A transparent relationship between the Chief Legal Officer and the Executive Leadership Team significantly contributes to a positive business perception of the in-house legal department. A sure way to foster such a relationship is by creating a thriving, tech-savvy team that harnesses data to create a CLO’s hotlist to inform the business of top priorities in legal.
Robust end-to-end use of legal tech is the linchpin to generating actionable data for the legal team. The systematic collection and organization of key data points presented via real-time dashboards allow for requests and reports to be easily generated. To gain the benefits of dashboarding, the legal team must strategize and execute well on front-end data input. Real and collaborative matter management performed in one system creates a single source of truth. and paying close attention to fields of information they are frequently asked to compile. Legal teams seldom fully optimize the data harnessing capabilities of the software, breaking this mold means that you can generate valuable reports that give the team and business transparency as to where they are operating. These reports can be used weekly by the GC when they meet with the ELT, allowing them to keep the business informed on the status of important Mergers and Acquisitions, or costly lawsuits.
This tech allows for the active tracking of legal matters, which is critical in prioritizing legal work and more importantly risk and risk mitigation. However, it can be overwhelming to comprehend which data is of relevance when it comes to live matters, especially when you may have 200 live at once. Your team can organize their matters so that matters surface by the highest priority such as risk, potential financial liability, or reputational risk. The GC wants oversight over the most critical and pressing matters such as mergers or divestitures. They also want detailed data on the status of such matters so they can relay to the ELT.
A significant factor in creating a legal team that genuinely generates valuable data is accountability. Who is responsible for monitoring that data is being populated across matters? Is it a paralegal or a legal operations advisor? Do you need to meet with outside counsel to determine the level of data required when outsourcing work to them? This is particularly important when dealing with patent work, as it is not always clear who is recording information during the back and forth communication. Training some people to be champions for the software is beneficial, as they can assist other in0house counsel with the platform and manage the generation of reports for the GC.
A tech-savvy legal team will support their GC with business intelligence skills. The ELT loves the visual presentation of information, when the CLO is presenting their hotlist they want to be able to use data-rich graphs, reportable lists, and robust visualization tools that speak to the status of the legal team. The ELT can digest and interpret this information which results in a more transparent relationship between legal and the business.
Legal is constantly asked to demonstrate their worth to the business. A tech-savvy team that is supporting their GC with data-rich information is proving their value and breaking down the legal silo. A hotlist empowers stakeholders by giving them transparency into the live legal status of their business. In a publicly listed company, this is critical.