More and more, organizations are realizing that transforming legal processes based on an industrialized legal target operating model is good for business. And while the CFO does see the value of lower costs, standard processes and a balanced workload, many legal teams struggle to get past some common barriers:
This is the word I hear the most when people talk about legal processes. And I agree. I am a lawyer so I know how difficult and complex things can get in the day-to-day job. I also understand why some lawyers feel that their processes are too complex to outsource.
But are all activities that complex? There are in fact, a number of repetitive and simple activities where industrialization, standardization and best in class processes can help legal teams allocate resources more effectively and at the same time reduce costs.
I realize that there is no “one magic model” that will fit all needs, so it’s important that each organization develop its own “to-be model” depending on their unique business environment. Partners like Capgemini can help you define the right model based on experience from working with other organizations across multiple industries.
Lawyers are extremely busy people. This is of course not helpful when time is required for workshops or process reviews in order to deconstruct your activities and analyze and shape a new target operating model.
Yes, it takes time, but if time is not dedicated then what happens is…nothing. And the cost of doing nothing will continue to build due to inefficient processes, even more complex contracts, and increased pressure from the business to get things done faster.
Believe me, making the time will bring value. For example, I recently facilitated a workshop with a legal team and during the short timeframe we spent analyzing their processes against a best-practice Global Process Model, we reallocated resources to streamline and focus the teams which resulted in huge savings in external legal spend.
3. Change Management
Change Management is key in legal transformation. I often hear companies ask for support in this area, not only because many lack experience in such projects, but they also see the risk of not having the team aligned to the overall goal and which will cause them to struggle in the new environment.
Having change management experts lead the transformation will ensure the project runs smoothly and on schedule. This will deliver a successful project with tangible benefits, not to mention industrialized processes for running the legal department.
Yes, barriers will remain; to be honest they exist in everything we do. They make the effort more challenging, but also more exciting. The key is to assess the situation, consult experts, consider the alternatives, and take action!