Over the years, the role of the legal department in business has grown. Legal can no longer act as an isolated, insular addition to the greater organization, reacting only as needed when issues arise to solve legal problems. Legal is now tasked with being a strategic partner to the overall organization, expected to drive value, realize returns on investment and have larger impact just like any other department.
“The problem with traditional [enterprise legal management] software was how they limited access to a comparatively narrow number of legal department personnel, necessitating that managers and others outside of legal operations wait on the legal department while executing processes and projects,” Kelli Negro, Mitratech’s Chief Marketing Officer and workflow automation expert, states in her recent blog. “This created a bottleneck that’s an unacceptable drag on agility and responsiveness for a modern enterprise.”
To combat this bottleneck in legal management, Mitratech recently acquired ThinkSmart’s workflow Automation Platform (TAP), a move that radically shifts the legal operations industry. Here are four ways your legal team can use workflow automation to transform not only your department, but your entire business:
1- Connect Legal to the Rest of the Business
The first transformation born from the Mitratech and ThinkSmart combo is that it enables legal to fully integrate and connect to the rest of the business. The truth is that legal management is no longer a process that cuts off at the boundaries of the legal department.
“The integration of TAP, an easy-to-deploy-and-use workflow automation solution, into TeamConnect, a single source of truth, enterprise legal management platform, kicks this outmoded model right out the door,” Negro states.
With workflow automation, you can extend legal processes, such as access to contract management requests, vendor intake, electronic signature tracking and automatic non-disclosure agreements, new matter requests and other legal requests and approvals, to the rest of the business.
Now anyone who needs to, across an organization can submit their legal requests in a streamlined and efficient way, without compromising any of the security concerning the data maintained in legal management systems.
For the first time in history, legal management software can now offer an end-to-end solution that extends across the business. With ease, speed, low cost and automated reliability, companies can now extend legal and compliance best practices into every step of a workflow, anywhere in an enterprise.
2 – Set the Stage for Value and Efficiency In Legal Operations
TeamConnect, Mitratech’s enterprise legal management solution, is already proven to drive efficiencies and value for an organization. According to Mitratech expert Brian McGovern, formerly with AIG, TeamConnect saved his former company an average of 6.7% annually on their legal invoicing alone.
By adding TAP’s workflow automation powers to the mix, companies can now expect those savings to increase both exponentially and immediately. As a proven tool for accelerating legal workflows, TAP’s easy-to-implement (and use) solution allows companies to accomplish more work in less time.
“Combining [TAP] with TeamConnect will not only make it possible to extend [legal management] into enterprise workflows,” Negro states, “Those workflows will also be streamlined, free from human error and completed in a fraction of the time of manual processes.”
With workflow automation, legal teams can execute a non-disclosure agreement process in 1/20th of the time it took before processes were automated.
By combining TAP with TeamConnect, legal operations can now respond to business needs in a more agile manner, streamline and optimize their processes and extend their efficiency to the entire organization.
3 – Make Legal the Center of Your Enterprise
According to an ACC report on law department management, 65% of in-house counsel now say they take part in strategic business decisions. Since businesses want to pay less for legal services while simultaneously increasing the workload of their legal teams, harnessing technology to optimize your team’s efforts and transform your legal department is more important now than ever.
“The new rules boil down to a fairly simple question,” Connie Brenton, Director of Legal Operations at NetApp and President of the Corporate Legal Operations Consortium, states in her recent LawGeek interview. “Like any other department, what value does the legal team provide to the company as a whole?”
By propelling innovation, not just for your department, but across your entire enterprise, you have the opportunity to make legal the central force behind your business strategy. The Mitratech and ThinkSmart duo helps you drive this innovation in two ways (to start with anyhow). The first driver occurs simply through setting up this legal management and workflow automation combo. Just by plugging it in, you can radically alter and streamline legal operations and business processes.
The second driver occurs through these solutions’ abilities to foster a more flexible and open culture of collaboration. Through providing a single source for connecting the business, people can come together to share ideas and brainstorm solutions in a way that feeds your competitive advantage.
4 – Transform Your Enterprise
Traditionally, the legal profession has a reputation for resisting change. Understandably so, as their primary concern often involves evaluating and mitigating risk and protecting the organization. However, with the need to pursue greater efficiency and more agile client services, the only option to keep up with the times is to adopt more efficient business processes and technology solutions.
And in this age of rapidly evolving technology, risk regulations and business needs, simply keeping up is no longer enough. Legal operations must now take up the mantle to drive change and transform their entire enterprise.
The TeamConnect and TAP combo provides the perfect balance for legal operations. It balances TeamConnect’s sturdy foundation, proven efficacy and decades in the business, with TAP’s scrappy workflow automation SaaS solution and innovative mindset. As the most widely used legal management platform in the world, over 1,200 companies and half a million users rely on TeamConnect. By adding the TAP integration, these users can now leverage their legal management solution in ways they never before anticipated.
“The integration of two leading legal technology solutions that are so uniquely complementary to each other will open up unprecedented opportunities for legal departments,” Negro states. “How? By solving the challenges that have kept corporate legal departments from becoming the strategic partners and change agents their companies desperately need.”
Together, these solutions set something even the most conservative lawyers respect – a precedent.