InCounsel Weekly #40: GCs Taking Stock, Jump Into #LegalTech, How to Diversify, Mo Money and A Mental Health Pledge

In this week's edition, we look at some pay statistics for general counsel; how an ex Magic Circle lawyer took the jump into her own startup; why firms must change (while making more money than ever); how GCs can push diversity targets on their externals and Lexoo's pledge for mental health.

Using JIRA to Manage Your In-house Legal Matters

Using JIRA to Manage Your In-house Legal Matters

A couple of weeks ago, I found out that Megaport's legal team were using a project management tool, called JIRA, to manage their workload.

This is a tool that's super popular with software developers and associated with agile methodology. So when I heard about a legal team using this software, it immediately piqued my interest so I thought I'd get them share their experience using the software with you.

Here's how it went down: 

Could a robot do your job?

Could a robot do your job?

That’s the question the ABC in collaboration with research house AlphaBeta have attempted to answer for every occupation in Australia, including solicitors.

Although I’d have to question some of the legal tasks they’ve identified as being easier to automate, what’s interesting is the comparison to other occupations, some of which I’d never thought could be automated.


GC Launches Bootstrap Legal

Amy Wan is the former General Counsel of a real estate crowdfunding platform, Patch of Land, and a real estate securities attorney.

Her clients faced two common problems: #1 they needed their legal documents quickly and #2 the legal fees couldn’t be justified for smaller deals.

Her solution: use automation to help draft legal documents for small real estate projects up to $2 million.

Clients can now complete a form and receive a private placement memorandum (PPM) and other legal documents within 48 hours, signed off (for now I suspect) by Amy.

In her words:

“I didn’t understand why no one was automating the creation of PPMs… I felt like we could do it cheaper, faster and better.”


How to Make Your Agile Legal Team a Success

How to Make Your Agile Legal Team a Success

If you’re an in-house lawyer or GC thinking about how to improve your team’s legal operations – here’s one for you.

Frances Dunn is Senior Legal Counsel at Netwealth Investments, and she’s been using the ‘agile methodology’ to manage her legal team's workload for the past 14 months.

And from what we’ve seen, she’s absolutely nailing it.

So we just couldn’t resist the urge to pick her brains and ask if she’d share what she’s learned with you.

We’re so glad she said yes.

Analytics for Your Legal Bills

Anyone who has pored over legal bills striking out time entries might appreciate this piece of kit.

After 2 years beta testing with banks and insurance companies, IBM Watson has released it’s Outside Counsel Insights engine into the wild (although I’m yet to actually find this elusive creature on the web).

So according to the PR folks, here’s what it does:

it reads “every single word of text in every single line item of every single legal bill” to “see very quickly where a firm had deviated from the spirit and letter of the [company’s billing] guidelines… no more hiding inefficiency in a dense mass of billing data.”