Legal Ops - what you need to know.
Put simply, legal ops, (that’s legal operations to the uninitiated) refers to any element of your legal practice that doesn’t involve dealing with the law directly. As you can imagine, it covers a broad range of business operations and staff who work within your practice to maximise efficiency and growth, without actually working with the law.
Think about your IT guys, your finance people, you get the drift. Once the silent behind the scenes workhorse - the supporting actor to the lead role of the law - legal ops is in the midst of its 15 minutes in the limelight with industry wide focus on the development of legal operations as its own function, dedicated to strategising and optimising operations within the legal department.
Designated legal operations teams are becoming more and more common, both in law firms and within the legal functions of larger organisations. Encompassing a large multi-disciplinary umbrella, legal ops can include finance, data analytics, project management, marketing, IT, learning and development, just to name a few. Bringing broader perspectives into the decision-making ensures service delivery is at the forefront of your practice, and that any developments made within the legal function are made with service delivery in mind.
Why the shift in focus you ask? To put a long story short, legacy systems are stunting industry development. Looking for innovative and unorthodox strategies in a fairly rigid industry is always going to be a challenge. Prioritising legal ops demonstrates an industry pivot towards finding new solutions for age-old problems.
The CLOC likens the role of legal ops to that of a ‘trusted business partner’. Legal ops specialists are trusted with highly complex issues; both legal and business. They are required to understand the ins and outs of how the legal function operates, whilst also bringing in an understanding of business strategies to maximise operational efficiency.
Working from home, it’s easy to lose track of business optimisation strategies and efficiency deficits. A designated legal ops specialist will identify and prepare strategies that help lawyers work more efficiently. Effectively, their goal is to optimise the general performance of the practice by removing any barriers that draw a lawyers’ focus from delivering legal services.
Since the pandemic hit, billing is down across the whole industry. It’s not a huge shock, but it means there’s definitely less wriggle room when it comes to expenditure and inefficient business operations. Strengthening your legal operations function will optimise your practice’s ability to deliver value to clients, while ensuring you maximise profit and improve workflow whilst navigating the pandemic and beyond
Nod helps support legal ops by targeting key areas where efficiency is often lacking:
Emphasising the role efficiency plays in improving the operations of your legal practice, automating document creation can reduce the time spent on administrative tasks by up to 80%.. Nod’s code-free automation tech makes the document creation process faster and more compliant which frees up precious hours once devoted to documents for other priorities and business functions.
As a law firm, compliance is pretty high on your list of priorities! Nod ensures compliance across all your documents by allowing you to work off pre-set templates. Making sure all your bases are covered means less errors, less revisions and less risk of accidental non-compliance.
Automating your document creation process enhances the productivity of teams saving time right across the board while ensuring the corporate clock keeps ticking at a lower cost.
You can read more about the perks of document automation here.
If you haven’t spent any time investing in the legal ops of your firm or department , now’s the time to start. Adjusting to COVID normal will continue to be a rocky ride, so make sure you’ve bolstered your legal function to perform at its best. A proactive and effective legal ops team will defend against any unexpected curveballs.