We’ll be at CLOC Institute London 2019 this year, and if you’re in attendance, too? Let’s meet up and compare notes. There’s a lot to look forward to.
First of all, we’re proud to be a sponsor of this second annual CLOC London Institute. As a professional association, CLOC stands apart for a number of reasons, starting with the fact it serves people who are blazing paths in a new and rapidly evolving segment of the legal industry. It’s a pioneering era, and the excitement and growth we’ve watched happen within both CLOC and Legal Operations over the past few years have been amazing.
That translates into a community that’s committed to collaboration, education, and building a strong foundation for their discipline. This results in an openness to innovation and experimentation that’s benefitted the entire group. It’s one reason 95% of attendees surveyed in 2018 planned to attend the 2019 Institute.
Some of what we expect to see at CLOC Institute London will validate the recent predictions we and others laid out about the evolution of Legal Operations in 2019. But at an event like this, you can never tell: there’s always a chance of unexpected surprises. At the very least, it’s an opportunity to make new connections and new friends who share the same forward-looking focus and innovative spirit as everyone else on hand.
So what do we expect to see at CLOC Institute London?
1 • A bigger headcount, because Legal Operations is growing globally
It’s been a dizzying year since CLOC held its first Institute event in London. There are now regional CLOC groups spread all across the globe, with a new one being added almost weekly, growing in lockstep with Legal Ops.
As Mitratech’s Barny Brummel pointed out when discussing the growth of Legal Ops in Australia and other Pacific markets? Many of the factors driving legal services are global ones, not regional or national.
So it’s understandable that in the U.K. and Europe, Legal Operations may see a surge in adoption similar to what U.S. corporate legal departments have experienced. Last year’s attendance at CLOC Institute London was around 300; nobody should be surprised if we see a substantial bump in attendance for 2019.
2 • Legal Rising is advancing (thanks to Legal Ops and legal tech)
As Legal Operations makes more inroads into more in-house legal departments – increasingly among mid- to small-sized companies, too, not just larger enterprises – we’re sure it’s empowering another movement that was succinctly summed up by Jason Parkman:
“Legal Rising” is a phrase we’ve used to describe the expanding leadership role being taken by legal departments around the world, as they look to embrace and accelerate change, becoming innovators within their organizations.
We expect to hear this chatted up in London, because it’s a sea-change in both the roles and attitudes of legal departments. External forces are partly behind it, as companies are faced with heightened risks and regulation. This makes them require Legal to be a more proactive and engaged partner in everyday operations.
Visionary legal leaders are also driving this shift, however, as they see new opportunities to gain a seat at the leadership table. Legal Operations hires and technologies for making in-house legal more efficient, agile, and responsive are central to that.
For this movement to take hold across a wider range of firms, though, there’s a key question to answer: How can technology make Legal Rising possible for legal staffs of all shapes and sizes, even across regions as diverse as EMEA, APAC, and others?
3 • Visionary insights will (again) be on display
Several sessions will supply valuable insights on how to make a present-day Legal Ops function more efficient and impactful. Others, meanwhile, will give a clear-eyed vision of the future, such as Day 1’s The Evolving Role of The Corporate Legal Department & The Implications for Legal Operations Teams, presented by Steve Harmon of Cisco and Mary Shen O’Carroll of Google.
The forward visions you see presented at CLOC Institute conferences aren’t blue-sky renditions of “what-ifs,” but are pragmatic and grounded. They provide an entire profession with a roadmap for driving transformation in realistic ways by dealing with present or impending needs, and by forecasting longer-term changes (and opportunities) before they arrive.
4 • There will be big announcements
This is encoded in the DNA of a conference like CLOC Institute London. The connections forged at these events result in alliances, acquisitions, innovations, and more, and the logical place to announce those to the Legal Ops community? At a CLOC event, naturally.
That’s why, at CLOC Institute 2018 in Las Vegas last year, we announced Mitratech’s acquisition of ThinkSmart – a connection that happened thanks to CLOC.
If you want a central clearinghouse for industry breakthroughs, demos, product buzz, hot gossip and more, it’s the place to be. You may encounter a certain amount of, well, hyperbole as you stroll the Exhibit Hall, of course. But the onstage content and demos at a CLOC Institute are as good as gold, offered up in that spirit of collaboration and education I mentioned.
It’s one of the reasons we’ve always felt that CLOC Institutes are the preeminent Legal Operations conferences, bar none.
5 • We’ll have news to share, too – especially for the UK
We’ll be doing our part in making sure CLOC Institute London lives up to every Institute’s track record for both A) showcasing innovation and B) highlighting big announcements.
Mitratech will have compelling news to share on a number of fronts. Some of it will relate to the growth and success of Legal Operations and the way legal technology is penetrating more legal departments in more markets worldwide. But we’ll also have announcements that will demonstrate how we’re committed to being a driver of that evolution in more countries, for more legal departments.
Remember how I asked if there’s a way to help legal teams of all shapes and sizes make Legal Rising a reality? This year in London, we’ll have an answer.
So swing by Booth #17 in the Exhibit Hall, or arrange a personal consultation if you have a legal tech challenge you’d like to discuss. We’ll be happy to see you!