Legal operations, or “Legal Ops,” comprises all the business activities, processes, and people that enable an organization’s legal department to focus on core competencies. Today, the role of Legal Ops teams has evolved from traditional core functions—like dealing with risk management or cost reductions—to playing an essential strategic role in an organization’s overall success.
As Legal Ops teams bring a more holistic lens to streamlining legal-related processes and workflows company-wide, they’re increasingly turning to technology like no-code automation.
Automation technology gives organizations a way to do more with less. By automating processes related to the legal department, stakeholders are freed from the time-consuming, repetitious, and traditionally manual elements of their work—and are able to route matters outside the scope of their own work to the right people.
In other words, by automating these crucial (yet tedious) processes through software, the legal team can better focus on their areas of expertise.
Using automation successfully is not entirely simple or easy, though. You need the right automation platform, along with the right implementation strategy. Here are the initial steps that your Legal Ops team should take when getting started with automation.
Before you begin looking toward introducing process automation to your legal operations, assess your current processes. Consider what tasks are currently working well and what tasks need an automated solution.
Here are some questions that can guide you when evaluating the quality of your current systems, costs, and risks.
- Which processes or systems are expensive to the organization?
- Which processes are high-risk and prone to human error if handled manually?
- What processes are repetitive, laborious or time-consuming—taking time away from higher-value work?
- What tasks are time-sensitive and require quick turnarounds?
For example, contract management is a good place to start. If you find that contract management is a frequent bottleneck, consider automating contract creation, reviewing, signing, and risk assessing to limit errors. It can result in quicker turnarounds and greater accuracy.
After evaluating the elements in your legal organization that are in need of automating, it’s important to determine what specific goals your legal organization wishes to accomplish with automation.
By setting specific goals, you’ll be able to define what a successful process looks like in your organization and you can track success and monitor the benefits of the automated processes so that you can best determine new opportunities.
This leads to the next step in your automation strategy: the formal assessment process.
Begin outlining a formal assessment process that is designed to identify technology gaps and potential risks. By establishing a formal process for assessing your processes, you’ll always be informed on the progress and performance of your organization, allowing for total visibility.
Assessments should be conducted systematically and regularly, with a full reassessment conducted at least biannually. That ensures resources will be aligned with the strategic needs of the organization at all times.
Once you have determined potential processes to automate, established the goals you want to achieve, and outlined a process for continual assessments, you’ll then need to find an automation platform that aligns with your conclusions.
While the benefits of legal process automation sound promising, not all platforms are created the same. It’s crucial that you evaluate which tools will offer the most ROI for your organization.
Tonkean, for example, allows you to define and internally publish KPIs so you can monitor your initial goals and track performance across the entire organization. That total visibility ensures you’re able to measure the outcomes of your automation investments.
Additionally, you’ll want a platform that is easy to learn and manage for all internal stakeholders and offers a highly qualified support team and ample learning resources.
Don’t overlook a key final step: communication. You’ll need to ensure that everyone within your organization understands the value your technological implementations bring and understands how processes are now handled.
Open communication helps ensure that all the legal matters your organization handles are mapped onto its automation strategy. Additionally, make sure information, data, and resources are available and easy to find.
With these steps in place, you’ll begin to reap the benefits of automation on not just your legal team, but the entire organization. Visit the Tonkean Legal Ops handbook for more valuable information on how to level up your legal operations.short url: