Author Archives: Riverview Law

January 2017 Market Horizon Scanning Report

Happy New Year and welcome to the January 2017 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report.

As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question!

So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of December 2016 and previous months.

Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

December 2016

Building a Sustainable Legal AI Solution from the Inside Out
01 January 2017
http://rv-l.com/2hTxbW7
SCL – The IT Law Community
Lord Chief Justice looks ahead to AI predicting case outcomes and IT taking over some of lawyers’ work
23 December 2016
http://rv-l.com/2jaBEWc
Legal Futures

2016: Legal tech grows up
22 December 2016
http://rv-l.com/2hTwYm0
Legal IT Insider

Is AI Placing Legal at the Forefront of Industries?
09 December 2016
http://rv-l.com/2hRlH2p
LegalTech News

Artificial Intelligence: Helping Lawyers More Than You Know
07 December 2016
http://rv-l.com/2h9a48c
Legal Tech News

Unleashing the True Potential of AI – Building the Exponential Law Firm
21 November 2016
http://rv-l.com/2hj5Y0d
The Barrister

December 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the December 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report.

As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question!

So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of November 2016 and previous months.

November 2016

EY’s Richard Goold: Legal Industry Faces Unprecedented Tech Change
Artificial Lawyer
http://rv-l.com/2gKJvZi
21 November 2016

Lawyers must learn to embrace technology
Financial Times
http://rv-l.com/2gKFMam
20 November 2016

Vodafone Global Enterprise overhauls legal team and ushers in new technology
Legal Week
http://rv-l.com/2fEcVYY
18 November 2016

What’s Driving Legal Tech Outsourcing?
Legal Tech News
http://rv-l.com/2gcpt6m
17 November 2016

Law In The Age Of The New Organization
Legal Mosaic 
http://rv-l.com/2fPCxgV
03 November 2016

How legal technology can power in-house teams into the future
Legal Week Law
http://rv-l.com/2gKoDRX
09 September 2016

Riverview Law awarded ISO/IEC 27001:2013 accreditation

Riverview Law has been awarded the ISO/IEC 27001:2013 Information Security Management accreditation by BSI. ISO/IEC 27001:2013 is an internationally recognised best practice framework for an information security management system (ISMS). The certification provides independent assurance that robust information security processes are in place to safeguard customer data within a business. The accreditation process considers all business operations, not just technology, providing the business with a complete approach to information security encompassing people, processes and technology. Riverview Law’s Operations Director, Katy Robson, says: “We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded ISO/IEC 27001:2013 accreditation. By being awarded ISO/IEC 27001:2013 our global customers have an internationally recognised stamp of approval that the security of their confidential data and information is of the highest priority to Riverview Law.” The awarding of the ISO/IEC 27001:2013 accreditation comes at an exciting time for Riverview Law as the company recently won the ‘Innovation in Technology and Data Analytics’ award at The Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Europe Awards 2016, ‘Most innovative client-facing technology’ at The Lawyer Business Leadership Awards 2016 and four of thirteen categories in the Lex 100 2016/17 Trainee Survey. The company continues to recruit heavily in the North West. For further information on joining Riverview Law visit www.riverviewlaw.com/join-us. For more information on ISO/IEC 27001:2013 and what the accreditation means click here.

November 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the November 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of October 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

October 2016

PwC Law Firms Survey 2016: “Law firms can’t ignore the need to invest heavily in technology” Legal IT Insider http://rv-l.com/2f4LKTQ 24 October 2016 The best law firm tech to understand your clients’ needs The Lawyer http://rv-l.com/2eruhU3  17 October 2016

The next legal frontier? Isn’t it obvious? … Chrissie Lightfoot http://rv-l.com/2f902l4 15 October 2016

Artificial intelligence disrupting the business of law Financial Times http://rv-l.com/2eyX35L 05 October 2016

Is the Legal Operating Model About to Crash? Corporate Counsel http://rv-l.com/2dDfkkK 05 October 2016 In-house: resourcing revolution The Law Society Gazette http://rv-l.com/2f0cZi5 03 October 2016

October 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the October 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of September 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

September 2016

FT Innovative Lawyers Award: Riverview wins innovation in technology and data analytics Legal IT Insider http://rv-l.com/2dwcD3A 06 October 2016

No, lawyers don’t need to become coders Legal Tech http://rv-l.com/2d27Kkj 28 September 2016

The Coming of Age of Legal Technology Stanford Law School http://rv-l.com/2eil3xw 26 September 2016

The next big thing in legal: carthorse to racehorse artificial intelligence Robotics Law Journal http://rv-l.com/2einyQk 16 September 2016

Alternative Fee Arrangements: a Comprehensive Guide for Law Firms LegalTrek http://rv-l.com/2dJ32GM 16 September 2016

How Artificial Intelligence Will Transform The Delivery Of Legal Services Legal Mosaic http://rv-l.com/2d26SfD 06 September 2016

5 Reasons Why Legal Ops Rules Corporate Counsel http://rv-l.com/2dZ0Ich 06 September 2016

Riverview Law CEO named in FT top 10 tech trailblazers in legal practice

Our CEO, Karl Chapman, was named in the top 10 tech trailblazers in legal practice by the Financial Times at the FT European Innovative Lawyer Awards 2016. The top 10 consisted of: Winner: Charlotte Stalin, Simmons & Simmons Bernard O’Connor, Nctm Studio Legale David Wakeling, Allen & Overy Akber Datoo, D2 Legal Technology Karl Chapman, Riverview Law Jeroen Zweers, Kennedy Van der Laan Magda Cocco, VdA Mark Nicolaides, Latham & Watkins Keith Schilling, Schillings Pamela Thompson, Eversheds For the full article about those shortlisted click here.

Winner of ‘Innovation in Technology and Data Analytics’ at the FT European Innovative Lawyer Awards 2016

We are absolutely delighted to have won the ‘Innovation in Technology and Data Analytics’ category at the FT European Innovative Lawyer Awards 2016. The category shortlist consisted of: Allen & Overy Bates Wells Braithwaite Berwin Leighton Paisner DWF Mishcon de Reya Pinsent Masons Riverview Law Simmons & Simmons Taylor Vinters For the full shortlist scoring breakdown click here.

Winner in 4 Lex 100 Trainee Survey categories

We are delighted to have won in four of thirteen categories in the The Lex 100’s annual trainee survey. This year the survey gathered over 3,000 anonymous responses from trainees at 173 law firms across the UK. In evaluating their firms the trainees assigned scores according to 13 different criteria of trainee life. These are job satisfaction, living up to expectations, work quality, client contact, stress levels, work/life balance, friendliness, social life, vacation scheme, confidence of being kept on, remuneration and diversity and international secondments. We won in the following categories: Low stress levels Work/life balance Friendliness Confidence of being kept on Lex Badges for website For full details on how Riverview Law scored click here.

Winner of ‘Most innovative client-facing technology’ at The Lawyer Business Leadership Awards 2016

We are thrilled to have won the ‘Most innovative client-facing technology’ category at The Lawyer Business Leadership Awards 2016. The category shortlist consisted of: Addleshaw Goddard K&L Gates Kennedy Van der Laan Paul Hastings Pinsent Masons Reed Smith Riverview Law Taylor Wessing Further information about why Riverview Law won the award can be found here.

Robert Farina appointed Chief Executive Officer of Kim Technologies

Kim Technologies, a next generation provider of software that applies artificial intelligence capabilities to knowledge automation and which powers the Riverview Law Virtual Assistants has appointed Robert (Bob) Farina as its Chief Executive Officer. Bob is a highly experienced CEO of Private Equity and Venture Capital backed US technology companies. He has over 30 years’ experience in leading start-ups, turnarounds and high growth enterprises in the software-as-a-service (“SaaS”), business process outsourcing, professional services, payment processing and packaged software business segments. His previous CEO and VP roles include JK Group Inc (2012-2016), Cybershift Inc (2002-2011) and USInternetworking (2000-2002). The appointment of Bob marks the next step in the development of Kim Technologies as the team and technology grow and evolve at a rapid pace. Bob will be based in the New Jersey office. Karl Chapman, Chairman of Kim’s Board and CEO of Riverview Law the company that is the lead investor in Kim Technologies, said: ‘We are absolutely delighted to appoint Bob as CEO of Kim Technologies. We have had many conversations and visits with Bob over the last few months. Bob had various other CEO opportunities following the sale of his last company, so it is a strong endorsement of the prospects for Kim Technologies that he joins as CEO.’ ‘This comes at a key stage in the development of Kim Technologies as we move onto the next phase in its evolution. This phase includes refining the Kim business model, market positioning and to-market strategy, continuing to evolve the Kim platform/products further and winning more customers and building a global sales pipeline.’ Bob Farina said ‘Kim has a unique capability to transform how work gets done by knowledge workers around the world which, in turn, adds substantial value to their organizations.  I am excited to be working with a very talented team to build Kim into a global brand with a core value being to have strong, long-term partnerships with our clients.’ The Kim technology is applicable across all sectors and functions, in any country. To learn more about Kim Technologies please visit the website www.ask.kim.

September 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the September 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of August 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

August 2016

Challenges loom as partners resist change Lawyers Weekly http://rv-l.com/2c6HfHH 31 August 2016

Successful firms of the future “will collaborate” with non-lawyers and start-up tech companies Legal Futures  http://rv-l.com/2bVzC5i 19 August 2016 Why is there a disconnect between what firms are doing and what clients want? ABA Journal http://rv-l.com/2bHHQlg 18 August 2016

Law Firms vs NewLaw: How to face the future of legal services? LegalTrek http://rv-l.com/2bJGLYC 16 August 2016

This Week in AI, The Law Firm Approach, The Displacement Decade, and Modern Machine Learning Legal Tech News http://rv-l.com/2cvwcLu 15 August 2016

The endangered partner Law 21 http://rv-l.com/2ca6Gs1 28 July 2016

As Legal Departments Do More Work, Tech Adoption Becomes Critical Legal Tech News http://rv-l.com/2bZ6XRd 08 March 2016

New Manchester office as Riverview Law eyes major recruitment drive and awards additional training contracts

Following new contract wins and the expansion of work with existing customers, Riverview Law is relocating to larger premises in Manchester on 1 September to accommodate its growing team. The move to Delta House in Wythenshawe comes 17 months after the business first opened in Manchester. This larger space, combined with the Wirral Service Delivery Centre, will enable Riverview to recruit up to 60 more team members, including solicitors, paralegals, client managers and data analysts, over the next year, and provide an option to take additional space in line with future business growth. Previously, 20 staff worked from the Manchester office with each working between the city and the business’s headquarters in the Wirral. The new state-of-the-art office provides Riverview Law with enhanced multi-site disaster recovery and IT resilience, meaning that it can provide client services in an ever more secure business environment. Riverview Law has recently awarded two training contracts to existing members of the team to join its two-year solicitor training programme, which it first launched in September 2014. Susannah Brumby and Harriet Clayton will commence their training contracts this October. The first cohort of seven trainees finishes in September, with the second group of six trainees now almost a year into their training. Riverview Law’s Operations Director, Katy Robson, says: “Our continued growth is due to increasing customer demand and Manchester provides an excellent talent pool to meet it. Increasingly, our corporate customers demand a higher standard of IT and data security and we must be able to meet and exceed this expectation to grow existing contracts and win new business. Our new office enables us to provide this important reassurance. “We are also thrilled to have offered two more training contracts this year and to have our first trainee solicitors qualifying in September. Since we launched our trainee programme in 2014 we have awarded 15 trainee contracts and are committed to continuing the development and progression of all Riverview Law team members.” Riverview Law has three UK locations – London, Manchester and Wirral – and two US locations – New Jersey and New York. Further details about existing vacancies can be found on the Riverview Law website Join Us.

August 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the August 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of July 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

July 2016

Guest post – Legal innovation: Five takeaways from the Legal Horizons Conference Legal IT Insider http://rv-l.com/2aIuse8 01 August 2016 But What About Lawyers? A Q&A With Richard Susskind on AI in Law LegalTech News http://rv-l.com/2au394q 25 July 2016 A Call to Legal Tech: AI is Here Law.com http://rv-l.com/29XVITy 20 July 2016

Top 3 Trends to Watch in Legal Outsourcing The Huffington Post http://rv-l.com/2aunN4l 07 July 2016

Behind the Hype: AI’s Deployment, and What it Means for the Legal Market LegalTech News http://rv-l.com/2ahnwXu 06 July 2016 Firms must embrace AI or risk being left behind Raconteur http://rv-l.com/2ahOJZO 29 June 2016

Legal Tech Will Change the Business of Law: Valuable Opinions and Thoughts LegalTrek http://rv-l.com/2aBlRIG 15 March 2016

Riverview Law launch first Spanish Virtual Assistants powered by Kim

Following the successful launch of its first Virtual Assistants in April this year Riverview Law has today rolled out its first Spanish Virtual Assistants (http://rv-l.com/2aqmmrs) powered by the Kim technology platform (www.ask.kim). All the Riverview Law Virtual Assistants are aimed at helping in-house legal teams, globally, make quicker and better decisions. These Assistants are quick and easy to launch and cost-effective. Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law, says: “We’re thrilled to be launching our first two Spanish process Assistants built on the Kim platform. Since our UK launch we have had a huge amount of interest from all over the world and the natural next step was to launch other language versions. Over the coming months we will continue to launch new Virtual Assistants in various different languages.” For full pricing of all the Riverview Law Virtual Assistants and their upgrade options please visit http://rv-l.com/2aqmmrs.

July 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the July 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of June 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

June 2016

Robot power strengthens legal services Financial Times http://rv-l.com/28Ot6jS 21 June 2016 New report uncovers growing dissatisfaction with traditional law firms The Global Legal Post http://rv-l.com/29kJtni 21 June 2016

The NewLaw tipping point Eric Chin http://rv-l.com/29mCj08 16 June 2016

Corporate Legal Departments Are Voting With Their Feet—And Then Some Legal Mosaic http://rv-l.com/29r5lNM 13 June 2016

Law in Action: Artificial Intelligence and the Law Podcast: BBC Radio 4 http://rv-l.com/1VKm8N5 09 Jun 2016

What Makes Uber Tick, and What Lawyers Can Learn from It Lawyerist.com http://rv-l.com/2608ok6 08 June 2016

The ‘Quiet Crisis’ In Legal And How to Fix It – Eddie Hartman’s Vision Above the Law http://rv-l.com/29mMSA4 08 June 2016

Unlikely Legal Tech Allies Come Together to Standardize Legal Operations Legaltech news http://rv-l.com/29r5dO6 02 June 2016

June 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the June 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of May 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

May 2016

What is the next Big Thing for Big Law? Solicitors Journal http://rv-l.com/1sqCAq4 31 May 2016 ‘Triage’, one of the most powerful words in the In-house legal dictionary Riverview Law http://rv-l.com/1VhQxC8 25 May 2016 Legal firms unleash office automatons The FT http://rv-l.com/1O6yXQb 16 May 2016 How AI And Crowdsourcing Are Remaking The Legal Profession Fast Company http://rv-l.com/1Y4f7XJ 11 May 2016

Letter from London Adam Smith Esq. http://rv-l.com/25Cyhd2 07 May 2016

Susskind: ‘you have five years to reinvent the legal profession’ The Law Society Gazette http://rv-l.com/1rCUcyD 27 April 2016

The re-emergence of the Big 4 in law Thomson Reuters http://rv-l.com/22zNBli 27 April 2016 Technology is ‘breathtakingly positive,’ says writer Monica Bay (podcast) ABA Journal http://rv-l.com/20V7aTL 20 April 2016

‘Triage’, one of the most powerful words in the In-house legal dictionary

Capturing foundational data that helps improve performance, evolve the legal operating model and make the function AI ready

 1. Introduction

We all know how crucial triage is in a medical environment. Intuitively we know it makes sense to ensure that the most critical cases are seen quickly and efficiently. Most business functions have applied triage based processes for years, decades. Sales to direct the right opportunities to the most relevant sales people. HR to allocate the appropriate resource to a particular case. IT to direct enquires to the right technician. This should be no surprise. In French ‘triage’ literally means to sort or to categorise. What function would not want to sort and categorise its incoming work to ensure that it is handled by the right person, at the right time and at the right price?

2. The power of triage

We used triage in the recruitment company we set-up in 1989 and ran until 1999 (www.spring.com). We use it in AdviserPlus, the HR managed service business we founded in 2000. We use it extensively in Riverview Law. When we deliver managed services to our customers it is really important that we know:

  • Who the instruction came from
  • What business unit they are in
  • What the work type is
  • What the urgency of the work is
  • Whether the instruction is complete
  • When we received the instruction
  • Who we allocated it to (Riverview Law, In-house team or third party legal provider?)
  • What its current status is
  • How long each stage of the work took … etc

This is the foundational data layer upon which all our real time and trend data is built. We cannot run our business effectively, or constantly improve our services to customers, reduce costs and improve quality without the data and insights it provides (see Appendix A). This is why ‘triage’ is one the most powerful words in the In-house dictionary. It is the foundational layer that drives not only a game-changing data strategy but the entire legal operating model; because it helps determine where work is coming from, what work should be done by whom and whether it should be done internally or externally. Given how easy it is to implement an effective instruction management and triage process (www.virtualassistants.global) it is surprising how few In-house teams have the systems (not spreadsheets!) and real-time dashboards in place to cover this key part of the legal support process. The data it provides helps to allocate work effectively and answer what, in reality, are pretty fundamental questions; how many matters do we have live today, who is handling them, what is their status …? These answers should be readily available. In this context legal is no different from any other function in a business. If I ask a Finance Director equivalent questions they can answer immediately; what is our net cash position, what is the rolling three month profit forecast and how does it compare with budget, how is our capital expenditure tracking against forecast …? If I ask a Sales Director what the sales pipeline looks like they can show me the number of opportunities in the pipeline, who is handing them and what the status is.

3. The direct and indirect benefits of triage

A well-constructed instruction management and triage process has many benefits: 1. Consistent and easy to use gateway to Legal For both users of In-house legal services (the business) and legal team members, a well-constructed triage process makes life easier. For lawyers it provides consistency, complete instructions and it helps manage the influx of work. For business users, who are used to working in this way with other functions, it provides a quick and easy gateway through which to access legal support. Whenever we deploy our Virtual Assistants (virtualassistants.global) invariably the In-house legal team response is the same – ‘why didn’t we do this before?’ The business response is usually, ‘about time’.


2. The right people doing the right work Triage makes sure that the right work is undertaken by the right people, at the right time and at the right price. Because triage captures the data automatically In-house departments soon start re-allocating work. It is amazing how often the data highlights experienced In-house team members working on matters that are mid or low complexity while work they could/should be doing is being sent to expensive external law firms. By allocating the work properly, In-house morale increases because the team is working on more challenging matters. Net costs reduce because expensive, hourly billing, third party law firms are replaced by a combination of In-house team members and fixed priced managed services providers like Riverview Law handling the volume day-to-day work.


3. Resource management and planning In-house legal leaders often share with us their frustration about being unable to make the internal business case for more team members. They may or may not need more people. Whether they do or do not, the real-time and trend data that instruction management and triage provides is exactly the information needed to make a detailed analysis so that an evidence based case can be established. We have seen In-house use our data to change the mix of work they do. This has either avoided the need for more people or, typically, reduce the actual number of new team members required.


4. Creating a Target Operating Model (TOM) There is, rightly, a lot of talk across the In-house community about evolving legal operating models and the need to make decisions within a strategic framework rather than just fire-fighting and implementing tactical solutions. This was a key theme at the excellent Corporate Legal Operations Conference in San Francisco: ‘Something’s Happening’ http://rv-l.com/CLOCblog. Legal leaders recognise that they need a target operating model that they can work towards. Yes, the TOM evolves over time. It should. But there needs to be a broad direction of travel and a plan. One of the key inputs into establishing a TOM is an understanding of the work the function is handling. Which brings us all the way back to the power of instruction management and triage.


5. The foundational layer for a legal data strategy The potential impact that Artificial Intelligence (AI) will have on markets, business models and company functions (sales, HR, legal …) is covered daily in the media. The impact is unknown. However, irrespective of the potential of AI, it is clear that machine learning, analytics and smart assistants are driving change now. Indeed, many of these tools are AI enablers. But, to use existing technology effectively, let alone AI, it is critical that In-house legal has a clear data strategy. A clear understanding of what core data it should routinely and accurately collect from its internal and external teams (see Appendix B). Only with this in place will a function be AI ready. At the core of any legal data strategy is instruction management and triage because it is the start of the entire process.


6. Management of third party law firms One of the most effective ways to manage third party legal providers is to have accurate and transparent performance and quality data. With the right data an In-house team can move work, quickly, to the best internal and/or external providers. The diagram below reflects the model we recommend when In-house deploy our Instruction and Triage and other Virtual Assistants (many customers select Riverview Law as one of their managed service providers): Triage image

4. Law firms beware

We have never seen an In-house function that is not busy. But are its team members working on the right matters? Is the right work being done In-house and the right work being sent externally? Is the function being smart rather than just busy? Instruction management and triage provide an easy to deploy answer. An answer which also makes the function technology and AI enabled because of the foundational data layer it automatically creates. And law firms should beware. Triage does not just help internal In-house effectiveness. Once In-house has mastered triage it will totally transform its relationship with external provides of legal services because it drives transparency. In-house will know what work it has sent to a firm, when it sent it, and how long the firm took to do it when compared with internal and/or competitor law firms. When this inevitable shift happens, the legal providers that can prove their efficiency and effectiveness with transparent and tangible measures, such as quality, speed, proactivity and cost, will win out over their more opaque traditional counterparts. This is a world that we at Riverview look forward to – bring it on! Karl Chapman Chief Executive Riverview Law Download full white paper here

Something’s Happening

CLOC Institute, San Francisco, 2-4 May 2016 The first album I ever bought was ‘Frampton Comes Alive’. The lyrics to one of the many great tracks on that album, ‘Something’s Happening’, include the lines: You know it’s alright something’s happening Hold tight it might be lightning Turn up the lights I feel like dancing Can’t sleep at night my heart keeps missing a beat Well, I didn’t see lightning at CLOC 2016 (www.cloc.org). But something is definitely happening. Most unexpectedly given that it was a legal conference, I actually did feel like dancing at the ‘Big Thinkers’ session on the last day (see the Tweets on 5 May at #CLOC2016 and the comments from Ralph Baxter, Mark Ross and the rest of the excellent, if very large, panel!). For the record, and I am sure to the eternal delight of my daughters, I resisted the temptation to dance (“you’re soooo embarrassing”). Equally surprising – IT WAS A LEGAL CONFERENCE – although it’s past midnight there is absolutely no chance that I’ll be sleeping any time soon. This has little to do with jet lag and more to do with my mind still buzzing, taking in the impact of the last three days. Not even the best bottle of Californian Pinot Noir will knock me out; now there’s a thought … Until the CLOC Institute, the best legal conference I’d been to was Codex 2015 at Stanford University (Walking with the new legal giants – http://rv-l.com/1bZJxFW). Well, Codex 2016, take note. The bar has been raised. CLOC 2016 caught and contributed to a mood, to a trend. Ignoring the excellent insights from the stage and floor contributors (there are just too many to recount), the key themes included: • The Rise of Legal Operations: As Pat Lamb observed, participants will have left the conference with increasing confidence in and validation of the importance of the Legal Operations role in the legal function of the future. The importance of this cannot be overstated. This confidence, but not over-confidence, is a critical ingredient if change is to happen; • Target Operating Model (TOM): There was, rightly, a lot of talk about evolving legal operating models and the need to make decisions within a strategic framework rather than just fire-fighting and implementing tactical solutions. Legal functions need a target operating model they can work towards. Operating models evolve, as they should, but there needs to be a broad direction of travel and a plan; • Don’t Try and Boil the Ocean: In-house teams need to just start and do something; it’s a journey. But, in the context of TOM, incremental steps should be taken that deliver early wins and create confidence. There is no greater set-back than the failure of a grand plan. Much better, as Jeff Carr would say, to ‘stretch, step and then leap’; • Data Strategy / Transparency: Accompanying TOM is the need for every legal function to have a data strategy; what data do you want to capture? Data is both a friend and a shield. It provides the information that ensures that the right work is done by the right people in the right place at the right price, whether the work is undertaken internally or externally. It allows in-house teams to control their own destiny rather than have change imposed on them because they didn’t have even the most basic information (how many matters do we have, where did they come from (individual and business), what are the work types, when did we receive them, who did we allocate them to, how long is the work taking, how much did it cost, what was the outcome …Instruction and Triage Assistant: http://rv-l.com/1SzVFfQ); • Accessible Tech: Workflows and data capture processes can now be automated increasingly quickly and cost-effectively. The technology and the cost is no longer the barrier it was (Virtual Assistants: http://rv-l.com/Virtual_Assistants). The question for in-house teams is now ‘why aren’t we doing this?’; and • Customer Empowerment: It is OK to be a demanding but fair and collaborative customer. Law firm costs and overheads are their challenge not in-house’s. In-house wants value. Law firms need to build delivery models that enable them to provide this value and be profitable at the same time. As Ron Dolin pointed out, if law firms won’t change, stop enabling them. Use alternative providers so that you have hard data against which to benchmark your existing law firms. This direction of travel is encouraging and desirable. As recent entrants to the legal market one of the biggest initial surprises to us was seeing customers not act as customers. As customers, GCs, Heads of Legal and lawyers have always had the ability to change the behaviour of law firms and therefore the legal market. But, with some exceptions, they haven’t, yet, and the overwhelming majority of law firms have no incentive to do so; why would they, given little real push-back from customers and the profit margins being made – which are unsustainable in any properly functioning competitive market. But something’s happening. The stars are aligning. The recent economic collapse and subsequent slow growth has made businesses look at their costs. All functions, including legal, need to do more with less. Organisations of all sizes are facing growing and fast changing competitive pressure. New entrants to the market provide business customers with more choice. Technology, even forgetting the consequences of AI, is becoming widely available at accessible prices that will drive efficiency and better and quicker decision-making. Non-lawyers (at least in some jurisdictions) can own law firms and bring business disciplines to bear … And now we have CLOC (www.cloc.org). An organisation that, with momentum and great timing, helps facilitate and stimulate eco-system change. When people look back in 10-15 years I suspect that 2-4 May 2016 will be seen as one of the key milestones in the transition of the legal market. The legend on the timeline will simply say ‘CLOC Institute May 2016, San Francisco’ but this will understate the significance of what has just happened. I have nothing but admiration for Connie Brenton, Mary O’Carroll, Jeff Franke and all the team that made it happen. For delegates CLOC 2016 felt a bit like a call to arms, which is why I am already looking forward to CLOC 2017! Karl Chapman CLOC Slides May 2016: View presentation here. Karl Chapman Chief Executive Riverview Law Twitter: @KarlChapman100

May 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the May 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of April 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

April 2016

Firm launches ‘virtual lawyer’ software Australasian Lawyer http://rv-l.com/1QEtgTy 29 April 2016 AI Outsourced: How Legal Services Can Tackle Automation Legaltech News http://rv-l.com/1UB9EXg 15 April 2016 Hello, I am BBCTechbot. How can I help? BBC Technology http://rv-l.com/1qL6xQO 12 April 2016 Technology: Breaking the law Financial Times http://rv-l.com/1SYYUTm 11 April 2016 Insource or Outsource? : Law Firm Version LinkedIn http://rv-l.com/24tjkcL 07 April 2016 AI will create more lawyers, not less Global Legal Post http://rv-l.com/1W9YYAc 01 April 2016

Global launch of first Virtual Assistants powered by Kim

Riverview Law has today rolled out the first two of its Virtual Assistants powered by the Kim technology platform (www.ask.kim). Aimed at in-house legal teams globally of any size, these Virtual Assistants aid the delivery of legal services across the business. First they provide business users with an easy-to-use gateway to legal support, ensuring that consistent and full instructions are received and that data capture is automated. For the in-house team, they then provide case management, document storage and dashboards that provide actionable business insight (www.riverviewlaw.com/virtual-assistants/). The Assistants feature comprehensive reporting. For example, at the click of a button in the In-house Assistant, a user can see how many live cases the legal team is working on, of what work types, which business units the matters have come from, the risk profile of all the cases, which legal team members are working on the matters and how long cases are taking by user and work type. It allows legal leaders to ask the right questions and improve operational efficiency. The pricing model is designed to make it easy for in-house teams to buy and deploy these Virtual Assistants. The Virtual Assistants help general counsel, heads of legal and legal COOs ensure that the right work is done by the right people, in the right place and at the right price, whether undertaken internally or externally. Instruction and Triage Assistant The Instruction and Triage Assistant manages, triages and tracks the progress of instructions. It is pre-configured, cloud-based and, depending upon the number of users, can be live within one day (www.riverviewlaw.com/virtual-assistants/). In-house Assistant The Foundation level In-house Assistant adds case management and more comprehensive reporting to the Instruction and Triage Assistant. It too is pre-configured, cloud-based and, depending upon the number of users, can go live within one day (www.riverviewlaw.com/virtual-assistants/). The Professional level In-house Assistant has six modular options that enable organisations to tailor it to their business. This Assistant is cloud-based and typically live in one week. The upgrade options include additional users, company branding, tailored workflows and enhanced reporting. The Enterprise level In-house Assistant can be a cloud or on-premises deployment and is designed for global organisations which not only wish to tailor the system but also require extended implementation and roll-out support, plus ‘Super User’ access rights (to configure the platform in future themselves). Pricing for the Enterprise level Assistant is bespoke. Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law, says: “We are delighted to launch these process assistants built on the Kim platform. Our market testing in the UK, US and Canada has proved fascinating and has shown us how big the global market is for these types of cost-effective and easy-to-deploy Virtual Assistants. More will be launched in the coming months, including Advisory and Smart Assistants, as well as different language versions. “Effectively we are productising the Riverview Law operating model and helping in-house teams deliver better and quicker advice. We know from our use of these tools both internally and with customers that they can add huge value. That’s why we’ve deliberately positioned them so that price and technology are not barriers to adoption. This is one of the ways in which we are seeking to scale Riverview Law globally.” For full pricing of all the Riverview Law Virtual Assistants and their upgrade options please visit http://www.riverviewlaw.com/virtual-assistants/.

April 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the April 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of March 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

March 2016

How artificial intelligence is transforming the legal profession ABA Journal http://rv-l.com/2368Iwe 01 April 2016 The Race Is On to Control Artificial Intelligence, and Tech’s Future New York Times http://rv-l.com/1X2uOw4 25 March 2016 From AlphaGo to AlphaLaw? Global Legal Post http://rv-l.com/1U67sro   22 March 2016 AI and the Law Tools of Tomorrow highlights video Riverview Law http://rv-l.com/1RPfTAU 17 March 2016 Artificial intelligence: Google’s AlphaGo beats Go master Lee Se-dol BBC Technology http://rv-l.com/21WbbXx 12 March 2016 The Future of Legal Services The Law Society http://rv-l.com/1q8Phox 28 January 2016

March 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the March 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of February 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

February 2016

Study: Corporate Law Departments’ Spend on Software Set to Explode http://rv-l.com/1QTaVJ6 Bloomberg BNA February 25 2016

Perspective: For Clients, Bigger Isn’t Better — Better Is Better http://rv-l.com/1QrDbR5 February 22 2016 Bloomberg BNA

What does the future hold for work? http://rv-l.com/1QmsvBZ BBC Radio 4 February 22 2016

From virtual lawyers to virtual assistants http://rv-l.com/1WtrklG +MoreThanLaw February 18 2016

Can technology bring lawyers into the 21st Century? http://rv-l.com/1TnFghH BBC Business February 16 2016

Robots will force experts to find other routes to the top http://rv-l.com/1Xe0Nts Financial Times February 08 2016 Commercial law firms must seize “window of opportunity” to adopt new delivery models http://rv-l.com/1UXBuKE Legal Futures February 08 2016

Robots and Lawyers: Why Can’t We Just Be Friends? http://rv-l.com/1TRKq5R Bloomberg BNA February 02 2016

February 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the February 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of January 2016 and previous months. Best wishes,

January 2016

Richard Susskind Q&A: ‘The competition that kills you … may not look like you’ http://rv-l.com/1UsV9C1 ABA Journal January 28 2016 “Business as usual” is not an option if you want to survive and thrive, Law Society tells solicitors http://rv-l.com/1PHAIDl Legal Futures January 28 2016 Corporate Law Departments: Symptom or Cause of Cracks in the Partnership Model? http://rv-l.com/1Pl0rMp Bloomberg BNA January 27 2016 Is Big Law Having Its Kodak Moment? http://rv-l.com/1ou9HaB January 26 2016 Bloomberg BNA Automating Legal Advice: AI and Expert Systems http://rv-l.com/1SHdNbu January 22 2016 Bloomberg BNA Legal technology: exploiting know-how http://rv-l.com/1ZGneMW The Law Society Gazette January 18 2016 The “Big Three” Annual Reports on Law Land http://rv-l.com/1UNSSS2 Adam Smith, Esq January 11 2016

January 2016 Market Horizon Scanning

Happy New Year and welcome to the January 2016 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of December 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

December 2015

What’s Your Theory of the Business? http://rv-l.com/1IKcBBk Adam Smith, Esq December 30 2015

The 10 Most Important Legal Technology Developments of 2015 http://rv-l.com/1Rheeaw Law Sites Blog December 28 2015

Beautiful Minds: 41 Legal Industry Predictions for 2016 http://rv-l.com/1OAJlJ5 Lexis Nexis December 17 2015

4 Legal Tech Trends To Watch For In 2016 http://rv-l.com/1R7qcFN Above the Law December 14 2015

Lawyers to get contract robots and virtual assistants http://rv-l.com/1Y286Zw Managing Partner December 11 2015 Allstate GC: Law Firm rates are way too high http://rv-l.com/1Twq9Rg Bloomberg BNA December 08 2015 Automation is revolutionising how we work http://rv-l.com/1SsUfGM Raconteur December 06 2015 Resolving the prioritisation crisis in BigLaw firms http://rv-l.com/1TtA5L0 Beaton Capital December 06 2015 Robots Are (Really) Coming. Is Your Job Safe? http://rv-l.com/1ZGPxHJ LinkedIn November 27 2015

AI and the law tools of tomorrow: A special report http://rv-l.com/1Q5kd34 Legal Business November 04 2015

   

Meet Kim – the power behind Riverview Law’s Legal Virtual Assistant plans

Riverview Law has today gone live with Kim, technology that will from Q1 2016 power a ground breaking series of legal Virtual Assistants which complement existing Riverview Law managed service and technology solutions.

Kim is the new name for the technology that combines the CliXLEX platform, which Riverview Law acquired in August 2015, with the output from its R&D unit plus the other technologies that Riverview Law has invested in. Riverview Law worked with CliXLEX for a year before acquiring the company. These latest developments build on Riverview Law’s partnership with the University of Liverpool to leverage its artificial intelligence and related expertise.

The Kim technology is applicable to all sectors and is already being used outside the legal market. In addition to licensing its technology to third parties Kim will, in certain areas, launch its own products.

The Riverview Law Virtual Assistants are designed to help legal teams make quicker and better decisions. They will be able to take on many tasks for lawyers, combining Riverview Law’s legal domain expertise with automation, expert systems, reporting, visualisations and artificial intelligence.

Following extensive R&D, beta-testing and planning, the first Virtual Assistants will be launched at a London press conference in Q1 2016, with more released throughout 2016. They are aimed at all businesses that have an in-house function and will be available globally, including to other law firms.

When these Virtual Assistants are launched Riverview Law will have a comprehensive suite of technology solutions that range from tailored applications for global organisations on an enterprise-wide basis through to off-the-shelf, quick to launch, pre-configured tools for in-house teams.

Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law, says: “Because the Kim technology is applicable to all sectors, we are running this subsidiary as if it is a stand-alone business. In this context Riverview Law licenses the Kim technology on an arms-length basis and exploits it in the legal market, which is our domain expertise. During 2016 we will review the best way in which we can ensure that Kim fulfils its potential, globally, while ensuring that the Riverview Law board remains focused on delivering solutions for the fast changing legal market.”

“Most businesses are, or are becoming, technology-led. Riverview Law is no exception. We handle thousands of legal matters every year for global corporations, mid-sized and fast-growing businesses. This expertise allows us to productise our knowledge in ways that help in-house functions of all sizes, in all sectors, globally. As a board we are very focused on scaling our business internationally using technology as the entry point into new geographies.”

Kim stands for Knowledge, Intelligence, Meaning. Knowledge is pervasive, intelligence requires meaning and context to be effective and www.ask.kim provides all three.

 

Meet Kim – the power behind Riverview Law’s Legal Virtual Assistant plans

Riverview Law has today gone live with Kim, technology that will from Q1 2016 power a ground breaking series of legal Virtual Assistants which complement existing Riverview Law managed service and technology solutions. Kim is the new name for the technology that combines the CliXLEX platform, which Riverview Law acquired in August 2015, with the output from its R&D unit plus the other technologies that Riverview Law has invested in. Riverview Law worked with CliXLEX for a year before acquiring the company. These latest developments build on Riverview Law’s partnership with the University of Liverpool to leverage its artificial intelligence and related expertise. The Kim technology is applicable to all sectors and is already being used outside the legal market. In addition to licensing its technology to third parties Kim will, in certain areas, launch its own products. The Riverview Law Virtual Assistants are designed to help legal teams make quicker and better decisions. They will be able to take on many tasks for lawyers, combining Riverview Law’s legal domain expertise with automation, expert systems, reporting, visualisations and artificial intelligence. Following extensive R&D, beta-testing and planning, the first Virtual Assistants will be launched at a London press conference in Q1 2016, with more released throughout 2016. They are aimed at all businesses that have an in-house function and will be available globally, including to other law firms. When these Virtual Assistants are launched Riverview Law will have a comprehensive suite of technology solutions that range from tailored applications for global organisations on an enterprise-wide basis through to off-the-shelf, quick to launch, pre-configured tools for in-house teams. Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law, says: “Because the Kim technology is applicable to all sectors, we are running this subsidiary as if it is a stand-alone business. In this context Riverview Law licenses the Kim technology on an arms-length basis and exploits it in the legal market, which is our domain expertise. During 2016 we will review the best way in which we can ensure that Kim fulfils its potential, globally, while ensuring that the Riverview Law board remains focused on delivering solutions for the fast changing legal market.” “Most businesses are, or are becoming, technology-led. Riverview Law is no exception. We handle thousands of legal matters every year for global corporations, mid-sized and fast-growing businesses. This expertise allows us to productise our knowledge in ways that help in-house functions of all sizes, in all sectors, globally. As a board we are very focused on scaling our business internationally using technology as the entry point into new geographies.” Kim stands for Knowledge, Intelligence, Meaning. Knowledge is pervasive, intelligence requires meaning and context to be effective and www.ask.kim provides all three.  

December 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the December 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of November 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

November 2015

How new technology is shaking up law firms http://rv-l.com/1NnDRki Raconteur November 2015 This is the biggest shift going on in artificial intelligence http://rv-l.com/1YHgzhz Tech Insider November 28 2015 Growth won’t solve your firm’s problems http://rv-l.com/1N3jJ7Z Beaton Capital November 25 2015

The quiet revolution – poll of 2,000 lawyers reveals law firms are waking up to power of technology http://rv-l.com/1llfYU8 Legal Week November 23 2015

Comment: Artificial intelligence and the law – mostly believe the hype http://rv-l.com/1QTpU4B Legal Business November 10 2015

Artificial intelligence “could be good news” for lawyers and clients alike http://rv-l.com/1PBZZMW Legal Futures November 10 2015 Customers are the winners when the iTunes moment hits law http://rv-l.com/20ubNFU Legal Business report: AI and the law tools of tomorrow November 04 2015 Artificial Intelligence in Law – The State of Play in 2015? http://rv-l.com/1YHthgl Legal IT Insider November 03 2015

Google’s New AI Will Reply to Your Emails so You Don’t Have To http://rv-l.com/1MNgxw9 Fortune November 03 2015

Robot doctors and lawyers? It’s a change we should embrace http://rv-l.com/1koiPLB Daniel Susskind, The Guardian November 02 2015

Why Lawyers Can’t Ignore Technology http://rv-l.com/1k7by3h Bloomberg BNA November 02 2015

 

Would you rather be Uber or a taxi driver?

Reflections on a week with our tech team in the US

Until recently if I needed a taxi I used to add 10 minutes to my likely journey time given the impossibility of knowing when I would successfully flag down a black cab. Now the days of getting wet, missing a train, being late for a meeting are, traffic permitting, gone. Thanks to Uber. Uber owns no cars and employs no drivers. At its simplest it built an app that has dramatically changed, virtually overnight, the supply chain in personal transportation. Uber makes it easy for customers to travel from A to B. Customers get the solution they want at a lower price. Of course, as lawyers often tell me, there are no lessons here for legal or other professional services. None of Uber, Airbnb, Amazon, iTunes speak to the legal market, the potential for disintermediation or the consequences of customers being provided with a better solution. Law is different. Really? After another exhilarating week in the US with our CTO and the tech team of our recent acquisition, I’m even more convinced that the direction of travel is very clear. Uber, Airbnb, Amazon, iTunes, and many others, all talk to the disintermediation that good, simple, low cost technology can bring. They show what happens when customers are given easy to use tools. They change our behaviour. So what will change behaviour in the legal market? What will make customers, whether they are large corporations, mid-sized or small businesses and/or consumers change the way they use legal services? I’ve no doubt that one of the leading change agents in the legal market will be digital / virtual assistants. Tools that when deployed to customers change their behaviour. Tools that enable customers to do what they and suppliers currently do better, quicker and at lower cost. Tools that enable them to select the most effective and efficient supplier, quickly, and switch between in-house and external suppliers at will. This is where the parallels with Uber, a poster-child for technology disintermediation, become interesting: Knowledge and experience: London taxis drivers refer to ‘The Knowledge’, a stringent test that they have to pass to get their licence, as one of their major differentiators. The Knowledge tests the drivers ability to get from location A to location B via the shortest route. London taxi drivers are renowned for knowing all the roads and the routes in London. Before Satnavs / GPS this may have been an advantage. Technology has commoditised The Knowledge and virtual assistants have made it easy for any driver to find their destination. The same will happen in large areas of the law. Of course, The Knowledge ought to help in complex situations; Satnavs / GPS sometimes struggle if they need to divert from the obvious route. But this just speaks to the top of the legal pyramid and the protection that some players will be afforded. Even here much of the complex work will be delivered in a different way. Regulation: Uber has been and is being subjected to significant legal challenges. Taxi operators in many countries object to its model because it is not regulated in the same way. Well, object they may, the reality is that customers have and are voting with their wallets. The message customers have sent is compete or wither on the vine. Taxi operators need to recognise that monopoly pricing and a lack of innovation (they could have invented Uber) is now harming rather than helping them. The same will happen in large areas of the law. Profits and margins are only going one way for the vast majority of incumbents. The next generation If you speak to older drivers you will hear them say that it is not the same as it was, that when they started, they never thought that that their human expertise and knowledge could be replaced by technology. They add that they are pleased that they are coming to the end of their career and they worry about young cabbies. They recognise that they lived in what will be seen as a golden era for taxi drivers. There are too many drivers and Uber has compounded the problem. Of course, there is no over-supply of lawyers in the UK and the US and none of us have heard partners in law firms say that they are pleased that they are coming towards the end of their careers given the changing landscape! In this sense the only difference between taxi drivers and lawyers is that the taxi market is further into its restructuring than law is. The same will happen in large areas of the law. Disintermediation: In practice the black cabs of London and the yellow cabs of New York have been disintermediated. Until Uber we, the customer, were dependent on a taxi being in the right place at the right time. Taxi drivers determined whether we could take a ride because either they were there or they were not. Now we decide. A simple app has changed the value chain. It has brought more supply into the market. It has put the customer at the centre of the model. It has reduced prices and improved the customer experience. The same will happen in large areas of the law. I’d rather be Uber than a taxi driver even though I’ve had many brilliant taxi rides with opinionated London cabbies who have either told me the result of the next election, loved/hated my beloved Chelsea and/or moaned about … well everything, including Uber. Of course, and to quote a well-known legal commentator, I may be wrong. But, it’s better to compete than moan and I know where we’re investing our time and money; building a technology-led business with deep legal domain expertise. We will employ more lawyers next year than we do this year and we will employ even more lawyers in future years. But within a few years we will have more developers, data analysts, knowledge engineers, client managers … etc than we have lawyers. It is this combination of tech and domain expertise that will win in the emerging legal market. After all, Uber has a valuation of US$50bn and employs less than 2000 people while the value of a yellow cab medallion in NY has almost halved. Customers are the winners when legal virtual / digital assistants become widely available; assistants who will not be restricted to the legal market! Karl Chapman, Chief Executive, Riverview Law

Customers are the winners when the iTunes moment hits law

The below is an article written by our CEO, Karl Chapman, in the Legal Business report ‘AI and the law tools of tomorrow‘ which was published in November 2015 in association with Riverview Law.

Customers are the winners when the iTunes moment hits law

Change is in the air. You can sense it. Actually you can experience it, now!

We see a rapidly growing desire among our customers to understand how the technology revolution we’re living through will impact business models generally, their business, their function, and their people specifically. Twenty-six years after Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web there is a realisation that none of us are immune from the exponential impact of Moore’s law. A law that has had (and will have!) many consequences, including IBM Watson (a computer), beating the two all-time (human) champions on the TV game show ‘Jeopardy!’. Law is definitely not immune from this revolution. Neither are other professional services (TurboTax), taxi drivers (Uber), hotels (Airbnb), record shops (iTunes)… The regulatory barriers that protected sectors are falling, failing or being overtaken by customer action. Trust in brands and professionals is being replaced by alternative trust systems. LegalZoom is the best known legal brand in the US. None of us needs to trust in a hotel brand now that we have the combined experience of contributors to TripAdvisor. Accepted norms and ways to do things are being challenged, daily, by increasingly connected customers, whether consumers or businesses. Start-ups and technology have no blinkers, they do not know it cannot be done. Think about the implications of the wonderful comment from the IBM executive who said: “Watson doesn’t know it won Jeopardy!” In legal this growing desire to understand has to be measured against a low starting point. When we set up Riverview Law in 2012 and talked about the impact on the delivery of legal services and lawyers of automation, expert systems, analytics and visualisations we were greeted with the same shrug of irrelevance and ‘you don’t understand the law, dear boy’ as we do now when we talk about computable contracts, blockchains, virtual assistants, and the rise of the knowledge worker.

ai-and-the-law-tools-of-tomorrow

However, over the last year there has been a change. Our annual customer seminar in June – The impact of global technology trends on your business, the role of the legal function and what you can do about it today – was oversubscribed.

Increasingly bigger in- house legal and IT teams visit our Wirral Service Delivery Centre to see how people and technology can work seamlessly and effectively. In the last two weeks I’ve been asked three times ‘so when is the iTunes moment in law?’ There will be no one date for the legal equivalent of that iTunes moment. But the direction of travel is very clear and we can already identify the most likely source of this moment: the arrival of category re-defining virtual assistants. The race is on to create virtual assistants that will help customers, whether consumers, small businesses or large corporations, access legal (and other) support and guidance quickly and cost-effectively. They are already here in other areas: Hive, Cortana, Siri  and Indigo. They are emerging in law: ROSS, Amelia, Ravel and Judicata. Like Uber, which owns no taxis, and Airbnb, which owns no bedrooms, these assistants will put knowledge in the hands of customers. They will change where value sits. They will disintermediate large swathes of the current supply chain. This is great news for customers. They are the winners when the iTunes moment hits.

For more information, please contact:

Karl Chapman, Chief Executive, Riverview Law T: 0844 257 0027 E: info@riverviewlaw.com www.riverviewlaw.com

November 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the November 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of October 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

October 2015

Will newbie associates be replaced by Watson? 35% of law firm leaders can envision it http://rv-l.com/1MsqrcD ABA Journal October 26 2015 Life with my robot secretary http://rv-l.com/1Rg2nIb Fast Company October 26 2015 Computer vs. Lawyer? Many Firm Leaders Expect Computers to Win http://rv-l.com/1S90gqm The American Lawyer October 24 2015 Artificial intelligence to radically transform the role of lawyers http://rv-l.com/1RdLhdW Managing Partner October 23 2015 AIG to Launch Data-Driven Legal Ops Business in 2016 http://rv-l.com/1RdLmOP Bloomberg BNA October 20 2015

The Organized Lawyer http://rv-l.com/1RdLzkS SeytLines October 15 2015

Corporate legal departments to give law firms less work in 2016 http://rv-l.com/1GIcEfC Managing Partner October 15 2015

Professor Dr Robot QC http://rv-l.com/1jQx9Ng The Economist October 17 2015

October 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the October 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of September 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

September 2015

The Future of Buying Legal Services http://rv-l.com/1JGgekQ Professor Stephen Mayson September 28 2015

The search for a thinking machine http://rv-l.com/1N4YAz3 BBC News September 17 2015

Intelligent Machines: New York’s super smart AI couple http://rv-l.com/1PQ7nSZ BBC News September 16 2015 Magic-circle law firms to use AI in the next 12-18 months http://rv-l.com/1iPMBbZ Managing Partner September 14 2015 Intelligent Machines: The jobs robots will steal first http://rv-l.com/1JGgroh BBC News September 14 2015

The Napsterization of Legal Services http://rv-l.com/1O5yg6l 3 Geeks and a Law Blog September 13 2015

News You Can Use: A Robot Paralegal? http://rv-l.com/1YRdRqG Advocate’s Studio August 19 2015 At the Inflection Point: the CMO’s Role in Reinventing Law Firm Business Models http://rv-l.com/1FItpqR Kira May 25 2015

Riverview Law launches prototyping consultancy for in-house legal

Riverview Law has today launched a prototyping consultancy to help in-house counsel evolve their legal operating model and develop their own scalable automated processes for legal work. Aimed at large global corporations and mid-sized companies, the consultancy enables customers to build an end-to-end technology-led solution to address their legal needs. Crucially, it will take just four weeks to create a live ‘proof of concept’. The consultancy uses Riverview Law’s proven technology, legal expertise and implementation model to create a solution that encompasses instruction management, triage, case management and document creation, along with activity, quality and risk reporting. The end result is an operating model that ensures legal work is undertaken by the right people, in the right place, in the right way, at the right time and at the right price, whether that work is undertaken in-house or by external providers. It also enables in-house legal functions to establish a clearer understanding as to how technology, workflow automation, reporting and data visualisations can help make their function more effective and efficient on a sustainable basis. This latest development follows Riverview Law’s recent acquisition of CliXLEX, which allowed it to expand its R&D and Client Management Centre in Bridgewater, New Jersey and its partnership with the University of Liverpool to leverage the university’s Artificial Intelligence expertise. Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law, says: “Most businesses are, or are becoming, technology-led. Riverview Law is no exception to this. However, on its own being a technology-led business, from automation and visualisations through to Artificial Intelligence, is of limited value without legal domain expertise. “Riverview Law handles thousands of matters every year for global corporations, mid-sized and fast-growing businesses. We are excited by this addition to our service offering, which we are launching following demand from customers and after running a number of these prototyping sessions with global corporations. The results delivered in four weeks always exceed expectations.”

Equality & Diversity at Riverview Law – Diversity Data 2015

Riverview Law is committed to treating all its team members and job applicants equally and fairly. We are a proud member of the Law Society Diversity & Inclusion Charter.

Riverview Law encourages and values diversity and aims to have a workforce that is representative of the wider community.

These principles of equality and diversity also apply to the manner in which we treat our customers, business partners, suppliers and visitors.

On an annual basis we collect diversity data from our staff. We do not make it compulsory for our staff to provide their diversity data, however we encourage them to send it to us to enable us to monitor and review our diversity arrangements.

A selection of the results of our 2015 diversity data collection survey are displayed below. We have not published any diversity data in a way that might identify individuals.

Age graph

Gender graph

Disability graph

Education graph

Higher education graph

Support graph

Primary carer graph

For further information on Riverview Law’s Equality & Diversity arrangements contact Beth Britton (Equality & Diversity Champion) at bethbritton@riverviewlaw.com.

September 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the September 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of August 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

August 2015

Ides of Maturity reflected in State of Legal Market Report http://rv-l.com/1NN5zfK Beaton Capital August 30 2015 Uber is the new bus http://rv-l.com/1JzSNyk Fast Company August 25 2015 Law and money: Not the usual story http://rv-l.com/1KrqNiD Legal Futures August 25 2015 Lawyers and technology: are firms finally getting to grips with modern tech demands http://rv-l.com/1Jmhpt7 Legal Week August 19 2015 Big Data and the Linguistics of Law http://rv-l.com/1JolpJv Lawyer Watch August 18 2015 Australasian Law Firms Planning for a Digital, Divergent, Differentiated Future http://rv-l.com/1JlBygy Australasian Legal Practice Management Association August 2015 Your Lawyer may soon ask this AI-powered app for legal help http://rv-l.com/1EygqHf Wired July 08 2015

Riverview Law acquires US tech business to advance use of AI in legal market

Riverview Law has acquired New Jersey-based knowledge automation business CliXLEX for an undisclosed sum, as its plans to develop the use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the legal market gather pace. The deal is a major step towards the creation of ‘virtual assistants’ that will improve the quality and speed of lawyers’ and paralegal work while freeing them to focus on key tactical and strategic matters. It follows the partnership Riverview Law entered into earlier this year with the University of Liverpool to leverage the university’s Artificial Intelligence expertise. CliXLEX owns and licenses a Knowledge Automation Platform that enables knowledge workers, such as lawyers, with basic Microsoft Office skills to create, automate, maintain and evolve complex end-to-end workflows and processes for all areas of legal, compliance, risk and related activity. The platform manages all activity from instruction, triage, case management, document creation and storage to alert triggers, workflow creation and forensic audit. The CliXLEX technology combines advanced data collection and management, configuration and machine-to-machine learning techniques with a growing level of Artificial Intelligence. The technology integrates seamlessly with third party solutions and is cloud-based although it can also be deployed on premise if required. Critically it has a powerful legacy integration layer toolkit. Riverview Law has worked with CliXLEX for over a year to test the relevance of the platform to the legal market via its managed service and licensed technology offerings to global customers. These tests have proved highly successful showing great potential to deliver significant operational, quality and cost benefits for customers. Combined with Riverview Law’s visualisation and analytics capabilities CliXLEX enhances the existing services Riverview Law provides to customers and accelerates its move into the use of expert systems and Artificial Intelligence. CLiXLEX becomes part of Riverview Law’s group structure and will be based out of the Riverview Law Technology R&D and Client Management Centre in Bridgewater, New Jersey. Richard Yawn, the founder and principal shareholder of CliXLEX becomes a director and Chief Technology Officer of this Riverview Law technology subsidiary. He assumes responsibility for spearheading the further development of the Knowledge Automation Platform and Riverview Law’s investments in Artificial Intelligence, automation and expert systems. Richard has a long track-record in the IT industry, having previously worked with IBM’s Microsoft Practice and as an Enterprise Architect at Aflac. Richard spent the first 13 years of his career developing manufacturing systems using Neural Net and Expert System technologies. Andy Daws, VP North America at Riverview Law, joins this new technology subsidiary as a director and its Chief Customer Officer. Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law, says: “The race is on to provide virtual assistants to knowledge workers, powerful tools that help people and organisations make quicker and better decisions and allow knowledge workers to focus on the key tactical and strategic matters. The legal market is not immune from this trend which will impact all sectors of the economy. “We intend to lead the legal market in providing tools that enable legal and related work to be completed quicker, better and more cost-effectively, whether conducted by lawyers, paralegals, contract managers, risk and compliance officers, or business people.” “This acquisition builds on our significant investments in visualisation and analytics tools, computational argumentation and our Knowledge Transfer Partnership with the University of Liverpool. We expect to make further investments in this area as we evolve and future-proof our business model and at the same time help our customers do the same.” In the UK Riverview Law was advised by the Birmingham office of Gateley plc, and in the US it was advised by the New York office of Gibbons.  

August 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the August 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of July 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

July 2015

The Law Firm of the Future, Part 2: Five Dimensions of Difference http://rv-l.com/1Jc98uQ Thomson Reuters August 11 2015 Legal research pioneers to bring “artificially intelligent attorney” to UK http://rv-l.com/1WhMBR5 Legal Futures August 05 2015 The Law Firm of the Future – What is Needed? http://rv-l.com/1f77egY Thomson Reuters August 05 2015 Law Departments vs. Law Firms: What Innovation Really Looks Like http://rv-l.com/1IYbzuF Legaltech news August 03 2015 Law 2023: A Look Ahead for the Legal Profession http://rv-l.com/1J3hy5C Corcoran Consulting Group July 08 2015 Pricing and analytics: Houston, we have a problem! http://rv-l.com/1NpLjgU Beaton Capital July 07 2015 Full report & interviews: Law 2023 http://rv-l.com/1mZazAC Law 2023 2015

Riverview Law doubles investment in learning and development and awards six training contracts

Riverview Law, the fixed-priced legal services business, is doubling investment in its staff learning and development programme in the next financial year and has awarded six new solicitor training contracts starting in October 2015. Riverview’s new solicitor training programme awarded seven members of staff with a two-year training contract when it launched in September 2014. The latest cohort takes the total number of trainee solicitors at the business to thirteen. Unique to Riverview, the scheme is only open to existing staff and specifically to individuals who have been employed by the business for at least six months and have completed a successful probation period. The new trainees are: Suzanne Betts, Lydia Preece, Mark Rand, Chloe Smith, Sophia Suleman and Ruth Warburton. Riverview Law’s Operations Director, Katy Robson, says: “We are thrilled to be able to build on the success of our inaugural solicitor training scheme and delighted that we are able to offer six more trainee contracts this year. Our strong commitment to staff training and development enables us to cultivate existing talent within our business. We wish our new trainees the best of luck as they start their first year.” Director of Legal Services at Riverview Law, Steven Zdolyny, explains how the business is committed to the ethos of ‘growing our own’: “Recruiting from our existing talent pool means that candidates already fit our business and our values. We have been very open in saying that we believe that the future leaders of Riverview Law are among those in our business today. “As we continue to win blue chip customers and grow existing contracts, we will continue to recruit, train and progress talented people within our business. For this reason, we have doubled the amount that we will invest in our learning and development programme in the next financial year.” Further details about careers at Riverview Law can be found here.

MSU Law Graduate Joins Riverview Law North American Expansion

The below press release was published by Michigan State University on 3rd August 2015. You can read the press release on their website here MSU Law graduate Brian C. Pike,2015, will join Riverview Law’s North American team as the UK-based law firm continues its expansion into the United States legal market. Opening this month, Riverview’s New Jersey office will be close to its existing hub in Manhattan, as well as to the technology and entrepreneurial ecosystem surrounding Princeton University. “With an increasing percentage of our revenues generated outside the UK and a growing U.S. customer base, we’re investing heavily in expanding our stateside presence and market offerings” said Andy Daws, Riverview’s VP North America. “Emerging technologies and next-gen automation are at the core of what we’re doing here, and there are very few law schools producing graduates like Brian who truly understand and embrace that landscape.” Pike was a standout student at MSU Law, a finalist in the ReInvent Law Innovative Ideas Competition and winning the law college’s very first social media contest. He is a certified civil and domestic mediator and a certified Lean design thinker. Pike landed the very first international internship with Riverview Law by tweeting about his interest in being an intern. “Brian is an outstanding ambassador for MSU Law and LegalRnD,” said Daniel W. Linna Jr., Assistant Dean for Career Development and Director of LegalRnD – The Center for Legal Services Innovation. “He excelled in the classroom with MSU Law’s innovative curriculum to develop the 21st Century skills necessary for success in today’s legal industry.” Pike joins Riverview as a Knowledge Automation Architect, a new role reflecting the ease with which knowledge workers such as lawyers are able to use Riverview’s proprietary technology platform to orchestrate and automate end-to-end processes and documents. Our licensed In-House Solutions platform puts control back into the hands of the legal department,” added Daws. “Our platform enables lawyers to automate their own processes and provides real-time data and business insight to help customers make quicker and better decisions. Brian is an ideal candidate to join our pioneering efforts in this field.” Contacts: Daniel W. Linna Jr, Michigan State University College of Law, assistant dean for career development, director of LegalRnD – The Center for Legal Services Innovation, and professor of law in residence Office: 517-432-6934; Email: linnadan@law.msu.edu Andy Daws, Riverview Law, VP North America Office: 212-729-7724 ; Email: andydaws@riverviewlaw.com Michigan State University College of Law successfully prepares graduates for legal employment in settings across the nation. The elective and required curriculum of the College of Law integrates theory and practice, thereby helping to ensure that graduates of MSU Law are well prepared for their first professional positions and their professional responsibilities for decades to come. Riverview Law provides large corporations with a high quality, fixed priced and proven alternative to using traditional law firms and/or growing the size of their in-house legal function. Using client dedicated teams which combine lawyers, client managers, data analysts and other professionals, Riverview Law helps free the internal legal team so that it can evolve its legal operating mode to focus on higher value added strategic and tactical requirements. Riverview Law has three core offerings. It provides managed service solutions via its Legal Advisory Outsourcing services. It licenses to in-house teams its service delivery and workflow platform, which manages instructions into the function, triage, case management and reporting. It provides barrister-led litigation, risk and compliance advice and support. Riverview Law does not practice law in the US. Its US activities are currently focused on R&D, licensed technology and client management.

Case study: David, Legal Manager

Name: David Role: Legal Manager Hours: Full time Customers: The calibre of customer that Riverview works for is excellent – the likes of which are in many respects the preserve of large City law firms. Also, many of Riverview’s customers have a truly global footprint and in all cases transact their business on an international level. The industry sectors that Riverview work across are broad and exciting from FMCG, finance/banking, IT, travel, telecoms to other interesting niche areas. Complexity of work: My work is interesting and complex in nature, regularly involving global supply agreements and dealing with various business partners across the world. The work is also rewarding and important to the customer, such that you can actually see the impact it has within a large global company. For example, this may relate to a global ground transportation agreement, to a master hardware purchase and support agreement or international estates management. Fundamentally, because I act as an extension of the in-house legal team at a large FTSE 100 company, the work is varied and stimulating dealing with both transactional and advisory matters.

The dawn (and the imminent explosion) of AI in law and legal services

By Steven Malyj, Trainee Solicitor at Riverview Law Towards the end of last year I watched a TEDSalon talk delivered by Kenneth Cukier to a Berlin audience in June 2014.  During the talk Cukier referred to machine learning and the advent of the self-driving car – how the approach to this was evolving from the challenge of explaining to a machine how to drive (think Hugh Jackman teaching the robot how to box in Real Steel), to a state where we provide the facts and the machine teaches itself (Cukier 2014).  It seemed like a fanciful notion and as I listened I imagined hauliers, taxi drivers and white van men going about their day blissfully unaware of the pending implications that this technology may have on their future.  Surely, now that the UK Government has unveiled its plans to invest almost £19 million in the road legal testing of driverless cars between now and 2020, these workers will begin to fret for their livelihoods.  Then, in January 2015 Riverview Law announced a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (‘KTP’) with the University of Liverpool to (among other things) draw on a pool of skilled data scientists and ground breaking Artificial Intelligence (‘AI’) with the aim of automating some of the cognitive abilities of knowledge workers and provide organisations with intelligent decision support tools. In a momentary panic, the palpitations began, my palms became clammy and I started to picture myself cueing up with aforementioned motorists to ‘sign on’.  But what does it really mean?  Where will AI really take the workforce?  This article investigates the dawn (and the imminent explosion) of AI in law and legal services and dispels the myth that new technology will signify the end for lawyers; positing rather that this is merely a new beginning, bringing with it a host of new opportunities for myself and my learned friends. I think we can take it as read by now that law firms, traditionally, are resistant to change; or that is at least how it reads on the face of things.  Some of us (myself included) may think it is more the case that law firms are not resistant, they are incapableOf the 304 respondents to the Altman Weil Law Firms in Transition survey of 2014 (Altman Weil, Inc 2014) the overwhelming consensus opined that the legal market had changed in fundamental ways, 67% of them predicted that the rate of change will only increase, but only 13% expressed any confidence in their firm’s ability to change or to at least keep pace with changes (Georgetown Law 2015).  With that in mind, it is perhaps no surprise that technology has not permeated ‘our world’ with any real pace, so before the critics among us nonchalantly snub the future of legal technology as some sort of urban legend – a bed time story about jurisprudential robots that will sneak into our office and steal our desks – it may be worthwhile briefly examining the application of AI in other fields. It should be enough to refer you to the household names of Amazon and Netflix and the way they use machine learning to suggest books and movies that you may be interested in; or how Facebook and LinkedIn can suggest people that you might know or wish to connect with.  No?  Okay, in October 2012, Geoffrey Hinton and a team of 4 doctoral students won a competition aimed at designing automated drug detection systems.  These systems use algorithms to analyse data sets and identify particular molecules that will bind to targets and therefore make for effective treatments. Interestingly, the competition ran for 60 days, but Hinton and his team did not enter the competition until the last two weeks.  Even more interestingly, neither Hinton nor his compadres had any background whatsoever in Chemistry, Biology or Life Sciences.  They even beat off competition from all of the algorithms developed by Merck – one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world.  Hinton and his team achieved this accolade using Deep Learning; a process that attempts to mimic the neural connections of the human brain, processing data in much the same way.  I firmly believe that this is an amazing fete of technology and a sure sign of things to come – law is incredibly complex in its own right, but I defy anybody not to agree that it is at least paralleled by modern medicine and if 5 people with no subject matter expertise can outperform industry leaders then why can it not happen in law?  Make no mistake, machine learning and AI will go everywhere and it will happen at an alarming rate from herein. Applications of machine learning are certainly serving to further the principles of Moore’s Law – the theory that over time the pace of technological advances will increase on an exponential curve.  Figure 1[1] shows how Moore’s Law is progressing. Accelerating pace of change The graph shows that right about now, the processing power of modern technology has surpassed the processing power of a mouse’s brain and that by circa 2025 it will surpass the processing power of the human brain. Now, Moore’s Law isn’t ‘real law’.  It’s not grounded in hard science and empirical facts.  Moore’s Law was a simple observation by Gordon Moore in 1965 that the number of transistors per square inch on integrated circuits roughly doubled each year since the invention of the integrated circuit and predicted that the trend would continue this way.  Looking at the historical plots on the chart, it was quite the prediction, so can we really say that more is not to come?  And quickly at that? What, then, for law?  The use of AI in law is not really a new concept; the first International Conference on AI and Law was held in Boston on 27th – 29th May 1987 and it has been held on every odd numbered year since then.  In 1988 Philip Capper and Richard Susskind didn’t just co-author Latent Damage Law: The Expert System, they developed a piece of software that could guide lawyers through “a dense web of barely intelligible interrelated rules” (Susskind 2014). The system mapped over 2 million paths that would guide lawyers to an informed solution and it was all extrapolated from the mind of one expert lawyer; it was so good that it was considered better than Capper and it was able to reduce the time that it took a lawyer to do this work from 10 hours to just 10 minutes.  But this was a very niche field and so perhaps it is understandable as to why the impact on the legal sector wasn’t what we would call earth shattering.  Further, to extrapolate that technique across the whole of the industry would take a great deal of initiative and inclination to gather the best minds in each field of law for as long as it takes to transfer their knowledge to a system.  We need systems that can learn, spot patterns, understand language and context and adapt. Germany’s Federal Government have recently deployed an AI application which makes automated decisions regarding citizens’ claims for child benefit.  The system is able to assess claims made by citizens by interpreting the justifications that they put forward in their application and determining whether these justifications merit the award of the benefit(s) claimed (Hodson 2013).  I cannot attest to the grounds for awarding child benefit in Germany or the means and criteria by which such claims are assessed, but I suspect that it is safe to say, like in the UK, that such claims are not straightforward and will include the opportunity for the claimant to provide details of extenuating circumstances and any other relevant information to support their claim and so on. What we have here is an example of an advancement in technology from Capper and Susskind’s method of man teaches machine – machine guides skilled operator, to an instance where man tells the machine the basics – machine learns, understands and operates itself.  The cynic here would shout at the top of their lungs “this will cost real people their jobs”. The optimist (particularly from a UK perspective) might well counter the cynic by pointing to the time it takes to process claims, deal with challenges and respond to the ever increasing backlog of queries – it is fair to say that government organisations are reticent to increase staffing just because the number of claims increases; so, if we take the first step of a claim out of the hands of the human workforce, that workforce is freed up to spend more time quality assuring, assessing challenges and queries and providing the sound customer service that the clients are so often crying out for. In Helsinki, TrademarkNow is a relatively new start up firm offering a web based trademark management platform that can provide instant trademark search results in as quick as 15 seconds (shaving days off the traditional trademark search methods), provide automated and relevant watch alerts and allow users wider watch capabilities (TrademarkNow 2015).  If you consider the amount of data in existence with regard to trademark and intellectual property – all those companies, all those trademarks, logos and brands – is it any wonder that this area of law has been among the first to see the exploitation of automated systems?  The standard approach to conducting a trademark search is a detailed review of the proposed brand, potential names and whether any other companies exist.  But lawyers will appreciate that it doesn’t end there – we need to consider whether there is any similarity with other brands; after all our clients don’t want to potentially face a claim for passing off simply by virtue of the fact that their customers might mistake the product for another brand altogether.  This is where TrademarkNow gets interesting, because it will go beyond the generic search, beyond even a search for similar names and brands based on phonetics, colour or make up; in the event of a potential match, Trademark now uses AI to review that particular match’s history of defending its brand, producing a risk profile and an analysis of the likelihood that the proposed brand will make it onto the trademark register. Lex Machina is a Stanford based company that offers data analytics tools to lawyers in the field of IP litigation.  Consider a typical approach to litigation – the client comes to you with a claim that another party has infringed their intellectual property rights in whatever product or service they offer to their customers (or, similarly, that another party has accused your client of infringing their intellectual property rights).  You take their information, you use your understanding of commercial law and intellectual property interspersed with research from a handful of cases and you assess the merits of their claim or defence.  Lex Machina toss aside the merits of the claim.  Instead they use data analytics to analyse the behaviour of opposition, counsel and judges across a range factors to provide a forecast result.  Put simply, it has the potential to accurately predict the outcome of a case with a much greater degree of certainty than any human, because it has the time; it has the inclination (that is to say as far as it is possible for a machine to possess such a trait); and it has the ability to analyse huge volumes of data that a lawyer just would not have the time to conduct (unless of course the client is happy to pay them their hourly rate – and then some – to do so).  It has quite aptly been dubbed “Moneyball for Lawyers” (Doherty 2014). I feel that it is necessary again to come back to the worry that AI, in practice, will spell cuts for lawyers.  To the contrary, Anna Ronkainen (the co-founder of TrademarkNow) disagrees with any assertion that AI is only going to add a fifth horseman to the Apocalypse – I’m thinking Lady Justice bursting through the flames on a mighty chariot and striking down lawyers left, right and centre.  Instead, Ronkainen suggests that AI will allow lawyers to focus on more meaningful tasks by eliminating manual work, which brings us back to the point of lowering the cost of the service to clients while at the same time increasing its value (Ronkainen 2015).  She further notes how the UK “is at the global forefront of this development with professional liberalisation initiatives such as Alternative Business Structures…” (Ronkainen 2015). I am largely inclined to agree with Ronkainen.  More to the point, I continue to be excited by the ever changing face of legal technology and I am privileged to work with an organisation that is not only fully prepared to embrace these changes, but is also exploiting the potential that it holds for lawyers and making a conscious effort to dispel the fears that it will reduce the workforce.  To the cynics and the optimists alike, we can only say “watch this space”. Bibliography Altman Weil, Inc. Law Firms in Transition: An Altman Weil Flash Survey. Prods. Thomas S Clay, & Eric A Seeger. Pennsylvania, 2014. Big Data is Better Data. Directed by TED Salon. Performed by Kenneth Cukier. 2014. Doherty, Sean. “Moneyball for Lawyers.” Law Technology News, April 2014. Georgetown Law. 2015 Report on the State of the Legal Market. Georgetown Law, 2015. Hodson, Hal. “AI Gets Involved with the Law.” New Scientist, 2013: 20. Ronkainen, Anna. “Don’t Rage Against the Machine.” Intellectual Property Magazine, March 2015. Future of Artificial Intelligence and Law. Performed by Richard Susskind. ReInvent Law, 2014. TrademarkNow. TrademarkNow. May 2015. https://www.trademarknow.com/ (accessed May 2015). [1] http://www.reddit.com/r/singularity/comments/2xu2sx/moores_law_2015_mouse_brain_has_been_reached/

Case Study: Janne, Commercial Lawyer

Name: Janne Role: Commercial Lawyer Hours: Part time Background: I am a 12 years qualified Solicitor. I trained in London then moved to the North West. I spent 4 years as an employment Solicitor then moved to practice banking and finance before joining Riverview Law in October 2013. Customers: The calibre of customer that Riverview Law works with is excellent. I work for a FTSE 100 business so for me the calibre is the same as when I worked at Hill Dickinson in Liverpool. Role: I work for a global banking customer at Riverview Law. On a daily basis I review key contracts and assess the risks involved and/or identify any gaps that exist between the contacts and the banks standard / template documents. Complexity of work: I generally work on the most complex matters but I assist with providing quality assurance for more junior members of the team and less complex work. Career prospects, development and learning opportunities: Riverview Law has a great balance. There is no pressure to get promoted (unlike in private practice) but if you want to reach for the stars the opportunities are right there for you. There are opportunities coming thick and fast and if you want to develop and learn you can do no better than join Riverview Law. Flexible working: The flexible working hours have assisted me immeasurably! I have two young daughters and have been able to maintain my career and career prospects while still spending lots of time being a Mum. When my children are older my circumstances will have changed but I will not have had years out of the legal market. On the contrary I am right at the heart of it, in an incredibly dynamic environment and the balance for me as a lawyer and a Mum could not be better. I feel incredibly fortunate to work in such a flexible environment.    

Case Study: Richard, Legal Manager

Name: Richard Role: Legal Manager Hours: Full time Background:  Qualified Solicitor and Legal Manager responsible for a team of 26 staff dealing with global commercial contracts for a FTSE 100 customer. I trained in Chester and latterly worked in Liverpool advising businesses on commercial matters. Career prospects, development and learning opportunities: The development of the team is critical to the success of Riverview Law. Karl Chapman (CEO) regularly reminds the team that the future leaders of the business will be grown from within and this highlights how importantly the Board takes the development of the Riverview Law employees. As well as the normal CPD courses that Solicitors attend, we have our own internal training which is specifically tailored to the needs of the employees and we are currently rolling out a comprehensive Learning and Development Program covering not only legal development but also training in other additional skills necessary for people and business management. In addition, we currently have 7 Trainee Solicitors with a further 10 opportunities this year, we have a Legal Apprentice and there are regularly promotion opportunities across the business which will only increase as we grow. All of this is testament to how important Riverview Law holds the learning and development of its staff, particularly in the context that we are not yet 4 years old!  

Case Study: Deepak, Legal Manager

Name: Deepak Role: Legal Manager Hours: Full time Background: Before joining Riverview I spent 10 years practicing banking and securitisation law at Jones Day, a US firm based in London.  My practice focused on representing lenders as well as corporates and issuers in trade receivables, inventory finance, structured securities, and cross-border securitisations. I acted predominantly on the lender side for global banking customers. Customers: The calibre of customers, both actual and potential, is of the very highest quality.  Every customer that we currently act for is either a FTSE 100 company or an internationally recognised household name.  One of the things that surprised me the most when I switched from my previous role was that the quality and sophistication of the customers that I have the pleasure of acting for did not diminish; in fact the amount of exposure I gained to GC level contacts increased. Role: The teams I manage act for a global bank on two large, regulatory led compliance projects.  The teams analyse the bank’s legacy contracts by reference to a number of due diligence data points which allows the bank and its regulators to assess contractual exposures to key suppliers.  The outputs from these projects are used by the bank to ensure compliance within the regulatory matrix within which they operate but also as a means by which to assess the commercial content of their existing agreements, with a view to deriving maximum value from them. A key part of the role is to ensure consistency and coherence of reporting to the customer but another important element, and one of the most gratifying aspects, is the opportunity to work with, coach and offer training to young lawyers at the outset of their careers. Complexity of work: The legacy contracts that the team analyse cover the full spectrum of supply side agreements that a global entity might enter into and the complexity of the work we do varies accordingly.  In fact that is one of the most engaging aspects of the role.  In my previous guise I advised on a number of matters that were between £500m and £1 billion in value and were considered market leading but I can honestly say that it’s been a long time since I’ve felt as intellectually engaged as I have been since joining Riverview! Career prospects, development and learning opportunities: The career prospects at Riverview Law are limitless – we set our own horizons here. I’ve worked for an international law firm and have been on secondment at an investment bank but I would say that none offered as considered, structured and strategic learning and development programs as we do.  The thought, time and effort that goes into putting together training plans is nothing short of remarkable. Flexible working: The flexible working hours aspect of the role is, in my opinion, one of the most important benefits Riverview offers to its employees and one of the key things that distinguish us from other employers.

Case Study: Debbie, Solicitor

Name: Debbie Role: Solicitor Hours: Part time

Background: Solicitor, qualified in 1986. Worked mainly in contract and procurement since I qualified, for a shipping company, major electricity supplier, and public authority. I’ve been at Riverview for just over a year and have worked on one of the accounts for a FTSE 100 business. Customers: I only have personal experience of one customer, which is a FTSE 100 business and is a very large player in the financial market. I am aware that other Riverview customers are large organisations with significant assets and on that basis, the Riverview customers appear to be financially sound. On this account I deal with contract based matters, Statements of Work’s, Non-Disclosure Agreements and contractual matters of varying complexity, along with an increasing number of risk reviews and gap analyses, and appraisal and consideration of standard and individualised contracts. More recently, we have seen in increase in non-transactional work and drafted clauses widely used in contract templates. My role also involves the quality assurance of more junior staff work. Complexity of work: Some work is fairly straightforward, but increasingly the volume and the complexity of the work is becoming more significant. Many contracts/terms/documents are long detailed and complicated, requiring reviews of and advice on significant risks and liabilities. Career prospects, development and learning opportunities: Riverview are very positive about recruitment and development of staff generally. They encourage employees to develop their skills and this contributes to their ability to progress within the business. Riverview are very pro-active in encouraging staff members to share knowledge with other staff, and have a robust Learning and Development program in place. Flexible working: The ability to work flexible hours at Riverview Law has assisted me greatly. That was one of the things that attracted me to Riverview. They have a very positive attitude to flexible working wherever possible.  

Case Study: Angela, Legal Manager

Name: Angela Role: Legal Manager Hours: Full time

Background:  I completed my training contract at DLA Piper in Manchester, then qualified into the Projects team at Addleshaw Goddard in 2006.  I moved to McGrigors in 2008 (which was a mid-size national firm, with a new Manchester office) and was promoted to Senior Associate in 2012.  McGrigors later merged with Pinsent Masons, where I worked until joining Riverview in October 2013. My experience before Riverview was focused on long-term, bespoke public-private partnership models (acting primarily for house builders and local authorities). I joined Riverview Law in October 2013 as I was looking for somewhere with a different culture to a large national law firm, where I could enjoy a good work-life balance while continuing to grow and challenge myself professionally.  After joining Riverview, I was almost immediately seconded to a FTSE 100 business to work full time in their legal team, which was my role for 15 months, until January 2015.  This was a fabulous opportunity to work in-house for a global organisation, and included a lot of interesting legal work.  I learnt a lot in that time and really enjoyed the work and the people.  The highlight of my secondment was a week-long business trip to Mexico (as our customer’s sole legal representative) to negotiate and finalise a complex long-term services agreement. I currently manage a team of 11 Business Law Executives / Solicitors in relation to a large financial compliance contract review project, which is a great opportunity to develop my people management skills.  The team are great and everyone pulls together to deliver a great service for our customer. Customers: The calibre of customer at Riverview Law is excellent.  We work for a number of global organisations and household names (which came as quite a surprise to me when I found out who they were!). Role: I manage a team of 11 people who review and report on a wide range of commercial agreements, as part of a significant compliance project for a global bank. Complexity of work:  While on secondment, I led on the negotiation of 10 year global framework agreements, and also local agreements in relation to services to be provided in the USA, Canada, France, Mexico and Turkey (amongst others) – which was excellent quality work. In my new role, the contracts we review and report on can be extremely complex with lots of bespoke drafting, or they can be more “standard” agreements on the bank’s standard terms.  We review all kinds of commercial agreements, so the complexity varies significantly on a contract by contract basis.  This allows our team members to gain a solid understanding of commercial agreements, and keeps the work stimulating and challenging. Career prospects, development and learning opportunities: Riverview offers everyone the opportunity to develop their own careers in the way they would like to develop them.  As a solicitor, I really like that fact that there isn’t the usual “single track” option of “making it” (or not!) as a Partner at Riverview – and we certainly don’t operate in a hierarchical way, as your typical traditional law firm might.  I find it really refreshing that a lawyer could apply for a Client Manager (non-legal) role here, for example, and for it not to be seen as a “step down”.  Riverview offers me the opportunity to continually challenge and develop myself professionally.  There is also a lot of change here, as we are growing really quickly, so there is always an opportunity to get involved in a new role or project, which keeps it exciting! I have been very fortunate in my time at Riverview in being given the opportunity to work in-house for the first time (on a secondment basis), which allowed me to develop and learn a great deal about how in-house legal teams work, and how they interact with their commercial colleagues in the business to get deals done.  The company also supports people who want to move between accounts / teams for a new challenge, which means that you can continually challenge yourself and learn new things.  Riverview allows everyone to drive their own careers in whatever direction they want– so you can aim for whatever role you want in the business and go for it! Flexible working: Before I joined Riverview, I worked in a series of large national firms, where it was unusual to leave the office on time, and the culture was to work long hours and record lots of chargeable time in order to meet your billing targets.  Here, there are no chargeable-hours targets, which allows everyone to just focus on doing a really good job for the customer (rather than worrying about how much time you have spent on a matter or how much you have billed).  It also means that I can make plans at the evening and stick to them, and be confident that my weekend plans won’t be overtaken by work demands.  We work hard, and might work late from time to time when needs be, but late nights are definitely not the norm.  I now have a good work-life balance, which I was starting to think just wouldn’t be possible as a lawyer!  I have never looked back!

July 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the July 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of June 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

June 2015 Riverview Law Annual Market Horizon Scanning Seminar videos and slides http://rv-l.com/1GbVUGc June 19 2015

Lawyers, Cabbies, and Uber http://rv-l.com/1RokBer Bloomberg BNA July 02 2015

Robots on the march http://rv-l.com/1elWDPc BBC Technology July 02 2015

Do Less Law – Redefining Value in the Delivery of Legal Services http://rv-l.com/1LW9iWo Corcoran Consulting Group June 02 2015

LFaaS (Law Firm as a Service) III – AI and the shape of law to come http://rv-l.com/1LWaedg Lexology June 01 2015

The legal profession’s Kodak moment? http://rv-l.com/1KUxJnG Lexology 2015

June 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the June 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of May 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

May 2015 Calculated risks: Will algorithms make business boring? http://rv-l.com/1F3TKIl BBC Business May 12 2015 Can the Law Keep Up with Robots? http://rv-l.com/1AWMYsY The Law School, The University of Chicago May 18 2015 What does the attendance at CodeX say about BigLaw?  http://rv-l.com/1Acqcgr Beaton Capital May 19 2015

Stop Calling Legal Service Professionals “Non-Lawyers” http://rv-l.com/1dq5eQh Thomson Reuters May 19 2015

How afraid of Watson the Robot Should We Be? http://rv-l.com/1cG6cr2 New York, News & Politics May 20 2015

Silicon Valley has become a dream factory http://rv-l.com/1HWcYSc Financial Times May 20 2015

Robots Will Overtake People Within 25 Years, Astronomer Royal Warns http://rv-l.com/1MhH9GY Yahoo News May 22 2015

Robots and the Law http://rv-l.com/1MB93OR Slaw May 25 2015 How Lawyers can survive the AI-pocalypse http://rv-l.com/1Kk9CNS 3 Geeks and a Law Blog May 26 2015 Harvard medical professor: Big data and analytics help cure cancer http://rv-l.com/1F3U89R ZDNet May 30 2015    

Riverview Law to expand its Wirral Centre and open a second US office following contract wins with global businesses

Following new contract wins and the expansion of its work with its existing FTSE100 and global customers Riverview Law, the fixed-priced legal services business, is expanding its Wirral Centre which already has nearly 100 team members. It has commenced a new recruitment drive to attract lawyers, and other professionals, from the Chester, Liverpool, Wirral and North-Wales areas.

Riverview Law has also announced that it is opening a second US office to support the significant growth it is experiencing. Opening on 1 August 2015, the New Jersey office will be close to its existing hub in Manhattan, as well as to the technology and entrepreneurial ecosystem surrounding Princeton University.

These developments follow a period of rapid growth which has seen the launch of Riverview Law In-House Solutions which enables customers to license Riverview Law technology, the creation of a separate technology business, and an Artificial Intelligence Partnership with the University of Liverpool.

Katy Robson, Operations Director, says: “Having built solid foundations over the last three years we are expanding rapidly with our sales growing at c100% pa. We can provide our team and new joiners with a long-term, secure career in a rapidly growing business that is helping to change the legal market. Anyone who is looking to work in a positive, innovative, professional and fun environment, whilst working on engaging and challenging work, should call us.”

Andy Daws, Vice President, North America at Riverview Law, says: “Our US expansion, focused on business development for customers wanting access to the English courts, client management and technology, is a testament to our customer-centric business model. Working with our IT and legal colleagues in the UK, we’re transitioning from a tech-enabled to a tech-led business. We’re using existing and emerging technologies to develop easy to use solutions with unrivalled analytics capabilities, all designed to help our own teams and our customers make better and quicker decisions.”

If you are interested in a career at Riverview Law you can learn more about the roles available and what it’s like to work at Riverview Law Join Us.

May 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the May 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of April 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

April 2015

IBM and Samsung Want To Use Blockchains With Everything http://rv-l.com/1EScZb5 Coinbuzz January 2015

A Kodak moment for the legal profession http://rv-l.com/1Ik8EzS Lexology March 24 2015

Legal Technology 3.0 http://rv-l.com/1KOA1lo Huffington Post April 06 2015 #LegalLean… coming to the legal services ecosystem near you? http://rv-l.com/1Jtinmf Beaton Capital April 08 2015 Holmes and Watson – How Artificial Intelligence is Changing Law http://rv-l.com/1Klipwr Digital Journal April 23 2015

Will Powerful Technology Replace Lawyers? http://rv-l.com/1Klh8We Bloomberg BNA May 01 2015

Walking with the new legal giants http://rv-l.com/1bZJxFW Karl Chapman May 05 2015

Walking with the new legal giants

CodeX FutureLaw Conference 2015: Stanford Law School Karl Chapman, Chief Executive, Riverview Law, 5 May 2015

Being an intruder

In the last few years I’ve led a business in the legal market for the first time; Riverview Law was launched on 20 February 2012. Unsurprisingly perhaps, I’ve often felt like an outsider, an intruder. The language, the behaviours, the myths. The aura surrounding the rule of law, law firms and lawyers. Those real and imaginary barriers carefully constructed over generations. At first I rationalised my feelings as those of the newcomer; with all the advantages and disadvantages that this brings. All I had to do, I thought, was to listen and learn. I’d soon work out what was happening. After all, I’d had similar feelings when we entered the recruitment market in 1989 and the HR Advisory Outsourcing market in 2000. As with law, these were markets in which we had no previous experience before we set up our businesses. We just saw big markets, at change points, with unsatisfied customer demand and a fragmented and undercapitalised supply chain. We saw opportunity that we could hopefully realise by keeping things simple, and by focusing on delivering a great service to customers at a fair price. We were prepared to take calculated risks and back our judgments with capital, energy and experimentation. But this time it is different. Fundamentally so. My time at the excellent CodeX 2015 crystallised why.

Law 3.0

As I relax on a flight back to London, with Pink Floyd’s wonderful ‘Wish you were here’ album stimulating my thoughts, I realise that CodeX has given me some language, much of it pinched from the excellent speakers and delegates (thank you!), to articulate what my colleagues and I have felt for a couple of years. Thoughts that have consciously and unconsciously driven us and Riverview Law forward. Thoughts and themes that now draw together well. The opening address at CodeX was delivered by Professor Oliver Goodenough. His subject was “The State of the Art of Legal Technology Circa 2015.” He gave an overview of legal technology, focusing on the various systemic changes confronting the law and legal practice. However, it was how he described the different technological approaches that the various stakeholders in the legal system have been adopting to respond to these changes that made things click. To make his point he kept it simple, using the now clichéd, but as he rightly said still useful terms of 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0. His summary was (and apologies to Oliver if I’ve misquoted him):

  • In Law 1.0 technology empowers the current human players within the current system;
  • In Law 2.0 technology becomes disruptive because it replaces an increasing number of the human players, but again within the current system and operating model; but
  • In Law 3.0 we see a radical re-design and, to a greater or lesser extent, the replacement of the current system with a new system driven by the power of computational technology and new entrants.

The real storm is yet to arrive

Of course, this transition can be applied to any number of other markets; the impact of on-line shopping on retailing, automation in car manufacturing, Uber and airbnb. But there are some catches here for legal, and not just the obvious ones that most incumbents are largely stuck in 1.0, and that many new entrants (particularly the technology companies) are looking to substitute them and deliver Law 3.0 rather than help incumbents become Law 2.0. Many (particularly lawyers) would argue that the legal market is facing something like a perfect storm in the UK following the Legal Services Act 2007, the economic melt-down in 2008, the increasing shift in buying power to the customer and increased competition. But I have always thought that this is a narrow and flawed analysis. Firstly, it confuses regulatory and economic events as the key drivers. In practice the really big themes are that customers have, finally, had enough, and technology is changing the rules of engagement. Put simply, consumers and businesses have paid too much for legal services and there is a crisis in access to justice. Secondly, and most critically, it identifies the wrong date. It wasn’t 2007/2008 that triggered the perfect storm. The seeds for the coming big storm, because today is just a minor shower compared with what happens next, were planted in 1989 when Tim Berners-Lee created the first web browser. The big problem for the legal industry is that it is now having to fight on two fronts, not that many players recognise this. Yes, it is experiencing its own vertical market re-structuring which is driving Law 1.0 to Law 2.0. (about time); and a lot of the legal sector here and in the US is not well positioned to manage this single challenge given the partnership model, weak balance sheets and the culture of law firms. However, and some might say unluckily, at the same time the legal market has to contend with a technology revolution that is profound and which will impact all sectors of the economy. A revolution that has been over 25 years in the making and which saw Time Berners-Lee invent the internet in 1989,  the first commercial web browser in 1993 (Mosaic), the dotcom boom and bust between 1995 and 2000, the creation of Google in 2008 … A revolution that spans big data, through the cloud  to artificial intelligence. To keep things simple, and focusing on its consequences, its output, I’ll describe this revolution as ‘the rise of the knowledge worker’ (see below). Because it is ill prepared, this cocktail of a vertical market change-point with a technology revolution represents a unique challenge for legal incumbents. Even though many incumbents will suffer in all sectors of the economy, other sectors have had a head start when compared with legal. Over the last decade players in other sectors have come to understand real competition and have had to innovate and become agile to succeed. They have invested heavily in technology and automation, whereas legal has not. Most legal technology investment has either been on billing systems, so that six minute units can be recorded accurately, or on IT such as legal practice management systems that attempt to make the existing 1.0 model more efficient.

The rise of the knowledge worker

The technological revolution we’re living through will affect all of us and impact all sectors of the economy and society. Its language includes many current buzz words; big data, the internet of things, expert systems, deep automation, artificial intelligence, blockchains, computational law, the cloud. However, and cutting through the terminology to focus on its practical consequences, one of the key themes in this period will be the rise of the knowledge worker. This is a trend that is as irresistible and as profound as the move from mainframes to PCs, and the impact of mobile and the internet on the way we live and work. The race is on to provide knowledge workers with the tools and virtual assistants that enable them to do a lot of the work today that historically has been done by ‘professionals’, whether they are IT developers, lawyers, HR advisers … etc. We are witnessing the flattening of organisations and the empowering of knowledge workers. We will also see tools put in the hands of customers (whether individuals or businesses) that traditionally were used by professional intermediaries whether in medical, financial, legal or other areas. For example, in the very near future knowledge workers, in any function, who are the subject matter experts and who are closest to the customer and/or business need, will be able to undertake activities that previously required IT departments, change control, IT developers and software houses. Changes that took significant time and cost to deliver; we all have war stories about the difficulty and frustrations of trying to change enterprise wide platforms for even the simplest purposes! Using a legal example as a proxy, imagine that a knowledge worker in a legal team, whose only IT expertise is their ability to use Microsoft Office, can quickly build, maintain and evolve an end-to-end customer, local or complex global workflow and process including: (a)    Instruction management (what legal support, if any, does the individual / business unit actually need?); through (b)   Triage (if legal support is required who should it be undertaken by, internally or externally, given the requirement and its risk, time, cost profile?); to (c)    Case management and document creation (how can the matter be managed consistently, using the right documents and with the appropriate data captured consistently, whoever is doing the work?); and (d)   Reporting and Analytics (how is real time activity published so resource can be managed, and how are trends and data mining undertaken to pre-empt future risk, reduce cost, evolve the operating model?). This redefines the traditional IT and business operating model. It changes the way legal and other functions operate. This model is available today. We already operate this way in Riverview Law by deploying easy to use expert systems, automation, Artificial Intelligence and analytics. Internally we call this the ‘configuration not coding’ revolution; using knowledge workers with easy to use configuration tools to manage day-to-day requirements rather than IT developers with programming skills. Yes, we still need IT programmers. Yes, we still need lawyers and other professionals. But their focus changes. IT programmers help build the tools and platforms that unleash knowledge workers and the business. Lawyers start to play the real added value parts in the legal process. This approach also helps us and our customers address the absolutely critical need for accurate data. In the ‘big (medium or small) data’ debate, if data (content) is king, the ability to properly understand and apply it (context) is the kingdom. Of course, the keys to the kingdom include capturing the data accurately, consistently, and easily in real-time. Which neatly brings us all the way back to workflows and processes which need to be automated and amended easily, quickly and cost-effectively, by knowledge workers, so that they reflect business needs.

Parallel universes

This all partly explains the challenges we sometimes experience at Riverview Law as we engage with the legal industry. With notable exceptions, in particular our conversations with in-house teams and a few legal leaders who ‘get it’, it has felt as if two conversations have been occurring in parallel. On one side are the current legal players (Law 1.0) with their pre-occupation with PEP, lateral hires, international expansion, mergers and, particularly in the US, maintaining the regulatory status quo. Their focus is on using IT to improve their current operating and business model. Their pre-occupation is with Law 1.0 and a desire, on the part of many, to delay Law 2.0. On the other side are the new entrants, including technology companies and businesses like Riverview Law (and some in-house teams), who have brought disciplines, business models and technology from other sectors. These players are focused not just on creating a profitable Law 2.0 platform but also on using this platform to transition quickly to Law 3.0. They, we, use the language of the customer, the culture of one team, and the application of existing and emerging technologies including automation, analytics and computational argumentation to drive quality and improve efficiency. It is no surprise that it is law firms buying law firms (a Law 1.0 Law 2.0 strategy). Why would new entrants or technology companies encumber themselves with legacy when the future requires a different model? It is also no surprise that in-house teams are adopting technology faster than most of the supply chain.

What an opportunity

Of course, for legal there is a big irony in all this. Over many decades the legal market has not been subjected to the same competitive pressures that other sectors of the economy have experienced. Whatever lawyers and law firms may think they have benefitted from protective regulations that enabled excess profits. This, inevitably, injected complacency in many of its incumbents and reduced innovation and creativity. The irony is that the very regulation that protected Law 1.0 firms has also sown the seeds for their substitution as Law 2.0 and, more critically, Law 3.0 models takeover. It would be difficult for many law firms to respond to the emerging competition in the legal vertical anyway, but when this is combined with technology upheaval all bets are off. But this does not mean that there aren’t great opportunities, because there are. It also doesn’t mean that some Law 1.0 players won’t successfully transition to Law 2.0 and Law 3.0, because some will. The legal market is a global market and, as with all markets, there is no silver bullet and there is no one-size-fits-all model that will succeed. Moreover, in England and Wales we have been dealt a good hand by our legislators and regulators. If we can combine the best of our regulatory model with the best of existing and emerging technologies, particularly those coming out of the US, then we are in a good position to dominate the global legal market in the first half of this century. By focusing on Law 3.0 and working with Silicon Valley we can become the new legal giants. What a great time to be a technology-led legal services business. Thank you CodeX, I will be back.

Riverview Law to award up to 10 training contracts in 2015

Riverview Law, the fixed-priced legal services business, has opened applications for its 2015 solicitor training scheme, in which up to 10 training contracts will be awarded to current members of staff. This is the second year the business will be offering training contracts since becoming an ABS in 2014 with seven being awarded last year. Director of Legal Services, Steven Zdolyny, said Riverview is committed to training employees throughout all areas of the business: ‘As we continue to grow and win business with global corporations it is important we recruit, develop and progress the talent within Riverview Law. By offering opportunities such as training contracts to existing members of the Riverview team we are ensuring that the candidates embody the Riverview Law values and culture.’ Steven continued by saying: ‘It’s been a pleasure to see the individuals who were awarded the first training contracts in 2014 grow and develop so much since September. I am proud to be working in a business where we nurture talent across the board whether that be through training contracts, apprenticeships or other training routes.’ The successful applicants will begin their training contracts on 28th September 2015. Anyone interested in a career at Riverview Law can find out more via the careers page on their website here.

April 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the April 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of March 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

March 2015

Fresh thinking on the evolving BigLaw – NewLaw taxonomy http://rv-l.com/1H3Qjqh Beaton Capital January 15 2015 IBM Watson: 10 New Jobs For Cognitive Computing http://rv-l.com/1JnHUgT Information Week March 12 2015

Billy Beane’s five lessons for business success http://rv-l.com/1Cnsfs1 The Guardian October 24 2014

Humans Need Not Apply http://rv-l.com/1H47hF6 YouTube August 13 2014

Is your lawyer smarter than IBM’s Watson? http://rv-l.com/1CUmtS4 IT News March 31 2015 Watson is the ‘Third Era of computing’ says IBM director Steve Abrams http://rv-l.com/1PjdSyQ The Drum March 30 2015

H&R Block Forced to Shut Down Immigrant Document Service by the Bar http://rv-l.com/1NT4b6P Lawyering Blog March 14 2015

Jeremy Clarkson – sacked by the BBC – tips for dealing with misconduct in the workplace

Jeremy Clarkson’s sacking by the BBC this week has caused a divide in public opinion. Did Director General Tony Hall act correctly when he sacked one of the BBC’s most successful presenters or was he left with no other option? Public opinion is one thing, but Tony Hall will have had to consider the duty of care the BBC owes to its staff and the BBC’s internal procedures for dealing with such issues. Employers are often faced with a similar question when a member of staff ‘crosses a line’ as Tony Hall described Mr Clarkson’s alleged attack on a work colleague. Employers have a duty of care towards staff and if action is required to be taken as a result of misconduct, employers have to navigate a range of employment regulations to ensure a fair procedure is followed and to avoid potential litigation. Jeremy Clarkson is likely to have been self-employed and as such it appears the BBC has followed its internal procedures and confirmed that the popular TV host’s contract would not be renewed. Many businesses have to deal with disciplinary issues regarding their employees – the procedures for dealing with employee misconduct issues can be more complex than when dealing with self-employed individuals, as employees are afforded additional employment law protection. We’ve considered some top tips on how to deal with employee disciplinary issues in the workplace.

Top tips

Follow a road map – once you become aware of a disciplinary issue, take some time to prepare your approach. Familiarise yourself with your company disciplinary policies and follow them. Refer to the Acas Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures. Consider whether there have been any similar cases in the past whereby a precedent has been set. Consider who is in the driving seat – Designate roles within the process at the outset so that the right people are involved at each stage to conduct investigations, hearings and appeals. Ideally, to ensure impartiality, you should have a different senior member of staff conduct each stage in the process. Don’t stall – it’s essential that disciplinary issues are dealt with promptly. This is particularly the case when you are dealing with a potential gross misconduct issue. Consider whether suspension of the employee is necessary. Be aware of your reaction times – a disciplinary process can take many twists and turns. New information or evidence may come to light at any point in the process. Make sure you react to new information and be prepared to conduct further investigations if necessary, before moving onto the next stage in the process. Complete a log book – you should record all stages in the process and all evidence that you have relied upon should be documented. If the case did result in an Employment Tribunal claim being made against your company you will need to demonstrate that a decision to dismiss was fair. Often Employment Tribunal cases will not be heard until over a year after the event. Memories fade and witnesses may have left the business. Consider documenting the decision making process and outline what factors impacted the decision to dismiss. Get underneath the bonnet – Don’t pre judge the case. Listen impartially to the employee and any witnesses. Fully consider the factual evidence before you prior to making a decision. An Employment Tribunal could deem a dismissal to be unfair if they determine that the dismissal was pre-determined.   The Acas Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures has recently been revised. You can see a copy of the revised version here.  

Proposed Increase in Court Fees: A deterrent to spurious claims or a barrier to justice?

Every Claimant, who issues legal proceedings through the court system, is required to pay a court issue fee (this also applies to Defendants who issue a counterclaim). The issue fee payable is directly linked to the sum claimed. Following a consultation in December 2013, on proposals to increase court fees in a number of areas, the Ministry of Justice has recently announced it will increase issue fees for money claims from 9 March 2015. The fee increases for money claims means:

  • The fee for claims from £1 – £9,999 will remain unchanged;
  • The fee for claims from £10,000 – £199,999 will be five per cent of the claim;
  • The fee for claims for £200,000 and above will be fixed at £10,000; and
  • There will be a 10 per cent discount on fees for claims from £10,000 – £99,999 filed electronically.

The proposed increase in court fees has sparked much debate. The table below gives an idea of the percentage by which some court issue fees will increase. In some instances, the court issue fee will rise by over 600%.

Value of claim £ Fee now £ (paper) New fee £ Increase in fee £ % increase
20,000 610 1,000 390 64%
40,000 610 2,000 1,390 228%
90,000 910 4,500 3,590 395%
150,000 1,315 7,500 6,185 470%
190,000 1,315 9,500 8,185 622%
200,000 1,515 10,000 8,725 576%
250,000 1,720 10,000 8,280 481%

  The reasoning behind the proposed increases The Ministry of Justice hope to generate £120 million annually from the proposed increased court fees, as there is an argument that people using the court system do not currently pay for the full service they receive. The deficit last year was around £100 million. Accordingly, the government has taken the view that the courts cannot be immune from tough decisions in order to bring public spending in line with what they can afford. The government has explained that its proposals to increase court fees will not affect those bringing a small claim i.e. a claim under £10,000. Instead it will only affect claimants issuing claims for large monetary sums who will require a more extensive service from the court. There is also an argument that increasing the court fees will act as a deterrent to those bringing a spurious/unfounded claim, and will ensure that claimants properly consider the merits of their claim before taking the decision to issue legal proceedings. On that basis, the government has argued that it does not envisage a decrease in genuine claims. Opposition to the proposed increase in fees The Law Society has issued a pre-action protocol letter for judicial review to challenge the government’s decision to increase court fees by such a significant amount. The Law Society has argued that a substantial proportion of civil litigation should be funded by the public purse rather than wholly by the litigants themselves, as it is in the interests of the civilised society in which we live for litigants to seek redress through the court system rather than ‘take matters into their own hands’. In addition, the Law Society has questioned how the government will utilise the increased revenue and, if there is to be a major investment into the court system, queried whether this should actually lead to a decrease in court fees moving forward. The issue has sparked a lively debate in the House of Lords. One speaker has pointed out that the imposition of substantial fees has led to an 80% reduction in employment appeal tribunal applications and a 90% reduction in sex discrimination cases. The concern is that civil claims will follow this pattern and that claimants with legitimate claims will no longer be able to afford to seek recourse through the justice system. Watch this space… The debate as to whether the increase in court fees will act as a deterrent to spurious claims or as a barrier to justice looks set to continue. The court fees will increase on 9 March 2015. However, with this change comes fierce opposition. We will have to watch this space to see how this issue is resolved.  

Riverview Law opens Manchester office

Wirral-based Riverview Law has today opened its first Manchester office. The office located at The Hive in the City’s Northern Quarter, will initially be occupied by up to 20 Riverview Law staff. The business plans to double the number of staff in Manchester over the next twelve months. The new opening comes at a time of significant expansion, which has seen revenue growth of over 100% pa in the last few years fuelled by contract wins with large global organisations.  Kate Thomsett, Head of HR at Riverview Law, says: “This is an exciting day for Riverview Law. Manchester has a thriving legal community and like Wirral, will be a great catchment area for us to expand our team and keep ahead of market demand for our services.” Tim Newns, Chief Executive of MIDAS said “Riverview Law’s decision to open a Manchester office is a testament to the city’s highly evolved financial and professional services sector. The firm joins a large number of legal companies that have chosen to set up an office in Manchester, attracted by the talent, expertise and market opportunity that the city offers. We welcome them to the city, and look forward to continuing to support them as they build their presence” Riverview Law currently has a range of vacancies in its Manchester and Wirral offices for commercial solicitors, business law executives, client managers and IT professionals.  Further information can be found at the Riverview Law Join Us pages.

March 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the March 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of February 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

February 2015

“Think-time” topics for legal departments http://rv-l.com/17NGqPk Thomson Reuters January 2015 Clash of the Titans: Big Four vs MBB vs BigLaw http://rv-l.com/1M35wXX Beaton Capital February 16 2015 Legal Efficiency 2015 http://rv-l.com/1F5awck Raconteur February 2015 A win-win situation http://rv-l.com/1GfCMN6 International Bar Association February 2015 Insurers urged to seize ‘opportunity’ as driverless cars hit UK roads http://rv-l.com/1aJTOWx Post February 16 2015 BigLaw resists techo evolution over fear of losing billable hours http://rv-l.com/1M4JKVy The Global Legal Post February 20 2015 This is the Boat: Stop Waiting for the Next Big Thing — By David Curle http://rv-l.com/17NNmvO Thomson Reuters February 24 2015 Consultancy chief challenges Susskind impact technology http://rv-l.com/1zEwgXI Legal Futures February 25 2015

Legal Efficiency Report as seen in The Times – Case Study on Riverview Law & University of Liverpool

Further to recent announcements regarding technology and Artificial Intelligence, Riverview Law and the University of Liverpool are featured in a case study on page 4 of the Raconteur Legal Efficiency Report published in The Times. The below is originally from the ‘Legal Efficiency Report’ published by Raconteur Media on 19th February 2015 in The Times. The Agent Applications, Research and Technology (Agent ART) Group at Liverpool University is a leading centre of pure and applied research in autonomous agents and multi-agent systems. In everyday English, this is the science underpinning the development of robots, either real or virtual, capable of making their own decisions in complex situations, including conflicts with other robots. This is a field at the cutting edge of information technology. At first sight the Agent ART Group appears to have little in common with Riverview Law, a new-style legal business set up in Liverpool in 2010, which has DLA  Piper as a minority shareholder, and provides legal advisory outsourcing and technology solutions to in-house legal functions of large corporations. Last month, however, the firm announced it had set up a “knowledge transfer partnership” with the University of Liverpool to find ways of developing the university’s artificial intelligence (AI) expertise in the legal field. The firm says the partnership will enable it to apply a range of leading-edge computer science expertise in areas such as text processing, network analysis, computational argumentation and data mining. “A primary objective of this project is to automate some of the cognitive abilities of knowledge workers to provide organisations with intelligent decision support tools,” Agent ART says. The hope is to create artificial intelligence software capable of automating routine legal tasks, speeding up and cutting the price of services. In particular, the firm is working with Katie Atkinson, reader in the Agent ART Group of the university’s Department of Computer Science. She describes her research as concerning “computational models of argument, with a particular focus on persuasive argumentation in practical reasoning and how this can be applied in domains such as e-democracy, law and agent systems”. Dr Atkinson says it is a good fit. “We are delighted to be working with such an innovative company as Riverview Law. From our first meeting we were struck by the commitment its team has to the application of technology, not only in its own business, but also in the way it delivers services to its global customers. Meetings with those customers and the wider Riverview Law team simply confirmed our desire to work with them and show how we can commercialise our research,” she says. Karl Chapman, chief executive of Riverview Law, comments: “Over the last 18 months, as we developed our thinking in the AI and expert systems field, we were delighted to find such relevant world-class expertise on our doorstep – North-West England really is becoming the centre of the legal universe. We are very focused on providing expert systems and tools that support knowledge work, and the way AI and such systems can help our teams and our customers make quicker and better decisions.” Read the full report here.

February 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Welcome to the February 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of January 2015 and previous months. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

January 2015

Law firms failing to meet threat of market disruption, says report http://rv-l.com/1vpeeh8 Legal Futures February 02 2015 Questions about Uberisation of professional services http://rv-l.com/1zevDbG Beaton Capital February 02 2015 Doctor Watson will see you now, if IBM wins in Congress http://rv-l.com/1uWL3My Pittsburgh Post-Gazette January 29 2015 AP’s ‘robot journalists’ are writing their own stories now http://rv-l.com/1ArtSd1 The Verge January 29 2015 Applying Clayton Christensen’s theories to BigLaw vs NewLaw http://rv-l.com/1KqIJnZ Beaton Capital January 12 2015 The on-demand economy http://rv-l.com/1KqGT6D The Economist January 03 2015 Demystifying Artificial Intelligence http://rv-l.com/1zA6TcO Deloitte University Press November 04 2014 From Big Law to Lean Law http://rv-l.com/1DEI0gV Social Science Research Network 2013

Riverview Law plans Manchester office opening following 100% revenue growth

Following revenue growth of over 100% and a host of new contract wins, Wirral-based Riverview Law is to open a Manchester office. Kate Thomsett, Head of HR at Riverview Law says: “Our main office is in Bromborough, Wirral, and with further significant growth anticipated in 2015, we will continue to grow this office rapidly. However, we’ve chosen to also open a new Manchester office as part of our expansion strategy. Like Wirral, Manchester is a great catchment area for the skills we’re looking for – solicitors, paralegals, client managers, IT professionals.” The business is currently sourcing a suitable location and expects to open in the City during Q1 2015. Alongside the opening, the business expects to recruit an additional 30 people across both offices. Kate Thomsett adds: “Customers are quickly adopting our approach to legal service delivery. They buy-in to our culture and our fixed-priced technology and data-led model. We’re looking for talented professionals who like spending time with customers and who also know how to have fun and work as part of one team.” The opening of the Manchester office follows on from the recent launch of ‘Riverview Law In-house’, which includes a range of software modules that help in-house legal teams in large organisations manage matters, evolve their operating model and improve their effectiveness and efficiency. Earlier this month Riverview Law also announced a partnership with the University of Liverpool to exploit its Artificial Intelligence expertise. Kate Thomsett says: “We invest heavily in our team so that they can become the future leaders of our business. We only offer training contracts to existing team members and we have up to 10 training contracts beginning in September 2015. Budding solicitors should join us before March 2015 to be able to apply for one of these places.” Steven Zdolyny, Director of Legal Services at Riverview Law, says: “We offer great quality work with FTSE100 companies, flexible working hours and without the pressure of time recording and billing targets. One of our recent private practice recruits described our culture as ‘liberating’. We’d encourage anyone to get in touch if they’re looking to develop their career within a positive, energetic and innovative environment.” For more information on current vacancies and joining Riverview Law visit the Join Us page.

January 2015 Market Horizon Scanning

Happy New Year and welcome to the January 2015 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of the last month – December 2014 and one from 1st January 2015. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

December 2014

Does the UK know something we don’t about alternative business structures? http://rv-l.com/1BFvcWo ABA Journal January 01 2015 New report looks into Global healthcare decision support and IBM Watson http://rv-l.com/1BFuclb WhaTech December 22 2014 Big law firms hiring poor-performing barristers, analysts claim http://rv-l.com/14rU7SZ Legal Futures December 22 2014 People vs Technology: A Modern Prizefight http://rv-l.com/1BFtKn2 SeytLines December 17 2014 What we read about deep learning is just the tip of the iceberg http://rv-l.com/1IksAzl Gigaom December 15 2014 A Broader View of Change in the Legal Marketplace http://rv-l.com/1AlfgeK Legal Mosaic December 15 2014 Report: artificial intelligence will cause “structural collapse” of law firms by 2030 http://rv-l.com/1xNCXsH Legal Futures December 1 2014 More and Less: In our second annual in-house survey, corporate legal teams are continuing to grow amid strong demand for their counsel. How high can general counsel build their empires? http://rv-l.com/1944Q4T The In-House Lawyer December 2014 Humans Need Not Apply http://rv-l.com/1KhI8aU CGP Grey August 13 2014

Riverview Law and University of Liverpool announce Artificial Intelligence partnership

Riverview Law, the fixed priced legal services business, has entered into a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with the University of Liverpool designed to leverage the University’s Artificial Intelligence expertise in the legal market. Alongside recently announced initiatives, the KTP enables Riverview Law to apply a range of leading-edge computer science expertise in areas as diverse as Artificial Intelligence (AI), text processing, network analysis, computational argumentation and data mining. A primary objective of this project is to automate some of the cognitive abilities of knowledge workers to provide organisations with intelligent decision support tools. This announcement follows on from the recent launch of ‘Riverview Law In-house’, which includes a range of software modules that help In-house legal teams in large organisations manage matters, evolve their operating model and improve their effectiveness and efficiency. It also follows confirmation that Riverview Law is setting-up a separate technology business to exploit the software that it has built and the IP that it has and is creating. Dr Katie Atkinson, Reader in the Agent Applications, Research, and Technology (Agent ART) Group of the Department of Computer Science at the University of Liverpool, says: “We are delighted to be working with such an innovative company as Riverview Law. From our first meeting we were struck by the commitment its team has to the application of technology, not only in its own business but also in the way it delivers services to its global customers. Meetings with those customers and the wider Riverview Law team simply confirmed our desire to work with them and show how we can commercialise our research.” Katie is also Program Chair for the 2015 ICAIL conference of the International Association for Artificial Intelligence and Law. Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law said: “Over the last 18 months, as we developed our thinking in the AI and expert systems field, we were delighted to find such relevant world-class expertise on our doorstep – North-West England really is becoming the centre of the legal universe! This is another big step in the evolution and growth of Riverview Law. We are very focused on providing expert systems and tools that support knowledge work and the way AI and such systems can help our teams and our customers make quicker and better decisions.”

Under the microscope: Louise, HR Administrator

Under the microscope here is Louise who is a HR Administrator. We get asked numerous questions about what it’s like to work at Riverview Law so we decided to profile some of the different roles throughout our business. We have published a series of case studies on Riverview Law employees which will give you a feel for the people within our business, the roles they undertake and what it’s like to work here.

Me: Louise 

My role: HR Administrator

What I did before joining: 

Prior to working in Riverview Law I spent 9 months working as a Client Relationship Coordinator in a HR company, this role followed on straight from my degree at Edge Hill University where I studied Early Childhood Studies.

Why I joined:    

I joined Riverview Law because I had heard nothing but positive feedback about the business. It was clear that the culture here was of key importance and that all current employees could vouch for that. Having not worked in this line of work before, it was all completely new to me. However, straight away I started noticing and understanding just how successful Riverview Law was becoming, and how much change was taking place. Being involved in this is a fantastic opportunity which would be hard to turn down.

What surprised me most in my first week at Riverview Law:

For me my first week at Riverview Law was a massive success. The week long induction that took place really displayed the six values. I met a lot of members of staff, all carrying out different roles within the business.  Time was taken to ensure that we all knew every individual is a key part of the business and all of this was done whilst having fun

What I’ve learnt since joining:

Since joining Riverview Law I have grown massively in my HR knowledge and my personal confidence. I have learnt that support is here any time, and everyone is happy to help! I have been exposed to a massive amount in my time here and Ihave been encouraged every step of the way to ask questions, give feedback and succeed in what I am doing. Not only have I learnt a huge amount in my role, I have also had the opportunity to learn about other roles within the business.

What I enjoy most about my job:

I enjoy coming into the office every day to such a pleasant atmosphere with positive and friendly people. Having such great colleagues makes coming in every day so much easier, it really is One Team! I also appreciate how many opportunities I am given to develop my HR knowledge, and learn more and more on a daily basis. The support given from my manager and other members of the team really encourages me to push myself.

How Riverview Law compares with other places I’ve worked:

I have never worked in a place where literally every individual is appreciated. The whole business regularly get updates from our Chief Executive; this allows us all to know exactly where we are as a business, and ask any questions we may have. The social side of the business is not like I’ve experienced in any previous jobs. Riverview encourages social events, many of them being organised by our Social Committee. The business understands that it is important for all employees to connect both inside and outside of work.

Why I’m still here:

There are many reasons why I am still here, the main reason being my personal development. I have noticed massively how much I have learnt since joining the business and the encouragement I have received since day one to progress within the business.  I am treated as an individual and been offered a huge amount of support to get to where I want to be. Also of course, the people here are a definite reason to stay!

What I’d say to potential applicants:

I would recommend to anyone thinking of applying to just do it! Whatever role it is for, it does not matter. When Riverview says they encourage people to be themselves, they really do mean it!

Creation of Technology Business and launch of Software as a Service solutions for In-house teams

Riverview Law, the fixed priced legal services business, has launched ‘Riverview Law In-house’, a range of software modules that help In-house legal teams in large organisations manage matters, evolve their operating model and improve their effectiveness and efficiency. The Riverview Law In-house software modules complement the existing range of services that Riverview Law offers to large businesses, all of which are experiencing rapid growth. Riverview Law also announces that it is setting-up a separate technology business to exploit the software that it has built and the IP that it has and is creating. The Riverview Law ‘In-house’ modules announced today are just the first of a range of solutions that will be brought to market that have been built using the Riverview Law technology and IP. Riverview Law In-house Riverview Law In-house packages the Riverview Law service delivery and operating model into software modules that can be tailored to any organisation. These modules can be purchased by in-house legal functions individually or in any combination. The In-house modules complement Riverview Law’s existing offerings but are stand-alone and do not require a customer to use Riverview Law’s managed services or other solutions. The initial modules include Instruction Manager which helps manage the flow and the triage of matters into and out of the in-house function and Contract Manager which manages new contract creation from start to finish via multi-language and multi-channels (desktop, tablet, mobile).  The Analytics module provides detailed management information and business insight. Implementation Manager supports and drives the set-up and go-live process and Configuration Manager enables in-house control and management of the workflows, processes and reporting. More modules will be launched in 2015. Riverview Law Technology Business This new business, which will be set-up as a separate entity, will focus on exploiting Riverview Law IP and will be free to license it to any third party including competitors to Riverview Law. Over the last few years it has become clear to the Board of Riverview Law that its technology, built from the user-up not the developer down, has much wider application. The new business will seek to exploit these opportunities. Karl Chapman, Chief Executive of Riverview Law said: “In launching these modules we are following customer demand. Over the last two years many GCs and legal teams have asked if they can license our technology for their internal use. Now they can. The great thing is that our technology is proven and low risk because our teams use the same model to deliver our managed service solutions successfully to existing customers globally. We have always understood the need to combine people, processes and technology effectively. Our service delivery model is built on this approach and so are these modules.” “Creating a technology business that is separate from Riverview Law is a big and natural step for us. We use technology widely in our business. It is a core part of our operating model and mind-set. However, creating a global technology business requires both a different business model and different skills. By establishing this as a separate business the Board now has maximum flexibility for how it develops, manages and grows this area while retaining our focus on growing Riverview Law.”

December 2014 Market Horizon Scanning  

Welcome to the December 2014 edition of the Riverview Law Market Scanning Report. As part of our market and horizon scanning activities we have always collected and circulated internally relevant legal market articles, commentaries, reports and blogs. When we shared this data with a GC he asked why we didn’t routinely share this with him because he’d find it invaluable. It was a good question! So, we now publish this report which, as you’ll see below, contains links to what we think are the most interesting and relevant legal market commentaries of the last month – November 2014. Best wishes,

The Riverview Law R&D Team

November 2014

CLO Survey Has Bad News for Outside Counsel http://rv-l.com/1rZUglE Corporate Counsel November 5 2014

Law firm ownership and lawyer independence http://rv-l.com/1wLaiVQ Law 21 November 7 2014

What could be the global impact of the UK’s Legal Services Act? http://rv-l.com/1BgQGvK Oxford University Press blog November 8 2014

Importance of targets and metrics for legal teams http://rv-l.com/1oCB5ls Laissa Oy November 10 2014

Everything You Need to Know About the Past, Present, and Future of Legaltech in Canada http://rv-l.com/12zFxrT Techvibes November 10 2014 Can the Big4 succeed in law this time? http://rv-l.com/1CIBMQy Beaton Capital November 11 2014 Legal Futures report: City firms embracing innovation http://rv-l.com/1xIDgUp Legal Futures November 11 2014 Pandora’s Box Or Panacea? Lessons From The U.K.’s Liberalization Of Law-Firm Ownership http://rv-l.com/1w3CEfI Forbes November 13 2014 Competition blurring sectors http://rv-l.com/1zpbOvP McLaren November 20 2014

The Changing Face of Work and Workplace Learning http://rv-l.com/1FPODN5 LinkedIn November 27 2014

 

What are the I.T. specifications of Riverview Law In-house?

Featured Video Play Icon

The Riverview Law In-house solution is robust, scalable and secure. It is fully compliant with ISO27001 and BS9001. It is a hosted solution operating from a Tier 3 data centre. It has full integrity, access control policies, active-to-active fail-over and Disaster Recovery. Riverview Law has a lot of experience in working with the I.T. and risk teams in large organisations to structure the set-up so that it is fully compliant with whatever the Information and Security Requirements are of any organisation.

What in-house modules are available?

Featured Video Play Icon

The modules range from ‘Instruction Manager’, through ‘Contract Manager’ to ‘Analytics’. Super-Users access the ‘Configuration Manager’ module. Initial implementation and set-up support is provided by a Riverview Law dedicated team using the ‘Implementation Manager’ module. Customers can buy one or any combination of the modules. Each module is tailored to the behaviours and processes of an individual organisation. This approach helps minimise initial change, increase user acceptance and reduce implementation risk.

How does Riverview Law in-house help in-house functions evolve their operating model?

Featured Video Play Icon

Riverview Law In-house is a catalyst for change. It helps in-house functions start and continue their transformation journey in a structured and effective way, starting with where they are today but with a clear view of where they want to get to. It allows them to take one or more of the proven Riverview Law technology modules and tailor them to their business. In a low risk way it helps them automate existing processes and free the time of their team so that they have space to evolve their operating model.

How do we help in-house teams set up and implement Riverview Law In-house?

Featured Video Play Icon

Riverview Law experts support the implementation process. In a structured way, recognising that these are as much services as they are technology projects, a Riverview Law dedicated implementation team works with each customer to ensure that the solutions are introduced smoothly and effectively. As importantly, the solutions are also set-up to be self-maintained by each customer with additional day-to-day support being provided by the experienced Riverview Law Customer Service Centre which provides both user and technical assistance.

Is it easy for in-house teams, lawyers, paralegals and project managers to use and maintain the platform?

Featured Video Play Icon

The Riverview Law In-house modules are easy to use for a lawyer, paralegal or legal assistant because they have been built from the user up and not from the IT developer down. They have been built so that they can be set-up, maintained and evolved by Super-Users who are not IT professionals or developers. The key philosophy underpinning the Riverview Law software development model is the emphasis on configuration rather than coding, an emphasis which enables a quick and effective response to trends or regulatory or other change.

What is Riverview Law In-house?

Featured Video Play Icon

Riverview Law In-house comprises a range of modules designed to help in-house legal teams make better and quicker decisions. It helps them control the legal process, whether legal support is delivered internally and/or by third parties. It helps in-house teams improve their efficiency and effectiveness by automating existing processes and tailoring workflows to fit their business and their way of working. The modules are easy to use and configure which ensures the legal function stays in control in a cost-effective way.

Under the microscope: Heather, Commercial Litigation Lawyer

Under the microscope here is Heather who is a Commercial Litigation Lawyer. We get asked numerous questions about what it’s like to work at Riverview Law so we decided to profile some of the different roles throughout our business. We have published a series of case studies on Riverview Law employees which will give you a feel for the people within our business, the roles they undertake and what it’s like to work here.

Me: Heather

My role: Commercial Litigation Lawyer

What I did before joining:

I worked at Hill Dickinson for 5 years. My first 2 years were spent as a paralegal in the Commercial Litigation department. This role involved managing my own caseload of debt recovery matters and assisting with complex litigation projects. I subsequently spent 2 years as a trainee solicitor. Upon completion of my training contract, I qualified into the Commercial Litigation department. My role involved managing my own caseload of small claims; fast track; insolvency and debt recovery matters. I was also heavily involved in assisting with multi-track litigation in the High Court, Technology and Construction Court and Supreme Court.

Why I joined:     

When I attended interviews for new Commercial Litigation roles, it was Riverview which ticked every box for me. The friendly laid-back culture was immediately apparent. But, more importantly, it was clear that the business was ‘going places’; not only did Riverview have an impressive customer portfolio, but they were also prepared to invest time and money in the development of their staff. This was exactly what I was looking for and I accepted the position at Riverview immediately.

What surprised me most in my first week at Riverview Law:

I was surprised at the unique induction programme, as I was not only provided with training on how to do my day-to-day job, but I was also provided with guidance on the Riverview values and culture in my Moments of Truth session.

What I’ve learnt since joining:

I have learnt to put the customer at the forefront of everything I do. When working at a traditional law firm, it is very easy to become side-tracked by financial targets and time recording. As these elements are not present at Riverview, it is much easier to remember that the most important aspect of what we do as lawyers is to provide the most efficient and effective legal solutions to our customers. I have also become increasingly aware that the use of technology is a fundamental part of providing a legal service, as technology can help our customers to make important long-term adjustments within their business.

What I enjoy most about my job:

Riverview is underpinned by 6 key values which it encourages all its employees to adhere to. The values are for employees to be innovative, enthusiastic, individual, professional, inquisitive and part of one team. It is these values which make up the unique Riverview culture, and it is the culture and the people which makes working at Riverview so enjoyable.

How Riverview Law compares with other places I’ve worked: 

I had previously only worked in a ‘traditional law firm’. Riverview is completely different. Everyone has a voice in Riverview irrespective of what job title they have, as Riverview recognise that each and every individual’s role within the business is of equal importance. Riverview also encourages a working environment which is fun. The best example of this is probably the free ice cream we have in the kitchen!!

Why I’m still here: 

Riverview strikes the balance that I am looking for in my career. I am encouraged to develop myself, work hard and to be professional, whilst alongside FTSE 100 customers. However, I am also encouraged to work in a relaxed, fun culture with a great bunch of people.

What I’d say to potential applicants:

Riverview is a completely different model to many other law firms and is changing and growing at a rapid pace. If potential applicants are prepared to embrace the inevitable changes which are currently facing the legal market, and also want to be part of a new, fresh and exciting legal business, then they should definitely apply to Riverview!!

Under the microscope: Claire, Software Development Team Leader

Under the microscope here is Claire who is a Software Development Team Leader. We get asked numerous questions about what it’s like to work at Riverview Law so we decided to profile some of the different roles throughout our business. We have published a series of case studies on Riverview Law employees which will give you a feel for the people within our business, the roles they undertake and what it’s like to work here.

Me: Claire 

My role: I recently got promoted to Software Development Team Leader.

What I did before joining:

Before joining Riverview, I worked for 2 previous companies. The first was an IT company specialising in the development of customisations for Project Server, SharePoint and CRM. Clients were mainly public Sector organisations and my responsibilities included requirement gathering, development and the deployment of solutions. My second role was for a company with a background in engineering and cabling. My role changed significantly there and I was more heavily involved in custom application development for internal purposes such as project administration and human resource management. I was also responsible for general IT support and some project management.

Why I joined:    

Although I had learnt a lot in my previous role, it involved a lot of travelling and there was little room for progression or personal growth. I joined Riverview because I wanted a new challenge and I also wanted an opportunity where I could have the chance to further my career. It was really important that I worked somewhere with a positive atmosphere where I could improve my skills and be part of a cohesive team. After going for an interview and finding out for about the role and ambitions of the company I knew it would be right fit for me.

What surprised me most in my first week at Riverview Law:

What struck me first was the friendliness of the staff and the values that are instilled from the top of the organisation down. There was a really positive vibe and the support and structure that was in place for new starters was something I was not used to.

What I’ve learnt since joining:

Having been used to working independently in the past, the biggest learning experience for me has been working as part of a team and collaborating in order to achieve our goals. This has been really rewarding and I feel I’m really gelling with my colleagues. From a technical point of view I have improved my knowledge of CRM 2011 and 2013 and I’ve also gained valuable experience of managing and leading projects.

What I enjoy most about my job:

I recently got promoted to Software Development Team Leader which  has given me the opportunity to think of new ways for us to bond as a team and get the best out of each other. I’ve really enjoyed thinking outside the box and coming up with new ideas to do this. I find I get a lot of job satisfaction from seeing our team succeed and it motivates me to keep trying new things which help us do our jobs better but can also be fun and original.

How Riverview Law compares with other places I’ve worked:

In previous roles, I’ve found that staff are not always valued and given the support and recognition they need. At Riverview there is strong leadership and well defined structure for staff to give regular feedback and raise any concerns they have through their line manager. This helps ensure people are happier and more content with their jobs and I’ve always felt that happier teams are more productive. There is also set of values that are instilled throughout the company which is genuinely adhered – again this is not something I’ve experienced in the past.

Why I’m still here:

I love working with my team and they give me plenty of motivation to stick around!   I also feel as though there is support to help me improve my skills and achieve my goals and aspirations within the company and so I don’t have any reason to leave.

What I’d say to potential applicants:

If you have worked in other places where you have not been appreciated and you have a strong work ethic, a willingness to learn and want to be part of a cohesive team of lovely people, then this is the place for you! I would highly recommend it!

Under the microscope: Adam, Trainee Solicitor

Under the microscope here is Adam who is a Trainee Solicitor. We get asked numerous questions about what it’s like to work at Riverview Law so we decided to profile some of the different roles throughout our business. We have published a series of case studies on Riverview Law employees which will give you a feel for the people within our business, the roles they undertake and what it’s like to work here.

Me: Adam 

My role: I started at Riverview Law as a Business Law Executive and recently became one of the first 7 people at Riverview Law to be awarded a Training Contract.

What I did before joining:

Prior to joining Riverview I was studying the LPC at BPP Liverpool. My studies on the LPC were highly geared towards commercial law and so it really was great timing to land the job so soon after law school. I think that part of the reason young lawyers are seldom given responsibility early on in their career is because of the delay between the end of legal study and the beginning of proper legal practice. As soon as I started at Riverview I was servicing a FTSE 100 from day 1 and was able to put my knowledge directly into practice with hands on experience and the law fresh in my mind.

Why I joined:

Riverview struck me as the Google of the legal profession. Innovation was clearly high on the agenda and it is a business that’s pushing the boundaries and changing attitudes. My experience in the profession was one bound by tradition where innovation was reserved for the ancient lawyer at the top of the tower. Typically lawyers are not considered innovators but Riverview changed that for me and continues to change those attitudes in the profession. It had a bright and refreshing approach to legal services – that immediately grabbed my attention. I also felt that I had a chance to make my mark on the business and to be creative from the beginning.

What surprised me most in my first week at Riverview Law:

It is made crystal clear from the beginning that you, as an individual, are a key part of the business and can really make a difference. I wasn’t expecting such an open plan, dynamic environment where everyone is so accessible. That was a welcome change to most law firms.

What I’ve learnt since joining:

I’ve advised on over £50m worth of commercial transactions both domestic and overseas. I wouldn’t have been able to do that anywhere else at this stage in my career. Support is there for you at all times and that’s why Riverview’s young lawyers excel. We are literally sitting in and amongst experts – there are no offices or cubicles, we’re all in one place. Riverview is always looking to nurture talent internally. What’s interesting is that you can learn about the other roles in the business and give your career a new direction if you choose to – Riverview will facilitate it. From software development to client management and HR, people often move around and gain great experience from our diversity. As an example, I’m currently learning the basics of software coding from one of our programmers!

What I enjoy most about my job:

I enjoy the client contact and managing my own cases. My role involves a lot of legal and commercial negotiations and I find that aspect of my work thrilling. I also enjoy working from customer premises through our immersion plan and really getting to know our customers’ businesses and approach. I was recently involved in a series of high value software purchases in Hong Kong and got to work with some fantastic people and stakeholders across the business. Our work is global and our presence in the market is expanding – it’s an exciting place to be.

How Riverview Law compares with other places I’ve worked:

I have never worked in such a lively office where everyone is connected on both a professional and personal level. Riverview values its personalities and everyone who visits comments on our culture. The organisation recognises that you’re a person first and a lawyer second; that you have a social life and need to enjoy your work in order to excel at it. We even have a pool table and an ice cream freezer – key differentiators for me. Our socials are some of the best I’ve been to and are put together by our fantastic social committee! It’s a vibrant place and it is changing every day.

Why I’m still here:

First and foremost – the people! Our teams aren’t service delivery vehicles, they’re friendship groups. I can honestly say that I would gladly share a pint with every single member of the Riverview team bar none. You’re also treated as a valued professional, no matter your level of experience, practice area or lawyer/non-lawyer. Everyone has their own background and experience which creates a diverse group of interesting people who bring that into work. It is because of our people that we’re ahead of the curve and at the forefront of developments in the legal market. You get that feeling when you walk through our doors – it truly is an exciting place to work.

What I’d say to potential applicants:

You absolutely have to apply. We’re not paying lip service when we say “be yourself”. We mean it. Your legal knowledge and experience is a given; we want fantastic lawyers, but what can you offer over and above that? That’s what our customers ask of us and why they’re working with us – added value. Show off your personality and just be you. If you don’t like what we have to offer, I would be incredibly surprised – but you’ll get a free ice cream in the process.

Under the microscope: Sarah, Finance Manager

Under the microscope here is Sarah who is Finance Manager. We get asked numerous questions about what it’s like to work at Riverview Law so we decided to profile some of the different roles throughout our business. We have published a series of case studies on Riverview Law employees which will give you a feel for the people within our business, the roles they undertake and what it’s like to work here.

Me: Sarah

My role: Finance Manager

What I did before joining:

I am a qualified Management Accountant and spent the majority of my career working in manufacturing.  I had a career break in 2004 when I retrained as a florist. I then spent 6 years running my own Florist in Coventry before returning to accountancy in 2010.

Why I joined:

I joined Riverview Law because I was impressed with the culture and innovation within the business.  The principles applied within Riverview have been used in the corporate environment for many years but within Legal Services this is a major change.  Being involved in change and taking the business forward motivates me so Riverview Law was a perfect fit for me. The opportunity to be involved with Riverview, in what is still, early days, was one that I couldn’t resist!

What surprised me most in my first week at Riverview Law:

I was amazed the culture that was discussed and emphasised during the recruitment process was actually reality! Sometimes what is preached isn’t always practised!  Here at Riverview it is!

What I’ve learnt since joining:

Riverview Law is unique! We really are changing the way Legal Services are delivered.  I assumed, being an accountant, that MI was an integral part of managing a business.  However since joining Riverview I have discovered that this is something the Legal world has been missing out on.  Not only do we provide legal services but we also give our customers monthly management information; a  value adding service which gives them the facility to analyse their business activities more effectively.

What I enjoy most about my job:

I enjoy the fact that every day is different and that I am getting involved in projects that aren’t necessarily purely Finance focussed.  As Finance Manager I am responsible for producing the monthly management accounts for the Board of Directors and providing the Client Managers and Legal Managers with their Profit and Loss accounts in order for them to manage their team and budgets effectively.  We have monthly Profit  and Loss review meetings which are a two way process, whereby the Managers understand the Financial aspects of their Client Accounts and I get an understanding of the operational aspects of the customers’ accounts which helps me with forecasting and budgeting. As the company is growing rapidly there are many challenges that need resolving including staffing, office space and IT requirements all of which involve Finance at varying degrees.  This gives me exposure to the operational side of the business which I particularly enjoy.

How Riverview Law compares with other places I’ve worked:

Riverview Law is completely different to other places where I have worked; culture is a big thing here and we have the correct balance between work and fun. There is a positive atmosphere within the office, people enjoy being here and I think that is a combination of the openness, honesty and  our One Team culture.  Communication is vital in any organisation and here at Riverview communication is a priority.  We have weekly updates from the Chief Executive which is something the staff value considerably.

Why I’m still here:

I have only been with Riverview Law for 8 months and in this short time I have seen how the Legal Services market is changing and Riverview Law is a major player in this.  To be able to say I was there, I was part of the changes …why would you want to go anywhere else?

What I’d say to potential applicants:

Riverview Law is not a traditional law firm… if you are looking for tradition then this is not the company for you!  We have six values; one of the most important ones to me is individual.   We are encouraged to show our individuality and personality.  In my experience a culture like this is rare.  If you are the type of person that likes to make a difference and be part of the team then Riverview Law should be a consideration for you.

Under the microscope: Nicola, Client Manager & Service Delivery Team Leader

Under the microscope here is Nicola who is a Client Manager and Service Delivery Team Leader. We get asked numerous questions about what it’s like to work at Riverview Law so we decided to profile some of the different roles throughout our business. We have published a series of case studies on Riverview Law employees which will give you a feel for the people within our business, the roles they undertake and what it’s like to work here.

Me: Nicola 

My role: Client Manager and Service Delivery Team Leader

What I did before joining

Prior to joining Riverview, I worked as a Client Manager at AdviserPlus, where I met and worked alongside Karl Chapman managing a large channel partner in delivering HR advisory services to small and medium sized businesses. Prior to that I was a Statutory Advertising Manager for Lee & Nightingale Advertising where I led a team in delivering statutory advertising services to a large portfolio of clients ranging from well-known UK law firms to government entities.

Why I joined:

I was asked to assist in the launch of Riverview Law back in October 2011, and being offered an opportunity to work with Karl and other colleagues was a no brainer for me! I could see the huge potential in the business model and I was really excited about being part of such an amazing project.

What surprised me most in my first week at Riverview Law

The sheer hard work and determination of my colleagues. It was all hands to the pump and everyone got involved when required.

What I’ve learnt since joining:

I have learnt so much. My role has varied since joining. I originally joined as Office Manager to assist with recruitment, HR policies and procedures, H&S, project management, IT infrastructure – I got involved with almost everything in the early days. Once Riverview Law was an established business, I transitioned into a role of Client Manager which I was familiar with from my previous roles. My knowledge has grown so much and I have learnt something new almost every week, whether that is something about processes, systems, customers or my colleagues.  My career has developed and I believe that I have grown with each role.

What I enjoy most about my job:

How varied it is. No 2 days are the same and there is always something going on. Our customers trust us and want us to help them where we can so this keeps us busy.  

How Riverview Law compares with other places I’ve worked:

It is like no other. I have worked in small family run businesses and large corporates, neither of which have even come close to Riverview.

Why I’m still here:

I consider myself very fortunate to work with such fantastic people in such a fantastic business. The culture that Riverview possesses is infectious. Being part of something so great from the beginning makes you want to stay and see what the future holds. I am proud to say that I have been/and am part of an amazing journey and it is only just beginning! What I’d say to potential applicants: Some comments that have been made to me by various employees, work experience candidates and interns, is that they have never experienced a place quite like Riverview. Take a look at our website.  I know that it is easy for us to say how great we are, but we really are!

Under the microscope: Edmund, Legal Manager & Commercial Lawyer

Under the microscope here is Edmund who is a Legal Manager and Commercial Lawyer. We get asked numerous questions about what it’s like to work at Riverview Law so we decided to profile some of the different roles throughout our business. This is the first in a series of case studies from Riverview Law employees which will give you a feel for the people within our business, the roles they undertake and what it’s like to work here.

Me: Edmund

My role: Legal Manager and Commercial Lawyer

What I did before joining:

Before joining Riverview, I was a senior associate and part of the corporate team based in the Liverpool Office of a global law firm.  I spent lots of long days, and often nights and weekends, working on international acquisitions and disposals with a niche practice in offshore property trusts.

Why I joined:

In all honesty, when I joined Riverview Law in August 2013, I knew very little about the business or the team – there was very little to know given how new the business was and the paucity of publicly available information at the time. I accepted the invitation for an interview as I was intrigued by this “new” legal services business model and wanted to find out more about it. The interview lasted one hour, and I spent a further hour and a half meeting various members of the team based at the Wirral office (which at that time only numbered around 20!). It was the time spent at the interview, as well as the enthusiasm and positivity of the team, which convinced me that this was the right career choice for me, and I have not looked back since!

What surprised me most in my first week at Riverview Law:

The biggest surprise to me in my first week at Riverview Law was the clarity of vision of the business – not clever PR tag lines developed to promote a brand but meaningful business objectives that underpin everything each of us actually do.

What I’ve learnt since joining:

The biggest single lesson I have learnt here at Riverview Law is that there are many ways to be a lawyer. Previously, as a lawyer within a traditional private practice environment, there was only one “proper” way to progress in your legal career.  If you bill more, work excessive hours and spend all your spare time developing your own client base (all of which are more self-serving than client-focussed), you may, eventually, get a shout at partnership at some stage.  Conversely, failure to adhere to this path can be seen as a lack of ambition. Working within that type of environment, I just kept my head down and got on with it.  Stepping away from that environment and having spent time learning about the bigger picture has helped me understand how narrow and unsustainable that particular perspective is, and that we can achieve great things in law a different way.

What I enjoy most about my job:

What do I enjoy most about my job?  Easy one this – the people.  The team has grown from around 20 or so employees when I joined in August 2013 to over 100 employees (as at September 2014). Throughout this period of rapid growth the business has not only successfully retained but has also enhanced the enthusiasm, the positivity and the team culture that makes the Riverview Law business as a whole, and each and every individual within the business, so individual and unique. Is it perfect?  Absolutely not!  There are many challenges to this business, some of which are common to legal businesses and some of which are unique to Riverview Law, and the team works together and works hard to address them. Is it the best place I have ever worked?  By an absolute country mile.

How Riverview Law compares with other places I’ve worked:

Riverview Law, compared to my previous experiences of traditional private practice, is in a word – different. One of the key differences is that there is a pretty flat management structure.  Of course there are line managers and reporting lines, but no hierarchy as such – everyone has a say and everyone’s views are considered equally. Also, there is no “clock”, which from a lawyer’s perspective is hugely liberating.  In my view, formal time recording is a management device used by law firms to artificially drive individual financial performance, but it is an old fashioned construct that no longer reflects good business practice. It is not just the removal of the administrative burden of recording time and monitoring personal financials that is liberating, but the fact that it frees time up to focus on supporting and developing other members of the team.

Why I’m still here:

Back in 1996, I started my law degree and took the first steps towards a career in law with that vaguely unspecific and romanticised notion of making a difference.  Many years of commercial private practice later, I finally have the opportunity to do so.

What I’d say to potential applicants:

The most important piece of generic advice I’d give any potential applicant is to do the research and make sure you are applying to join for the right reasons. Riverview Law is a young, dynamic, fast-moving, forward-thinking, non-traditional legal services provider.  The office represents an open, collaborative workplace environment where members of the team across all roles are encouraged to take ownership of their work at a very early stage as well as to proactively contribute towards the business itself. In addition to this, applicants will get a lot of opportunities to work closely with FTSE 100 customers and to develop their legal and wider business skills accordingly. There is also a clear focus on each individual to maintain a proper work balance.  Taking a proper lunch break and leaving on time are not only not frowned upon, but actually actively encouraged! If this sounds like you, please apply!