01 December 2021LawtechUK x Deloitte Legal

Capturing Data Maturity of in-house legal teams in collaboration with Deloitte Legal

Continuing our Legal Data Vision, LawtechUK and Deloitte Legal have produced this benchmark report to further help in-house legal teams use their data more effectively.

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In the age of data-driven decision-making, it is essential for legal professionals to leverage data to support their work. A strong legal data ecosystem can help them make better decisions, drive innovation, and create more effective and efficient services. Data represents a £3 billion market opportunity for the industry in productivity gains alone. However, 80% of lawyers say that their organisation does not capture data effectively.

Individual organisations alone cannot unlock the full potential of legal data and navigate the associated ethical, privacy, and security considerations. Only collective action across the legal data ecosystem, from individuals, organisations, government, and regulators, can establish the data assets, processes, standards, and best practices that will ensure the trustworthy use of data to meet society's needs.

LawtechUK’s Shaping the Future of Law Report in 2021 identified the need for a shared purpose on legal data through its cross-sector work programme. LawtechUK tackled this challenge in 2022, launching its Legal Data Vision with the Open Data Institute. The project set out a shared aim for the legal sector to prioritise the responsible use of and access to legal data to drive innovation, uphold trust and deliver outcomes that benefit society.

In 2023, continuing our mission, we set out to address the use and collection of data by in-house legal teams. Together with Deloitte Legal, we have delivered a 'pulse check' report on data maturity models in these teams.

The need for data-driven decision-making in legal services has never been greater. In-house legal teams, in particular, are uniquely positioned to leverage data to support their organisations. They have access to vast amounts of data, from case files to contracts, that can be used to identify trends, mitigate risks, and provide strategic advice. However, many in-house legal teams still struggle to collect, analyse, and apply data effectively.

The scope of the report mirrors the scope of The Legal Data Vision, focusing on legal data within a commercial and operational context, although we remain mindful of the work being undertaken on providing access to public sources of data (such as public court judgments).

Download the full report here.

Key insights:

  1. The surge in technology adoption has created vast banks of data, and the most forward-thinking organisations are developing the skills to harness this opportunity.

  2. Data can help organisations improve decision-making, whether the result is more efficient operations, better compliance, greater risk management, or anticipating client needs, and can give a competitive advantage.

  3. General Counsels are beginning to realise the opportunity of using data, with many teams beginning to track work allocation, transactions, and spend. There is still work to be done in using data to build business cases, inform resourcing and budget, track risk, and predict trends.

  4. Barriers to data usage include the way in-house lawyers traditionally work, technology and training available to legal teams. Providing legal teams with the expertise (either through training or embedding data analysts in legal teams) will be essential to capitalising on the benefits data can offer.

  5. Data-driven thinking creates value for organisations and provides an opportunity for legal departments to demonstrate and enhance their own value to the businesses they serve.

The report includes a data maturity model for in-house legal teams. The model looks at what an archetypical legal department’s data maturity would be at various stages (from “traditional” to one that fully understands and engages with data).

We would like to thank the community of in-house legal professionals who contributed to this report and helped us shape its findings. Securing the Legal Data Vision is a collaborative effort, and this publication constitutes another step in the sector’s journey towards embracing the benefits of better data practices.

Thank you for your interest in the Open Legal Data project.

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