Ask any in-house lawyer how they rate the quality of the use of technology by their outside counsel to improve service delivery and collaboration and the answer is often the same – low. Similarly, Partners and private practice lawyers also have their own frustrations and challenges when attempting to leverage technology to improve their firm’s relationship and engagement with clients.

It was for these reasons that HighQ and LEx Open Source came together recently to run a creative problem-solving workshop to uncover potential fixes for these challenges. The session was facilitated by Mo Ajaz (Head of Legal Operation Excellence at National Grid and founder of LEx Open Source) and Rob MacAdam (VP of Legal Solutions at HighQ).

“HighQ is powering numerous client portals and outside counsel management solutions, however there is still significant scope for law firms and in-house teams to better leverage technology to drive better collaboration, engagement and value. We therefore wanted to gather a broad group of stakeholders to help us collectively tackle this challenge for the benefit of all” says MacAdam.

Whilst many law firms and in-house teams are leveraging platforms such as HighQ to collaboratively work and engage, there is little market standardisation and the user experience is often unsatisfactory, meaning corporate legal teams having to navigate multiple platforms and logins. The workshop gathered together 60 lawyers, general counsel, legal project managers, innovators and legal technologists to tackle a problem statement and map a way through to their desired state.

Problem statement

“Collaboration between law firms and in-house teams is often ineffective due to the failure to properly leverage technology - resulting in poor value delivery, limited productivity, low efficiency and reduced transparency”.

Participants were divided into teams and set a series of activities that saw them identify their ideal state in response to the problem statement, determine and categorise the underlying causes of the problem, explore those causes to ideate solutions, and then prioritise their ideas using the effort vs. impact matrix. The end result was a series of well detailed and defined solutions with an analysis of their impact and the key stakeholders necessary to enact them. For all the insights from the day, download our eBook The future of client portals: notes on a legal design event.

In a first for HighQ, we created a site on our platform prior to the session that could be used by teams to capture all their outputs from the various activities. This allowed themes and trends to be reported in real-time throughout the session in the form of graphs and charts within the HighQ site dashboard, giving attendees complete visibility. The site has subsequently been made open source to all attendees and anyone else who is interested in digging into the findings and outputs from the session. Access can be requested by email to [email protected].

The workshop concluded with a review of the creative problem-solving process and discussion about what each team will be taking away from the day. The day was a rare, but much needed example of law firms, in-house teams and other legal service providers collaborating together to find solutions to a mutual challenge. For this reason, there was a genuine commitment amongst the entire group to reconvene soon to tackle another legal challenge. Watch this space!