LexisNexis ALM Study Measures Growth and Resistance of Analytics in the Practice and Business of Law

Reposted with permission from Jean O’Grady at Dewey B Strategic

Legal Analytics is changing the practice and business of law. LexisNexis has released its third annual survey. Bringing Analytics into Focus suggests that firms have reached a tipping point in embracing analytics in the business and practice of law with 90% of users reporting that analytics makes them more efficient and more effective. Here is a link to the full press release.

Survey Demographics 77% of the firms listed are listed in the Am Law 200. 70% of the respondents to this survey were attorneys representing over 25 different practice areas.

Librarians Deserve Credit. Since 75% of the responded cite an increase of analytics use at their firms, lawyer awareness of analytics is very high.  In most firms, Library and KM directors have brought in the analytics products and driven the awareness the report suggests that their efforts are paying off. Training and driving up use remains a challenge. LexisNexis’ integration of Lex Machina and Ravel (now Context) content into Lexis Advance is also driving awareness and lowering the “login” bar since lawyers don’t need a special password to see analytics in their research results.

“As the leader in legal analytics, we couldn’t be happier to see more law firms, attorneys and other legal professionals adopting these tools and finding new ways for the technology to add value to their business and profession,” said Sean Fitzpatrick, LexisNexis CEO, North American Research Solutions. “The legal industry’s most groundbreaking, innovative and impactful analytics solutions reside on our flagship Lexis Advance platform, enabling attorneys to do their work more efficiently, provide better client counsel and make more informed business decisions in today’s hyper-competitive environment.”

Use Cases No surprise all of the uses support the competitive needs lawyers as practitioners and rainmakers:

How Law Firms Us Legal Analytics

I have been an early promoter of the value of analytics and insights. I recall the early days of online usage — it took large law firms almost a decade to fully accept online research as delivering workflow efficiencies. Online research was viewed as “optional” for a long time. The current competitive marketplace has accelerated the embrace of analytics because they can position the firm for competitive advantage at even save a firm from humiliating meetings with clients who are armed with an analytics report on the firms litigation history.

How law firms use analytics

Lack of training is still an obstacle.  One of the most revealing charts illustrated the obstackes to adoption. Training was at the top of the list.

Obstacles to Adopting Analytics

Partners are the Most Resistant?

This finding really shocked me. In law firms that have not adopted analytics partners do not expect to be adopting analytics in the next two years!

Don’t plan to implement analytics

As a die hard fan of analytics in law, I am pleased with the progress in driving awareness and adoption. Legal analytics vendors need to continue to enhance transparency into any limitations in data or in the coding of the data to assure that lawyers know what they are looking at.

As the data sets grow the challenges will expand as well. No one can be complacent in the analytics market either buyers or sellers.

Download the full report here.

Talking Tech: The Evolving Market for Company Information

Reposted with permission from AALL Spectrum, Volume 24, Number 3 (January/February 2020), pgs. 31-33

By G. Patrick Flanagan, Research Analyst at BakerHostetler LLP

How information vendors and new technologies are impacting the way law librarians research and gather company information.

Legal information professionals frequently need to research information about  companies. We research adversaries and potential clients. We research industries and companies for academic projects. We investigate the vendors we hire. Technology innovations change the way companies record and publish information about their businesses. In turn, information vendors adapt to changing technology and provide innovative ways to make more information available. This column highlights some of those methods and points out potential future developments. Today, legal researchers are often most familiar with judicial and governmental sources that usually have official and structured publications. Information systems frequently marketed to financial and business professionals, however, often employ a more journalistic approach to corporate research and fact gathering. Understanding the use and benefits of these other approaches and tools is helpful given the ebbs and flows in the market for company information. Continue reading

Law Librarians & The Future of Law Firms

Reposted with permission from AALL Spectrum, Volume 24, Number 2 (November/December 2019), pgs. 23-25.

By Jordan Furlong

Jordan Furlong of Ottawa, Canada, is a legal market analyst, speaker, and consultant who forecasts the impact of legal industry trends on lawyers, legal organizations, and clients. He is the author of Law Is a Buyer’s Market: Building a Client-First Law Firm and writes regularly about the legal profession at law21.ca.

This past summer, I gave the keynote address to the Private Law Librarians & Information Professionals (PLLIP) Special Interest Section Summit X: The Path to 2030, in Washington, DC, during the American Association of Law Libraries Annual Meeting. The
title of the presentation was “New Horizons: How Law Librarians and Legal Information Professionals Can Redefine Law Firms in the 21st Century.” The following is a brief summary of those remarks.

The Legal Landscape
The gradual but unstoppable transformation of the commercial legal marketplace—including new client buying patterns, rapid technological advances, and a host of new providers emboldened by regulatory liberalization—is creating a state of “climate  change” in the market. This poses an immense challenge to law firms, which developed
and flourished in last century’s more sedate competitive climate and whose business model will now have to adapt in response to this change.

Among the most important consequences of this legal climate change is a growing bifurcation of legal work into two broad categories:

  • “commodity” work (routine, repeatable, straightforward, traditionally
    given to associates), and
  • “complex” work (intricate, challenging, high-stakes, traditionally kept by
    partners).

These two types of work have always existed in law firms, of course. But one of the profitability secrets of law firms is that they perform commodity work the same way they perform complex work: sequentially, laboriously, by-the-lawyer-hour. This is the key feature of the law firm leverage model: bill associates’ on-the-job learning efforts on basic tasks and reap the resulting profits.

Now, however, this law firm profitability secret is becoming a handicap. Commodity work is migrating from law firms and moving to more efficient and cost-appropriate platforms, including managed legal services companies and low-cost/offshore centers. These providers are winning this work because they have designed systems and trained
people to carry out these tasks faster, cheaper, and more efficiently than law firms can.

Law firms could keep this work if they were to adjust their workflow, pricing, and profitability approaches; that is, if they would perform commodity work efficiently and systematically, as it should be done. But law firms just aren’t set up to do that, structurally or culturally, and few are even trying. Continue reading

The Power of CI Checklists: Using model competitive intelligence (CI) checklists to plan and complete impactful CI reports

Reposted with permission from AALL Spectrum, Volume 24, Number 2 (November/December 2019), pgs. 48-49.

By Kevin Miles, Manager of Library Services at Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP

We are all familiar with using checklists in our daily lives. Examples can include grocery checklists, to-do checklists, or checklists for planning a trip. Checklists keep us focused on the steps or elements needed to complete a task, and they help us verify that critical information has been collected. Whereas most general checklists usually are not used
to create a report, CI checklists are used to create reports and can be very effective.

CI Checklists Are CI-Specific

Competent CI professionals rely on checklists to plan and complete competitive intelligence reports; CI checklists outline and guide CI reports. The three essential qualities of a CI checklist are that it must be pliableprocedural, and purposeful. Pliable means the checklist can be adjusted; steps can be added or subtracted. Procedural means the checklist is built step-by-step within an order, forming touchpoints for your report. Purposeful means the report is not a data dump, but rather, it answers specific questions. You may have to ask the attorney three different questions to determine what the attorney wants to know, how the attorney will use the information, and what the deadline is for the report.

Model CI Checklists

CI reports range from background reports about officers and directors, companies, and industries, to websites, litigation, transactions, and other activities.  As we discussed in the September/October 2019 issue of AALL Spectrum, CI checklist questions can be grouped into six categories:

1. People
2. Company
3. Litigation Parties
4. Intellectual Property
5. Industry
6. Other Activities

Let’s look at a few model CI checklists, which have been condensed here for purposes of illustration. Copies of the full versions are available at the bottom of this post. Feel free to adapt or modify them to suit your purposes.

People Checklist

  • Name of person
  • Address
  • Telephone
  • Email
  • Social media presence
  • Workplace
  • Education
  • Additional business relationships
  • Who knows whom

Company Checklist

  • Company name
  • Company address
  • Industry
  • Officers & directors
  • Social media
  • Mergers & acquisitions activity
  • Subsidiaries
  • Law firm contacts within the company
  • Locations in the world

Litigation Parties Checklist

  • Plaintiff/Defendant ratios
  • How many times in litigation?
  • Win/Loss/Settle ratios?
  • Which courts have they appeared in?
  • Which judges have adjudicated this company?
    • By name
    • By percentage
  • Which law firms/attorneys represent them:
    • By name
    • By percentage

Intellectual Property Checklist

  • What is the composition of the IP portfolio?
  • How many patents are:
    • Granted
    • Licensed
    • Sold
    • Expired
    • About to expire

Industry Checklist

  • What is the overview of the industry?
  • What are the names of the companies in the main industry?
  • How do they rank in terms of size?
    • Number of employees
    • Revenue
    • Profit

Other Activities Checklist

  • Is the company involved in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) activities?
  • What are their political contributions?
  • Is the company on a watch list?
  • What are their real estate holdings?
  • What are their cybersecurity policies?
  • Have there been data breaches?
  • What information can be gathered from the website?
  • Are there any Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) violations?

Now, Begin

Developing a CI checklist is the first step to gathering information for the CI report.
Checklists create consistency for your reports and ensure that everything that needs to be included is incorporated.

READ

Practical Competitive Intelligence “Breaking Down the Basics,” in the September/
October 2019 issue of AALL Spectrum at bit.ly/SO19Miles.

COMING SOON

AALL Competitive Intelligence Strategies & Analysis, May 2020. Details will be  forthcoming.

AALL2go EXTRA

Listen to the 2016 webinar “Advanced Competitive Intelligence: Best Practices
in Conducting CI Research,” at bit.lyAALL2go0616CI.

Checklists in Word

People Checklist

Company Checklist

Litigation Parties Checklist

Intellectual Property Checklist

Industry Checklist

Other Activities Checklist

 

Brainstorming Solutions to our Competitive Intelligence Pain Points

By Delia Montesinos, Senior Competitive Intelligence Analyst at Ropes & Gray

The content of this post was originally published in the Northern California Association of Law Libraries newsletter.  Content is republished with permission.

Competitive Intelligence (“CI”) is my daily bread and as much as I love it, it can drive me to the most bitter of tears. There are so many pain points! Putting together a report requires too many tools; turnaround times are sometimes unreasonable; the amount of information can drive one to distraction or, worse, be too little to be viable. To top it off, I have to deal with my uber-obsession about delivering the most kickass, ‘trust-me-there’s-no-more-info-to-be-found’ work product—an obsession largely driven by the fact I generate these reports with little or no context: I have no clue how my work fits into the bigger picture. Therefore, when they asked me to present at the Northern California Association of Law Libraries (NOCALL) Spring Institute, I immediately chose CI pain points.

What I (selfishly) hoped to accomplish was learning new tips and tricks from my peers. What I discovered is that, despite CI work being more prevalent, few law firms have dedicated CI teams like mine. Additionally, many librarians work CI on an irregular basis: when I posed the question at the roundtable, nearly 90% of participants said they work CI less than 5% of the time. For them, each CI request has the added challenge of remembering which tool has what info or, worse, how to find info when you have no tools at all. As a result, I have begun to pen a newsletter column to demystify CI work for my NOCALL peers. What follows is an abbreviated version of two of my columns, updated with the resources we brainstormed at the Spring Institute. Continue reading