In spite of the intransigence commonly associated with legal professionals, there is an evolution afoot within legal departments in how they deliver and think of their services. The first day of the Corporate Legal Operations Consortium’s (CLOC) 2017 institute hosted those at the front lines of corporate legal’ s transformation, from legal teams at Shell Oil Co and DHL streamlining their outside counsel spend to Facebook’s legal operations taming its disparate data using machine learning technology.
These companies moving to innovate corporate services have altered the perception of what will be expected of corporate legal in the near future. Artificial intelligence, for example, once a far off outlier in the legal ecosystem, is now sparking interest from all corners of the legal department, and leaving many to ask: How can I prepare to implement this technology in-house?
However legal departments decide to modernize their services, they will be a core part of this effort. Legal operations as a specialty has grown in the recent years in response to new demands placed on corporate legal. It’s through their ability and desire to implement innovations that corporate legal will seize the future.
While the inaugural day of CLOC 2017 focused on what is possible and what is happening, Day 2 will look at how these technologies and processes can make their way into the broader corporate legal market. This will include how corporate legal can leverage technology they already use to elicit unique data insights or how they can implement a new efficient process from start to finish.
But it will also include how legal departments can change their culture, enabling them to be more receptive to change and growth and turn inventive ideas into reality. Efficiency, cost-savings, and artificial intelligence, after all, are just hollow buzzwords unless one gets into the thick of it and knows how to actually implement those concepts in a practical, understandable way. For many legal departments, the time has come to put their money—and their reputation—where their mouth is and hit the ground running.