ actually is a business strategy.  It is used as the basis for how the firm attracts, develops and rewards talent and how it ensures consistency, transparency and satisfaction to clients.

Many years ago, firms began developing client service standards, protocols and strategies.  An example of a firm that was way out in front on this was Miles & Stockbridge who at the direction of their former visionary CEO and Chairman John Frisch, developed a set of client-focused values, a service pledge, a robust client feedback program and policies, programs and training to indoctrinate all lawyers and staff in exceptional client service practices. While some other firms carried through on their promises, many inadequately delivered on the client service pledges they published on their web sites.

 
innovation  client  service 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
Scoring your innovation (098) | Legal Evolution
The worksheet provides two types of insights. First, low scores on a Section I factor or in one of the other Sections help prioritize your efforts (or the decision to pull the plug). Second, you can use it as a point of comparison. For example, score the most successful innovation in your space. As students in my “How Innovation Diffuses in the Legal Industry” courses quickly realize, we are operating with many faulty assumptions. We find this out when we test them.

For those using the worksheet (click on thumbnail to the right), I’d welcome feedback. Please send to editor@legalevoltion.org.

I’m creating another worksheet for Organizational Innovativeness (Posts 015, 016, 017), but this is enough for now.
innovation  metrics 
july 2019 by JordanFurlong
'This Is Not Greenberg Traurig': Firm Leader Touts New Innovation Venture | The American Lawyer
Greenberg Traurig chair Richard Rosenbaum recognizes that the traditional full-service law firm can’t do everything.

For clients’ primary needs—excellence in core legal areas—they’re not looking anywhere else. But when it comes to so-called “commoditized” work, they have an increasing set of options, and law firms will invariably struggle to keep up with the technology needed to compete.
His firm announced this week it was founding a subsidiary, Recurve, that will partner with artificial intelligence providers, staffing firms, real estate innovators and other startups to guide clients as well as other law firms in taking advantage of the growing range of services available. The idea is to be “innovation architects,” who identify client needs and guide them toward solutions, but won’t execute them or engage in the practice of law.

The initiative will be run out of Warsaw, Poland; Tel Aviv, Israel; and Denver, and will also include operations in strategically selected locations like Austin, Texas; Berlin; and South Florida. The 2,000-attorney firm has existing offices in all of these locations.
Rosenbaum spoke Wednesday with The American Lawyer about his vision for Recurve and what is novel about the offering.

In your own words, what is Recurve?

Over time we obviously have seen the evolution of both technology and other forms of staffing, artificial intelligence and other value-enhancing ways of addressing so-called repetitive and commoditized aspects of legal work. Because of that, there has arisen a lot of capital spending and business units within law firms, with limited success for the most part. It’s very hard to keep up with the cutting edge.
innovation  r&d  offshore  process 
june 2019 by JordanFurlong
The UK's Top Legal Tech Incubators: A Firm-By-Firm Guide | Legaltech News
This year alone has seen Slaughter and May, Clifford Chance and Ashurst all launch new initiatives. Even Barclays and PwC have taken interest with their own legal-tech focused programs.
The benefit for law firms is that they get in at the ground level with high-growth (and potentially high fee-generating) clients, or they can boost their own practices by bringing their technology in-house.

But you would be forgiven for losing track of which firm has done what. Here, Legal Week rounds up the main incubator-style programs run by U.K. Top 50 firms.
r&d  innovation 
june 2019 by JordanFurlong
Greenberg Traurig Announces the Founding of "Recurve": A First-of-its-Kind Global Shared Services Platform Transforming the Delivery of Tech, Staffing, Space, and Other Support Services for the Legal Industry | News | Greenberg Traurig LLP
Recurve's core focus areas are intended to include innovations in technology solutions, artificial intelligence, project management, alternative staffing, novel space innovations and other developing aides for lawyers and clients which do not involve the actual practice of law. 

“Recurve will work outside the traditional legal model to provide previously unavailable tools and efficiencies in the legal ecosystem, bringing together diverse talents and resources across the globe in a collaborative platform aimed at industry-wide innovation to help attorneys and clients adapt to the rapidly changing legal landscape,” said Richard A. Rosenbaum, Executive Chairman of Greenberg Traurig. “We are pleased to establish this unique and nimble business, initially as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Greenberg Traurig. Utilizing investments by strategic partners involved in its core disciplines and other equity investors experienced in the space to fund its capital requirements and operational needs, Recurve is intended to become the first law-firm founded, third-party financed global collaboration platform solely focused on creative innovation in the support of the delivery of legal services.”

Recurve will be staffed by a lean and experienced team of innovation "architects", well versed in client needs, the advantages of the traditional law firm model and the wide array of growing resources in the legal innovation marketplace. This team will serve as the point of contact for Recurve's clients to identify their needs and design appropriate solutions; but it will not itself execute them or otherwise engage in legal practice. 
innovation  offshoring  r&d 
june 2019 by JordanFurlong
Immigration Lawyer Explains How She Launched an (Almost) Fully Automated Firm | Legaltech News
After all, people—especially people juggling heavy caseloads—can make mistakes. So why not bring in a few robots? About 95 percent of the immigration practice at Irvine, California-based 2nd.law, the firm that Ansari co-founded with product designer Alex Pelevin, has been fully automated.

This means that she gets to focus on the practice of law while administrative items like billing are handled with an AI assist. Ansari’s own journey towards automation started gradually with functions such as employee task-setting and evolved into more client-centric uses like signing documents, setting appointments or document collection. Once Ansari has completed a review, an automated process is kicked into gear that schedules a meeting with the client to discuss the case via the video-chat platform Zoom.
Ansari spoke with Legaltech News about the challenges of adapting to an automated environment and the savings that she’s been able to pass along to clients. Answers have been edited for clarity and length.

Legaltech News: What drew you to technology—specifically AI—as a potential solution to try and address some of these problems?

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Bahar Ansari: I started out as a solo immigration attorney with my very own small law firm. I started scaling fast, and the law firm was scaling just from referrals from other clients only. And as it grew more and more I took on an assistant, but it really wasn’t scalable past a certain point and I couldn’t take on more clients and help them the way I wanted to with personal attention. And I had two choices: One was use some sort of technology to automate some of my work, two was hire more people.
innovation  virtual  robo 
june 2019 by JordanFurlong
Forum Magazine: Is the Law Firm of the Future in Abu Dhabi? | Legal Executive Institute
While Support Legal wasn’t the first law firm to provide such a service, it was the first of its kind in the Middle East serving the region’s burgeoning start-up environment. The UAE government and business community had launched a concerted effort to grow technology hubs, funded by venture capital firms and supported by a legal system largely based on English common law.
innovation 
june 2019 by JordanFurlong
The UK's Top Legal Tech Incubators: A Firm-By-Firm Guide | Legaltech News
It’s no secret that law firms are pushing to build their tech-friendly credentials, most notably through ‘incubator’ programs, which offer a variety of perks to start-ups to help them grow their company.

This year alone has seen Slaughter and May, Clifford Chance and Ashurst all launch new initiatives. Even Barclays and PwC have taken interest with their own legal-tech focused programs.
The benefit for law firms is that they get in at the ground level with high-growth (and potentially high fee-generating) clients, or they can boost their own practices by bringing their technology in-house.

But you would be forgiven for losing track of which firm has done what. Here, Legal Week rounds up the main incubator-style programs run by U.K. Top 50 firms.

Allen & Overy

Fuse, Allen & Overy, London
A&O’s Fuse is an in-residence innovation program run from the firm’s London headquarters.

Participating companies receive day-to-day access to the firm’s lawyers and clients in order to develop their products. A&O looks to work with companies at various stages of development, who focus on legal or regulatory technology.
incubator  startup  innovation  it 
june 2019 by JordanFurlong
New Business World, New Legal Models | McCarthy Tétrault
The onward march to greater globalization — accelerated by, among other things, the Internet and e-commerce — means nearly every company now has international play or potential. They must now contend with increasingly stringent regulations, across multiple domains and nations, only adding to the complexity of their journey. According to Compliance & Risks, there were about 2,000 regulations globally in 2003 which has ballooned to 16,000 in 2018[1]. Compliance with the specific rules and filings of each country, keeping up with new and revised regulations and shifts in regulatory interpretation is costly and difficult to manage. 
innovation  compliance 
may 2019 by JordanFurlong
CC pilots dropping billable hours from performance reviews
Managing partner Matthew Layton (pictured) added: ‘With this pilot, we are trying to break the dominance of that single metric and allow our teams to think more broadly about where their time is best spent. This may mean investing in time spent developing and applying process improvements to matters, rather than straightforward matter delivery.’

The pilot will not, however, mean that CC’s Middle East lawyers will no longer be recording their time: they will have desktop dashboards showing how much of their time has been spent on different sets of activities, including financial information about the matters they are working on. The firm said this was done in order to ensure the evaluation of the pilot was based on comparable data.

Firstbrook concluded: ‘By running a pilot on this scale, with a large number of data points, associate input and partner and management feedback, we expect to be in a position to draw informed conclusions on the way ahead for the firm.’
metrics  productivity  compensation  innovation 
may 2019 by JordanFurlong
How and Why a Cynic of “DIY” Law Built a DIY Divorce Platform
With that information in hand, I next had to map out the user experience, which may seem elementary to developers and UX people but it was all new to me. I had to think about every aspect of what happens in the divorce process — not just the forms and procedural steps but the whole process from start to finish. When someone says they want a divorce, it requires not only thinking about living situations, custody of children, and finances but also managing the fear, anger, pain, and sadness that go along with those big life changes. It was crucial to account for the emotional aspects of the process in the user experience.
newlaw  family  access  innovation  startup 
may 2019 by JordanFurlong
Eversheds Sutherland Announces Innovation Partnership with Fastcase on Artificial Intelligence (AI) Sandbox - Eversheds Sutherland
Eversheds Sutherland is pleased to announce a partnership with Fastcase, the leading next generation legal research service in the US, on a first-of-its-kind Artificial Intelligence (AI) Sandbox. Founded on the precept that data and intelligence can drive better solutions for clients, the Eversheds Sutherland AI Sandbox provides a platform for the global practice to innovate proprietary products for clients. 

To formally launch the partnership, Fastcase CEO Ed Walters provided an exclusive seminar and training in Eversheds Sutherland’s Atlanta office on April 18. Eversheds Sutherland is the first legal practice to receive the training, which was attended by Eversheds Sutherland Co-CEO Mark D. Wasserman along with other attorneys and members of the innovation, legal technology, research services and financial teams. 
robo  publishers  innovation  r&d 
may 2019 by JordanFurlong
Chicago-Kent Legal Tech Program Races Against Fast Evolving Legal Careers | Legaltech News
Last year, Chicago-Kent approved a Masters of Law degree in legal innovation and technology, but it won’t officially launch until students arrive in the fall of 2019. Under that very big umbrella fits knowledge in legal analytics, machine learning and technology-aided access to justice, all of which will be dolloped out to students over the course of one year.

Krent said the program was developed to address increased demand within the economy for tech-savvy employees that can step into knowledge management roles, assist with predictive analytics or provide some added value to an organization’s use of AI.

“There was a good dialogue, not just with law firms but with providers of legal tech, about what skills they want in the next generation of employees. That’s going to change so we have to keep abreast of that. It’s a constantly evolving market,” Krent explained.

Right now much of the demand in the market revolves around privacy, security and e-discovery. Jared Coseglia, founder and CEO of TRU Staffing Partners, said the volume of hiring inside those three disciplines still outstrips that of innovation-based roles.

But there will be a demand for more innovation roles inside the legal sphere—eventually.

“Right now there’s a lot of talk and conjecture, but it hasn’t trickled down and dynamically effected the job market in the sense that legal innovation is still an executive level conversation with most law firms and not an operational agenda just yet,” Coseglia said.

A majority of the innovation-themed job openings that Coseglia comes across today originate from inside corporate law departments. This isn’t necessarily much help to graduating students since most of those companies prefer to fill those roles from within, but the ripple effect can still pose some benefits.
schools  innovation  training 
april 2019 by JordanFurlong
Allen & Overy Picks Four Newest Companies to Join Fuse Incubator | Legaltech News
Four legal tech companies have fought off competition to join Allen & Overy’s vaunted Fuse incubator program.
Apiax, Define, HighQ and Scissero will move into A&O’s flagship tech space in early May this year, after beating 100 applicants for this year’s round.

The companies will join Fuse veterans Avvoka, Legatics, and Nivaura, which have been in the program since it launched in September 2017. They also join fintech company Regnosys, which was selected for the second round of the program last April.
Companies to leave the program this year include Kira, which raised $50 million in its first external funding round while on the program, and Bloomsbury AI, which was purchased by Facebook in July.
incubator  it  firms  innovation 
march 2019 by JordanFurlong
How Slaughter and May Is Making Use of Legal AI Across The Firm – Artificial Lawyer
Woods and Stewart also talked about how the firm is making the use of tools such as Luminance a key part of the training they now expect their trainees to be involved in.

For example, all of S+M’s trainees (i.e. junior lawyers before formal qualification as solicitors) now use Luminance and train with it.


Alex Woods, Head of KM
‘We have embedded AI into our legal training. Trainees have to teach Luminance clauses as part of their training. This is not seen as separate from the practice of law,’ they explained.

This clearly shows just how seriously S+M is taking this. However, this is not completely without challenges, Woods and Stewart also highlighted the need for proper governance around classification of data and legal terms that may have been taught into the AI system.
data  robo  innovation  analytics  training 
march 2019 by JordanFurlong
WSGR Lite? The Birth Of A New Tech-Led Business Model? – Artificial Lawyer
esterday, legal services business Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati (WSGR) announced it was creating a new legal tech unit, SixFifty. Interesting in itself, but is this potentially a signal of a new business model developing across the legal market? Artificial Lawyer investigates.



The developer unit’s first product is SixFifty Privacy, a tool that businesses can use to assess and plan their compliance with California’s Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) – which is a local version of the EU’s GDPR.

This is basically an automated Q&A interface that guides a business through checklists and queries to find out what it needs to do in relation to CCPA. After that, the potential client can decide it has met its obligations, or decide it needs more help.
subsidiaries  innovation  IT 
march 2019 by JordanFurlong
Divergent Perspectives on Law Firm Innovation | Legaltech News
Such a culture is often not the norm in law firms, however. Innovation is change; an event that most times is initiated by the whip rather than the carrot. To be direct, the legal market, despite the pressures it has suffered as of late, is and has been for many years a protected market. There may be a wolf trotting toward the doorstep, but it is relatively toothless – at least at the moment. A quick look at the P3 numbers of the Am Law 200 and the perpetually rising bill rates finds a very profitable industry, which, in and of itself can create significant inertia. Along with driving the process of innovation, the pressures of the market – “natural selection” – will break that inertia and invoke cultural change. But that is a slow process. The liberalization of the US legal market would greatly speed it up, but we shouldn’t hold our collective breath.

So, where do we start to make a cultural shift? This brings us to my second lesson: while cash will always be King – i.e., it’s tough to beat the leverage that compensation asserts on behavioral changes – communication comes in a close second, particularly where the process of shifting a culture toward innovation is concerned. In an interview I did with Chip Bergh for Forbes – the turn-around CEO for a (at the time) struggling Levi Strauss & Co. – he articulated a specific communication strategy that was one of the more important tools that he used to help evolve the culture of one of the oldest and most successful brands in the world. If it worked for them, it can work for your firm, too. So, your communication strategy should be taken most seriously and not just left to flourish or wilt as a product of chance. What messages are important? How are they communicated? Who communicates them? How often? How are you measuring their impact? Etc.

Third, and perhaps the most obvious, we can see that the more complex and financially successful (and potentially more evolved) firms think about, set their cultures around and invest in innovation in particular ways. If I am a firm leader that wants to institute cultural and practical change toward more aggressive innovation (or even just a partner or associate that wants the same), I would take this to heart. While the above information articulates the market’s positions at a higher altitude, it can provide a template to begin building your own firm’s plan.
culture  innovation  firms 
march 2019 by JordanFurlong
Husch Blackwell Conducts Lawyer Challenge to Develop Innovative Client Services | Legaltech News
Husch Blackwell awarded a startup adviser tool the winner of its first firmwide legal innovation challenge aimed at sparking creative solutions for clients’ challenges. Husch Blackwell’s chief growth officer Dean Boeschen said the competition is another example of how the firm has made a commitment to innovation and is fostering an environment of creative approaches.

“Clients want innovation,” Boeschen said. “One of the things you have to do is make that innovative culture [at the firm] where there’s a free flow of ideas and no fear of failing.”
To be sure, the innovation challenge is one way the firm is encouraging creative approaches to clients’ needs. Indeed, Boeschen noted the firm measures both a lawyer’s innovation and billable hours when assessing bonuses.

“We look at things like firm commitment, client service, how involved they are on our client service teams and other client development and industry structures,” Boeschen said. “And one of the things we look at is innovation. … We are looking at that as behaviors we want to encourage beyond the billable hour. From a client
innovation 
march 2019 by JordanFurlong
Innovation Part 1: What it Is and What it Isn't | Rainmaking Oasis, LLC
With so much buzz about the need for innovation in the legal profession, it can be overwhelming and also very misleading. Many misconstrue that innovation in law firms is all about technology.  It isn’t.  Some of the most fundamental innovation that is occurring has to do with how work is done, why, by whom and for whom. Innovation focuses on people, process and platform. Technology will be an essential enabler of the transformation taking place in the profession, but it is not in and of itself innovation in the delivery of legal services.
innovation 
march 2019 by JordanFurlong
Linklaters Makes 1st Startup Investment in Nivaura’s $20m Funding, A&O + Orrick Also Invest – Artificial Lawyer
Global legal services business, Linklaters, has this morning announced its first ever startup investment in fintech company Nivaura, as part of a $20m funding round that rival Allen & Overy (A&O) also participated in. US firm, Orrick, also invested as part of this new round, the startup’s fifth stage of funding so far.

Nivaura, has been part of A&O’s FUSE legal tech space, and in which A&O also invested last year, is ‘a regulated FinTech company focused on automating the issuance and administration processes for financial instruments’ said the firm. Other investors include The London Stock Exchange Group, Santander InnoVentures and Aegon insurance. 

In short: that’s an incredibly impressive collection of investors that shows just how important many think this company will be, which uses automation and machine learning. It’s also impressive that two serious rivals from London, such as Linklaters and A&O are going to share in the part ownership of this company. Clearly they see it as not just a good investment, but as important to their client base.

So, what’s the fuss about? Here’s what they say about the startup:

‘Founded three years ago, Nivaura’s focus is on the deployment of digital investment banking platforms for banks, exchanges and other financial institutions. These platforms connect and automate fragmented and manual processes involved in the issuance and administration of instruments such as debt, equity and structured notes. This has the potential to significantly reduce time to market and costs.’

And, if we leave out the financial bits, the message is clear: this is about automation and data collection to reduce manual work, i.e. efficiency.

The firm added that the investment will allow Nivaura to expand its leadership, business development and technical teams in order to accelerate growth. In particular, it will ramp up expertise across machine learning and natural language processing, in line with the increasingly complex automation needs of Nivaura’s clients. The company also plans to enter new jurisdictions and to cover new asset classes.

But….why is Linklaters investing now? This is what they say:
startups  firms  innovation 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Allen & Overy Expands Consulting Arm, Launches Client News Service | The American Lawyer
A&O global head of research and library services Sarah Fahy said that clients want “the right information coming to them in the right quantity,” but often “don’t have the staff and skills in-house to do their own research on an ongoing basis.”

Dickinson added that A&O has been the “driving force” behind the new product and that the new platform has the potential to turn firms’ library teams, traditionally seen as a cost center within a business, into a “value-add” service.

A&O also announced Friday that it is expanding its regulatory consulting business in Australia. That business launched in London last year.
km  innovation  startups  consulting 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Partnering with Clients to Drive Practical Innovation (Live #ArkLib) - Prism Legal
To get to the new approach at retail company, firm had to actively engage the client, at outset and ongoing basis. The legal ops person had to take chance to push for change in her company. The firm helped the legal ops person with the internal corporate selling. One in-house lawyer was very resistant. Firm helped legal ops sell the engagement on a fixed fee basis.

The key point here is that this program is very close to revenue. Toby worked with the lawyer to sell new business. Client reaction was very positive and included several tweaks in approach over time (a few months since it went live). Gwyn reports there were weekly meetings initially.

For this engagement, technology was a minor piece. The big piece was changing the process.

Gwyn explains how to approach clients with innovation. Start by working client to explain the approach, gain buy-in. KM is involved, not directly with the selling, but with Toby to make sure delivery will work and be profitable. In that initial phase, firm does some process mapping with client. That’s part of initial scoping discussion.

Next step is to build proof of concept. Direct client contact by KM becomes very important here because the firm needs to collect a lot of detail from the client. Gwyn notes that lawyers don’t usually like to sit through these meetings. But multiple iterations were required to collect the right information to handle each matter appropriately.

Once the design was done, the firm had to execute on the mechanics of doing the work. For example, associates were not part of client discussion. They need to be informed how to handle the work. Key success factors include:
firms  clients  innovation  km 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
AI Platform Luminance Teams with EY Law in Global Deal | Legaltech News
Big 4 accountant EY has signed a deal to begin using Slaughter and May-backed artificial intelligence company Luminance across its global legal network.
Luminance, which was founded in 2016, uses pattern recognition and machine learning algorithms to read legal documents, making contract review processes more efficient.

EY Law’s Belfast office was an early adopter of Luminance along with Slaughter and May in 2017, but previously the rest of its network did not have access.
A statement from the company said EY Law intends to use the platform for large-scale document review, particularly M&A due diligence.

EY global law lead Cornelius Grossman told Legal Week he sees AI capability as central in providing “competitive services in the field of contract review and due diligence”, and added that the firm looked at a number of products before choosing Luminance.

Luminance CEO Emily Foges said: “Law firms are not traditionally known for their adoption of technology, and it’s the opposite for EY.”

She added that the firm is “bringing together technology with the law in a way that’s very exciting for us”.

Last week, Luminance announced its second major fundraising round, which valued the company at $100m (£77.5m). Luminance CEO Emily Foges said the extra capital would be used for new hires at the company’s Cambridge headquarters and for financing global expansion.

Along with Slaughters, Luminance also counts Eversheds Sutherland, Bird & Bird, and McDermott Will & Emery as law firm clients.
robo  accountants  innovation  competition 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Mandatory Budgets? At a Law Firm? You Have Got to Be … Thompson Hine | The American Lawyer
Despite the unanimous agreement to budget all matters, it was not without some resistance. After announcing the policy, some partners, in jest, compared Lamb to Hernán Cortés, the Spanish general who in 1519 ordered his troops to burn their ships on the shores of Mexico as they prepared for battle.

But there was no going back, Lamb said.

“Lawyers are like cats. They don’t like to be herded,” Lamb said. “But I had learned over time that if you tell professionals what you really expect from them and hold them to it, they respond much better than if you just ask.”

Read said the firm’s strategy in spreading adoption of the tool worked. “We got more core converts and more secondary adopters,” she said.

Better Budgets
More law departments are requiring that their outside counsel provide budgets for legal matters. At companies with more than 51 in-house lawyers, 64 percent of general counsel require budgets from their law firm partners, according to a 2018 Altman Weil survey. That figure is up from 57 percent the year prior.

Still, general counsel are somewhat frustrated by the results. More than 1 in 5 general counsel said requiring budgets did not result in significant cost control improvements. That was the highest rate of dissatisfaction among 15 different strategies to control costs, such as shifting work to lower cost firms or using alternative fees.

One reason for the frustration may be that having a budget doesn’t mean you will stick to it. Read and Lamb are now fighting that battle at Thompson Hine.

The firm’s budgeting system is tied in with real-time billing data, and the system sends Lamb alerts when lawyers are going over budget for particular phases of the matter. When those alerts first started rolling in, Lamb said he would call partners and ask what was sending the case over budget. That led to some “culture shock,” Lamb said, where partners would push back against having “their” matters managed by the firm.

His response: “It’s the firm’s case. It’s the firm’s resources. You’re putting the firm’s associates on the matter. And the firm has some say in how you use its resources.”

Lamb now has a paralegal who handles those conversations, which he says are becoming smoother.
process  budgets  client  firms  innovation  management  leadership 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
A theory of legal industry events (083) | Legal Evolution
What made Inspire.legal both worthwhile and unique was how the Unpanel format leveraged the diversity in the room. Rather than giving all the airtime to established experts, we got to hear from people based upon how much they cared about a problem. In the session I ran on “Who should pay for the training of the next generation of legal professionals?,” we heard from deans, law students, law professors, current and former law firm associates, law firm PD and learning professionals, founders of legaltech companies, legal journalists, KM directors, and many others.
conferences  innovation 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Inspire.Legal Case Study: Building a New Frame of Reference for the Ecosystem Era (084) | Legal Evolution
The Big Law diaspora doesn’t always leave the nest: a handful of the most prestigious firms in Big Law are deploying former practitioners as change agents. Of particular interest is the growing cohort of roles in practice technology and KM. These roles sit at the intersection of user desirability (and technical feasibility. The proliferation of such roles at firms like Latham, Cravath, Cooley and White & Case signals that at least a handful of incumbents are getting serious about the modernization of legal practice. The continuing evolution of the size and shape of most leverage models is likely a factor in this diversion of legal talent away from an ever-lengthening and increasingly uncertain partnership track. In my analysis, this supports rather than detracts from the hypothesis that former practitioners with Big Law experience will play increasingly active roles in legal innovation.
conferences  innovation 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Are Cybersecurity Solutions and Consulting a New Revenue Stream for Law Firms? | Legaltech News
Recently, Keesal Young & Logan’s client consulting team spun up a sister company, Keesal Propulsion Labs (KPL), to augment its service offerings for key clients through a partnership with Mitratech for Mitratech’s TAP Workflow Automation and Privva for Third-Party Vendor Risk Management. The law firm leverages the Privva platform for vendor risk assessment on behalf of the firm and as part of the firm’s client-facing cyber risk practice, and KPL is building custom legal and business process automation workflows on TAP for clients in Silicon Valley and on Wall Street.

These are not just tools purchased; KPL meets with Privva and Mitratech regularly and has become part of the development feedback loop, helping to improve the products by sharing lessons learned in the field.

“By investing our time and energy in our relationships with these strategic partners, we are able to provide integrated solutions featuring best-in-class people, process and tech — each professional and organization focusing on what they do best, while all acting as one unit” says Justin Hectus, KPL Principal and Keesal Young & Logan’s CIO/CISO and a member of Cybersecurity Law & Strategy’s Board of Editors.

A Worldwide Development
subsidiaries  innovation  it 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Alston & Bird Partners With Georgia State University on Legal Analytics | Legaltech News
Alston & Bird is headed back to school. The Atlanta-based firm is partnering with the Legal Analytics Lab at Georgia State University to receive some hands-on tutoring in data analytics and related tools such as machine learning and text mining. In return, the firm’s attorneys will guest-lecture in graduate-level classes and participate in analytics programs on campus.
Beyond the mutual educational value, the partnership grants Alston some independence from the whims of the legal tech marketplace, where attorneys can sometimes be at the mercy of vendors. As law schools dive deeper into the technology sphere, a symbiotic relationship with firms could combine the practical experience and scientific exploration needed to refine the next generation of legal technology.

While Alston won’t be turning its back on third-party analytics products any time soon, the firm’s senior director of legal technology innovation Nola Vanhoy said they are looking to dive a bit deeper with their approach to tech.
“I don’t think we just want to limit ourselves to waiting for the market to try and deliver to us. We want to think more about it,” Vanhoy said.

Alston had a preexisting relationship with GSU that included internships with students who had a strong background in analytics. Fresh blood—even temporary fresh blood—helped keep the firm abreast of technological developments and other potential advances worth watching.

Vanhoy said the presence of those people kept Alston fresh. Without an influx of new ideas or concepts, it’s easy for a business to fall into a rut.
schools  firms  innovation  analytics 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Slaughter and May, Others Invest $10 Million in Legal Tech Provider Luminance | Legaltech News
Machine learning-powered legal tech service provider Luminance has announced it raised $10 million from previous investors, including Magic Circle firm Slaughter and May.
The announcement on Feb. 7 said the $10 million was also backed by Invoke Capital and Talis Capital. Luminance currently offers compliance; due diligence/risk identification; lease review and portfolio analysis; and e-discovery platforms with plans to expand its user base to more law firms around the globe.

Luminance Technologies CEO Emily Foges said the recent investment would be used to acquire more office space, developers and increase its sales team.
Foges said the salespeople will be critical in explaining to law firms how Luminance can help their practice. To Foges, Luminance enhances the speed of legal services through artificial intelligence and maintains the firm’s quality through the lawyer’s input and the software’s machine learning.
innovation  subsidiaries  it 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Allen & Overy Brings Fuse Incubator to Its New York Offices | Legaltech News
This week, attorneys at Allen & Overy’s New York office are being tasked with bringing some creativity to legal services. But they won’t be doing it alone. As part of the law firm’s “U.S. Legal Tech Week,” its New York-based attorneys and clients will have a chance to interact and collaborate with four startups from the firm’s Fuse incubator.
To be sure, this isn’t the first time these Allen & Overy attorneys have come into contact with Fuse. Shruti Ajitsaria, head of Fuse and counsel at Allen & Overy, said the firm regularly hosts video conferencing sessions between its worldwide offices and its incubator, which is housed at the firm’s London headquarters.

The U.S. Legal Tech Week, however, will be the first chance attorneys in New York get to interact with Fuse startups in person. “What we haven’t been able to do up until now is bring [Fuse] members to New York and develop a relationship of trust and a one-to-one relationship,” Ajitsaria said.
Fuse, which launched in 2017 and supports a rotating mix of eight startups, is somewhat different from other incubators in the legal market in that it focuses solely on fostering legal tech innovation and forgoes equity investment.
innovation  subsidiaries  it 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Allen & Overy Expands Consulting Arm, Launches Client News Service | Legaltech News
Allen & Overy is ramping up its alternative client offering with the use of a new tool developed in its tech incubation program Fuse, as well as expanding its consulting business in Australia.

The new product, Vable Connect, provides a web-based platform that enables clients to receive research and news on relevant matters via their lawyers.
Information provider Vable was part of A&O’s first Fuse tech program intake in 2017 and worked with the firm to create a product that collates online news and information for lawyers to send to clients. It was founded in 2004 by former Manches lawyer Matthew Dickinson.

A&O global head of research and library services Sarah Fahy said that clients want “the right information coming to them in the right quantity,” but often “don’t have the staff and skills in-house to do their own research on an ongoing basis.”

Dickinson added that A&O has been the “driving force” behind the new product and that the new platform has the potential to turn firms’ library teams, traditionally seen as a cost center within a business, into a “value-add” service.
km  it  innovation  firms 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Outside Law Firm Panel Convergence – Innovation Driver or Innovation Destroyer? | DennisKennedy.Blog
Stories abound these days about general counsels wanting their outside law firms to help them with innovation and technology efforts. My own conversations indicate that the real wish goes a step further. General counsel want their outside firms to bring them measurable value with innovation and technology initiatives that align with their legal and, more importantly, business goals. Even a quick scan of a recent survey results from Thompson Hine will have you agreeing with their assessment that there is an “Innovation Gap.” Only 29% of participants said that their outside firms have brought them “significant” innovation.
convergence  clients  firms  innovation 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Behind Elevate’s Buying Binge: Liam Brown’s Meticulous Strategy | The American Lawyer
One answer can be found on a single piece of paper that Brown uses to detail the company’s strategy. It includes three broad “value propositions,” roughly 20 “initiatives” and, for each of those, some five or six more specific tasks are detailed. In short, there is a lot more building to do at the 1,200-employee company that Brown said expects to bring in about $80 to $90 million in revenue this year.

Brown doesn’t expect his recent acquisitions to drastically alter the company’s trajectory. He said it may take 10 to 20 years to reach his long-term financial goal to hit $1 billion in revenue. But each piece is required to offer what Brown sees as a full suite of legal services ranging from traditional law firm partner advice to advanced offerings that require artificial intelligence expertise, which the company bolstered through its November purchase of Dan Katz’s LexPredict business.

“We think building a multidisciplinary company is going to be how you solve business problems in the future that have a legal element,” Brown said.

Elevate’s strategy starts with three main “value propositions” Brown says the company offers. Those are: ”Innovate” how legal work is done by law departments to manage risk. “Improve” visibility, predictability, control and costs of law department operations. And to “elevate” services for law firms to improve the value and efficiency they deliver to clients.

Elevate has won the work to back up this strategy. Partnering with its ElevateNext law firm platform, Elevate has changed the way Univar Inc.’s legal department handles portions of its work and how it pays outside counsel. On the law firm side, Hogan Lovells has said it is partnering with Elevate to offer flexible lawyer staffing to clients.
offshoring  newlaw  innovation 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Eversheds Sutherland and Clifford Chance split innovation and back office tech teams | Legal IT Insider
Both Eversheds Sutherland and Clifford Chance have recently restructured their legal technology teams, separating client-facing innovation from back office IT.

Eversheds Sutherland IT director Andrew McManus now focuses exclusively on client-facing technology and also spearheads the firm’s innovation push.

“A separate team looks after the platform of technology that sits behind the scenes, making sure we are billing correctly, storing our documents in the right place, that our emails are working and our data is secure,” McManus told Legal IT Insider as part of our new series of profiles of the top 200 firms’ legal technology operations.

Will Jenkins, also IT director, heads up this delivery and operational IT team.  Jenkins joined Eversheds Sutherland from Hogan Lovells in September last year.

“When I joined four and a half years ago, I was IT director of both areas,” McManus explains. “But four and a half years ago, were our clients and our lawyers demanding so much technology?  Was technology affecting the legal sector as much as it is now?  Clearly not.  And we are keen to make sure that do we don’t spread ourselves too thinly.”
it  innovation 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Deloitte, Relativity Partnership Produces First Innovation: A FOIA Workflow Tool | Legaltech News
A year after Deloitte entered into an alliance with e-discovery software provider Relativity, the two have now announced the creation of an end-to-end workflow platform geared towards managing and responding to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests.

Deloitte’s new disclosure solution was developed with the government agencies responding to FOIA requests in mind. But it’s also potentially good news for attorneys who don’t particularly enjoy standing around looking at their watch. Chris Knox, Deloitte’s risk and financial advisory managing director and leader in the Federal Discovery practice, said that savvy attorneys have begun to utilize the FOIA in the vein of a pre-litigation discovery request.
One slight wrinkle? The government is dealing with an epic backlog of about 100,000 FOIA requests per year. That’s not a problem that you can simply be addressed by just throwing more bodies at the wall.
it  accountants  innovation  competition 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
Wilson Sonsini Launches Software Developer Subsidiary to Automate Legal Services | Legaltech News
iming to attract a broader mix of clients, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati on Tuesday became one of the first Am Law 100 firms to formally launch a software development business.

The Silicon Valley-based firm has launched a subsidiary called SixFifty, named after the firm’s address and area code in Palo Alto. Its first automated legal product, launching this spring, will draft documents for compliance with the California Consumer Privacy Act, which takes effect in January 2020.

Beyond that, SixFifty is building out a legal services automation platform that will ultimately provide services for both companies and consumers, said Douglas Clark, Wilson Sonsini’s managing partner. SixFifty, like most automated legal services, will not provide legal advice.

“We’re not trying to replace ourselves,” Clark said in an interview. “We’re trying to help clients access sophisticated legal knowledge more efficiently.”
robo  innovation 
february 2019 by JordanFurlong
'Change' Is a Mantra for Law Firms, But Will They Tune In? | Law.com
To Ralph Baxter, the former chairman of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, nearly everything about law firms will need to change if they are to be successful in the near future. They will need to re-examine their financial model; their resources model; their underlying legal services delivery model; and their investment model, Baxter said.
“Associates earn $200,000 when they barely know where the office is,” said Baxter, who is now a board member of professional services technology company Intapp. “That is the lowest-cost resource in a law firm. And you’re going to compete with [alternative providers]? Nobody starting from scratch would start with that model. And so you have to address that. And if you’re not willing to address that, you’re not going to have a chance at competing.”

While Baxter’s message may ultimately be right, according to James Goodnow, the managing partner of Am Law 200 firm Fennemore Craig, there is also a risk that what conversations about change will be tuned out by law firm partners who are still making healthy salaries from traditional law firm models.

“Until it starts hitting partners in the pocketbook, they will not believe it,” Goodnow said. “There is no existential threat, or perceived existential threat, and so that is why there’s no change. So what’s the problem? We are all part of the problem. We have been saying the same thing over and over again. We’ve said, ‘Change is coming. We need to rethink everything.’ And the partners at the law firms have heard this. And it’s like the boy who cried wolf. Nothing has happened. And the law firm partners are doing very well. So because of that, you have tremendous skepticism among a group of people who are very skeptical to begin with.”
change  innovation  process  firms  partners  competition 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
DWF unveils plan for blockbuster stock market listing - Legal Futures
The blockbuster listing – likely to value the firm at around £600m – would make at least 25% of the firm’s shares available to investors. Though no figures have been released yet, DWF is thought to be looking to raise £50-100m.

The selling partner shareholders would hold a majority of the shares after admission.

DWF has 27 offices in 14 jurisdictions and employs 3,100 people focusing on insurance, financial services and real estate. It has a connected services division made up of 12 businesses offering other services around the legal advice.

In a ‘potential intention to float’ notice published today, the firm said it saw “a large consolidation opportunity… in a highly fragmented global market for legal and connected services”.

It said the acquisition growth strategy would focus on international expansion and accelerated development of the connected services division.

On the latter, it said: “Acquisition priorities are to: (i) acquire new product, software and technology capabilities, (ii) improve the geographical coverage of existing service lines, (iii) gain additional complementary services and solutions for DWF’s practice areas and specialisms and (iv) build out DWF’s current consulting capabilities within the connected services market to take advantage of the sizeable market opportunity.”
clementi  innovation  newlaw 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
Lex Mundi Partners With Diligen To Offer Artificial Intelligence Contract Review Tool | Diligen
TORONTO, Dec. 13, 2018 — Diligen, an award-winning artificial intelligence (AI)-based contract assistant, announced a partnership today with Lex Mundi, the world’s leading network of independent law firms. Lex Mundi’s 160 member firms will be able to leverage Diligen’s AI and machine learning capabilities to review contracts faster and more accurately, thereby improving workflow efficiencies and gaining competitive advantage.
networks  innovation  robo 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
Fractal dysfunction and the mathematics of #biglaw innovation
Jae’s series on the mechanics of legal innovation, describing innovation costs and funding, targeting the right innovations and the talent required to execute, is a must-read for anyone focused on real innovation in the legal sector. But for each firm, where and how to invest begins with an empirical diagnosis of their competitive position and strategic direction to determine the innovation vectors specific to their business. The corporate world has a very technical term for this: hard work.

With legal innovation, WHY is essentially the same for all firms; but WHERE and HOW is specific to each firm. Innovation is situational, with widely varying starting points, directions and magnitudes depending on where you sit in the legal ecosystem, the current state of your firm, of your competitors, of the markets you serve and the macro environment that you and your clients operate in. But unlike vectors in math, you also need to define terminal points: measurable targets that shape the future-state of your firm.
strategy  innovation 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
Hogan Lovells Uses Simulated Law Firms to Train Real Partners
Hogan Lovells is amping up its attorney training by engaging newly promoted partners in computer simulations that allow them to test their skills at running a global law firm.

Hogan hired Simulation Studios, a corporate training firm, to create the digital leadership development program for its 2018 equity partner class.

The training was the first for any new equity partner class and is part of the firm’s commitment to partner development on a global scale, Michelle Nash, Hogan’s director of learning and development, told Bloomberg Law.

Since the 2010 merger of Hogan & Hartson and Lovells, the firm’s been dedicated to making annual, incremental advances in its global culture and this training is the one result of that goal, Nash explained.

During the three-day pilot program in June of last year, about 25 equity partners from Hogan’s 2018 class gathered in Monaco prior to the firm’s global partners conference to compete in teams of five against one another running their own simulated law firms.
firms  training  partners  innovation 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
The 20 Most Important Legal Technology Developments of 2018 | LawSites
What a whirlwind of a year it has been for legal technology. Barely a week into 2018, industry-changing news broke of Avvo’s sale to Internet Brands. Legal tech news has been nonstop ever since – so much that it’s a struggle to keep up with it all.

For several years now, I’ve closed out the year with a round-up of the 10 most important legal developments (2016, 2015, 2014, 2013). Last year, I bypassed the top 10 to focus on a single overarching development, The Year of Women in Legal Tech.

This year, a top-10 list won’t suffice. So much of significance has happened that I can’t sum it all up in just 10 points. Instead, I’m doubling the list to offer my top 20 picks for the year’s most important legal technology developments.

As in past years, the order in which I list these is not meant to be a ranking by importance. They are all important, each in their own way.
it  robo  innovation 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
Legal’s 2019 Tech Challenge: Getting Everyone on the Same Page | Corporate Counsel
For many legal departments, the demands of 2019 will not be much different from recent years: Do more work with less resources.

“The scope of work in many legal functions has increased, and the amount of work various legal teams are tasked with [has increased], with not significant increases in their ­budgets or headcount,” says Sowmyan “Sam” Ranganathan, senior director of information governance and legal ops at pharmaceutical company AbbVie and chair of the ­Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC) legal operations group.

Facing such belt-tightening, legal departments are striving to elicit efficiencies by learning skills like project management and, equally as important, leveraging legal technology.

Ranganathan says that for many this year, such technology will likely include contract management and workflow automation products. But there are other platforms corporate legal teams are eyeing to streamline their operations as well.
clients  it  process  newlaw  innovation 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
NRF meets client demand with new legal ops grad scheme | Legal IT Insider
Norton Rose Fulbright has launched a new graduate scheme focused on business and legal operations. The two-year programme will be built around a series of rotations through business solutions; commercial management; innovation; legal project management; and pricing and resource management.

“The decision to launch the scheme is driven by the business need to support our internal change and innovation programme,” commercial director David Carter told Legal IT Insider. “Clients are increasingly telling us that how we deliver services is as important as the quality of the technical legal advice they receive in terms of value.”

Carter added that the huge opportunities that the firm sees to tap into new business lines by offering different delivery propositions are already being exploited.

“Just this week, we won a major mandate with a FTSE 100 company where all the engagement was driven out of these teams, rather than our legal teams. The demand is definitely there and we need first rate people to deliver it,”

In addition to increased client demand, Norton Rose Fulbright’s decision to launch the grad scheme was driven by a pronounced skills shortage. Despite a growing number of specialist courses created by a number of law schools, and lateral moves from other industries and from within law itself, many law firms are facing a recruitment challenge in this burgeoning area.

“In the face of this skills shortage, we have made the significant decision to mould these people ourselves,” said Carter. “Another advantage of a grad scheme is that it gives participants the opportunity to experience all the different elements that we are looking at. It is really important that these things are interconnected. We see the scheme as a powerful natural hedge against silos.”
ops  innovation  schools  admission  training  recruiting 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
A&O opening Fuse tech lab for third round as it partners on AI project
Allen & Overy (A&O) will open its technology incubator space Fuse to a third group of companies from early next year, as it partners with a University of Oxford AI project.

The firm announced today (December 13) that applications to enter Fuse will be welcomed from companies until 25 January. A selection pitch to the firm will follow in February before successful applicants move into the space shortly after. Both early stage and mature companies can apply, joining Fuse for about six months.

Shruti Ajitsaria, head of Fuse, commented: ‘Fuse acts as a radar enabling us to understand what is out there in terms of technology-driven solutions to the challenges that our lawyers and clients face every day. Selecting a new cohort will enable us to continue to be a destination and a collaborative partner for best-in-class tech companies with whom we find synergies.’
incubator  startup  innovation 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
Is UnitedLex the Future? Dan Reed Thinks So. | The American Lawyer
So I found myself on a conference room floor at Latham & Watkins’ Midtown offices, trying to work an espresso machine with the help of a receptionist—the lone Latham employee who appeared to know I was there.
Reed was there with at least one other UnitedLex executive—Nancy Jessen, a longtime Huron Consulting executive who now runs the part of UnitedLex’s business that is seeking to transform corporate legal departments through a blend of outsourcing, technology and process improvement. She was a leader on a deal with DXC Technology that, prior to the mystery of Reed’s presence at Latham that morning, I had been most eager to discuss.

The DXC deal was novel in an industry hungry for clues about its own transformation. No other legal department had “rebadged” 150 lawyers to a third party in the way DXC did with UnitedLex. No other legal department had told the public it cut its legal spending by 30 percent. No other legal department was planning, with the help of UnitedLex, to roll out a kind of TaskRabbit model (think: gig economy) whereby lawyers, as independent contractors, would negotiate the company’s contracts on an ad hoc basis—from their homes, or the nearest coffee shop.

Today, 14 percent of America’s law school graduates get hired by law firms with more than 100 lawyers. They are the lone cohort of graduates that, over the last eight years, has reliably earned six-figure median salaries, according to the National Association of Law Placement—testimony to the grip the nation’s largest firms have had on corporate America’s legal dollars. If UnitedLex’s model takes off, what happens to that percentage—and to the law schools, lawyers, law firms and corporate legal departments designed around current expectations? When corporate legal work gets handled in bits by a larger swathe of the legal workforce, who wins and who loses?
offshoring  newlaw  innovation  competition 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
Kennedys KLAIM Automation Platform Goes Global, Now in US, Oz + More – Artificial Lawyer
eading insurance law firm Kennedys has taken its KLAIM workflow and legal process automation system global, rolling out the home-built application into the US market for the first time, along with Australia, Hong Kong and offshore reinsurance centre, Bermuda.

KLAIM has been developed at the London-based firm over several years, with the team behind it steadily adding new capabilities as it has evolved (see feature). Now, the platform has been provided to clients in some of the world’s other key insurance markets, in some cases tailored with specialised capabilities that fit local needs. For example in the US, KLAIM ‘Subro’ will help clients settle subrogated recoveries without the need to resort to lawyers.

The web-based platform provides built-in templates and guidance notes that guide the user through the litigation process via a workflow, along with an automated diary and traffic light system. KLAIM also auto-populates and generates all the relevant court documentation for the client.

The logic behind KLAIM has always been to allow its large insurance clients to reduce the amount of legal process work that would otherwise need to be done by lawyers, and that would take time and add extra costs that insurance companies are very keen to avoid. Put simply they are saving their clients money through better workflows and the use of automation.

Now, you may then perhaps ask: why do that? The answer is that this lower value process work around defence of insurance claims is not something the world’s leading insurance companies want to hire a top law firm to handle. If the work is going to ‘go away’ at some point in the future, then why not automate parts of it now and ensure that the client stays with you for the more valuable, complex work as well?

Or, to quote Kennedys: ‘Using the collective knowhow of hundreds of our lawyers, it allows clients to deal with litigation without needing to use a lawyer. Clients are settling in excess of 80% of their claims inside the system without the need for a lawyer at all.’
insurance  innovation  it  robo 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
City firm launches 'alternative legal solutions' platform - Legal Futures
City law firm Fieldfisher has created an ‘alternative legal solutions’ platform that offers financial services clients “customisable and process-efficient services, all of which go beyond the traditional law firm offering” – and at a lower cost.

The platform, called Condor, aims to combine the firm’s legal and regulatory expertise with the document, data management and technology solutions of third-party service providers.

It is currently focused on the derivatives and securities financing markets, but FieldFisher plans to expand the concept across all of its practice areas.

The brain-child of derivatives partner Luke Whitmore, the initial range of services are made up of:

A trading documentation unit – operating out of Belfast to negotiate derivatives and other financial markets agreements on a fixed-fee basis;
Data extraction and analytics – bespoke technology-assisted solutions for legal, regulatory or documentation reviews and issue identification based upon document digitisation, data extraction and data analytics; and
Large-scale documentation project delivery – delivery of large-scale documentation and documentation remediation projects combining legal and regulatory advice and documentation negotiation with project/process management and technology-assisted “counterparty outreach”.
subsidiaries  innovation 
january 2019 by JordanFurlong
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