Legal utopia for GCs needs to focus on problems

By Grace Ormsby|18 December 2018

The growth of the legal operations profession may aid in reducing resourcing limitations of in-house legal teams, but shouldn’t be used for problem solving, according to a new report.

‘Cutting through the **I.T. – Decoding the legal tech market’ is the latest In Collaboration report from Lawyers on Demand with Ron Friedmann, which said that “many in-house legal teams have few resources to support new legal tech and change.”

While growth of the profession may “help to change this limitation,” the report did concede that “legal ops professionals appear to be pulled in many directions, and only some will make technology a priority.”

“To acquire, deploy, and ensure adoption of new tech may require adding resources,” it said.

Listing off the “pains” that general counsel face, the report noted the most extreme factor stopping GCs from doing a good job as being “time-poor and unable to prioritise strategic [sic]”. 

Firefighting instead of being able to be thoughtful, and finding out about proposed changes too late and ending up as a “blocker” rounded out the top three issues.

For “gains”, GCs indicated that more time for strategic advice, visibility across an individual’s ecosystem and “legal seen as an enabler” would make the most difference.

“There is a great deal of similarity in what people consider prevents them from doing a good job and what they feel are the things that will lead to legal utopia,” it noted.

Practically, the report said that the information collected showcases a focus on problems, and not on specific technologies; therefore, should be the way that in-house teams and general counsels approach problem solving, and not through the blind use of technology.

“The point is, start with a problem, not a technology,” was iterated.

Lawyers Weekly previously covered the seven-step checklist provided by the report to aid in framing problems and to consider whether “investing in technology is the right solution.

Legal utopia for GCs needs to focus on problems
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