Elevate Services

Voices of Change in the Business of Law

  • 30 minutes 12 seconds
    Jabil - Routinise and Standardise Legal Operations At Work

    From a 5-day to a 24-hour turnaround

    The Impact Podcast features Dan Coll, Senior Associate General Counsel and Caleb Bendix, Deputy General Counsel at Jabil. Our podcast host is Steve Harmon, COO and General Counsel of Elevate. Listen in as our guests outline two examples of implementing change within Jabil. The first features a procurement centre of excellence and support model about efficiency, including intake, triage, playbook support, and staffing. The second features the build-out of a fully automated NDA process.

    01:00 Introduction to Dan and Caleb.

    02:36 Jabil’s Center of Excellence to support indirect and direct procurement.

    05:31 A perfect storm of a major acquisition - and launching the centre of excellence.

    09:03 Our colleagues aren’t sure which of the team is Jabil and who represents the LPO.

    11:39 The in-house team had been supporting 100% of the global NDAs, so we could immediately reduce this low-value add work to 25%.

    14:15 Jabil recently signed another SOW to support their commercial team, something they previously wouldn't have considered. 

    16:21 We look at automation to free up time to be strategic and work on projects that move top-line revenue and margin for the company.

    20:35 Legal operations journey is thinking about centres of excellence and things we can routinise.

    24:03 We've processed 8500 incident NDAs over the last three years with zero legal contact and zero variation from our standard template.

    29:35 Today, Jabil is ready for … the next template.

    12 December 2023, 5:00 am
  • 32 minutes 53 seconds
    Beth O'Callahan - Solve Business Problems, Not Just Legal Problems

    “You take no risks; you make no money.”

    This Elevate.Together.Podcast. Impact episode features the Chief Legal Officer of NetApp, Beth O'Callahan, and the podcast host, Steve Harmon, the COO and General Counsel of Elevate. Beth and Steve discuss implementing change, how change can motivate and challenge a team, and that success should be measured by looking at metrics and the organization's values to ensure qualitative priorities are not missed.

    [00:46] Beth shares her journey from litigation to corporate law and her current position.

    [02:48] Developing your knowledge of the business will help you support the legal needs of your colleagues.

    [04:47] One advantage of being in-house is you are closer to the business and the people conducting business.  Your role is translator or interpreter of that legal risk.

    [07:43] Part of leadership is assigning responsibility and a charter appropriate for an individual’s skillset and experience.

    [08:28] Contracts is required for first-year law students, but remedies is optional. If the remedy doesn't matter, does the breach?

    [10:55] NetApp needed to reorient the legal team to support a new area. They used legal outsourcing resources to help right-size their organisation to support new areas.

    [12:49] Engaging underrepresented groups regionally required working with outside counsel, to establish different goals, for each region of the business. 'Think globally, act locally.'

    [16:49] Some professionals raise their hand and say, "I want to go after this new thing.” As leaders, our role is to make people comfortable taking risks. 

    [19:44] When implementing change there's a certain level of winging it. It's not all buttoned up and drawn out with rules and responsibilities.

    [23:22] The way to assess good versus poor legal performance is to understand how your clients are being measured.

    [27:39] Evaluate opportunities to push things to legal operations. As a general counsel, we must address resource allocation, and how much of our internal budget is allocated to tasks.  There's a finite number of resources and budget to allocate.

    [29:32] I could be your favorite lawyer if I agreed to everything you wanted.

    3 October 2023, 5:05 am
  • 27 minutes 3 seconds
    Brett Durand - Opportunity Cost and Opportunity Savings

    Lawyers Spending More Time Lawyering

    This impact episode podcast features Brett Durand, Legal Operations Director at Sempra, and our host for this podcast is Elevate’s COO and General Counsel, Steve Harmon. Brett and Steve discuss implementing positive change, featuring two projects at Sempra, implementing iManage, and adopting Elevate’s invoice review solution.

    00:55 Brett Durand from patent law to audits to legal tech and legal operations.

    01:44 Implementing change and iManage.

    03:17 The cloud has changed how we implement new solutions.  

    05:37 Ease of use has resulted in a tenfold increase in creating and saving content for greater accessibility, record retention, and risk mitigation.

    08:15. Don’t assume that people would see the benefit of technology platforms and naturally gravitate towards them.

    10:14 The choice between a phased-in approach or a big bang launch - migrating everyone over on a particular day. 

    14:29 Build a safety net with your current solution and take the time to assess your documents and reduce your data footprint. 

    16:47 Executing a well-thought-out communication plan and having an active champion network.

    18:57 Making invoice review easier for attorneys – by inserting a third party into the conversation.

    25:10 Internal initiatives like invoice review can create savings to fund the implementation of other programs.  

    “Invoice Review is about balance, and we’re pleased to offer attorney discretion to adjudicate and adjust the invoice.”


    29 August 2023, 5:05 am
  • 33 minutes 19 seconds
    Aarash Daroodi – Lawyer Jokes as a Measurement of Success

    From the Mailroom to the Boardroom, You Have To Connect With the Humans

    In this Impact episode, Aarash Darroodi, Fender's General Counsel and Executive Vice President, and Elevate's COO and General Counsel, Steve Harmon, discuss implementing change, specifically the need to insist and engage to ensure inclusion and diversity within legal. The conversation continues with the discussion on legal professionals as business leaders and the recent appointment of legal leaders to executive business roles. The most compelling points in this podcast revolve around Aarash's personal story and its impact on his career.

    00:14 Aarash credits his life experience as key to successfully implementing change within Fender.

    07:45 Approaching change as a General Counsel, the incrementalist, and the revolutionary.

    10:00 In-house counsel are critical in ensuring fundamental positive change. 

    12:00 A differentiator between in-house and outside counsel is a greater expectation around business acumen.

    15:29 The legal department's role is to enable the business; to help the business design, build and sell its products in a legally appropriate way.

    19:52. The highest compliment a businessperson could pay to the lawyer is to say, "I want you here to talk about the business issues."

    24:18 Unlike twenty years ago, today a general counsel may become the business leader .

    6 June 2023, 5:05 am
  • 20 minutes 8 seconds
    Andy Krebs - Making Legal and the Business Better

    Using Data, Implementing Change, and Improving Productivity

    The Impact podcast you're about to hear features Senior Director and Head of Legal Operations at Twilio, Andy Krebs, and Steve Harmon, Elevate's COO and General Counsel. Steve, Andy, and Elevate CMO Nicole Giantonio discuss planning for and executing a strategy to establish Twilio as a highly efficient world-class law department.

    00:41 Andy shares comments on his career journey, including 21 years at Intel - from managing wafers to building a supplier diversity model and, ultimately, legal ops.  

    01:39 As the new leader of Twilio Legal Ops, Andy elaborates on tactical team priorities and strategy.

    04:08 Steve Harmon asks about the relative distribution between the things that make the legal department run better versus Twilio's focus to enable the business to make the business run better.

    06:20 Tracking basic foundational metrics, revenue per attorney, and working with internal legal leadership to understand the metrics they care about.  Using data to make decisions.

    11:06 Establishing a three-year plan, looking for short-term wins to get buy-in, then layering in and building out functions for longer-term impact.

    13:26 Using data to support change, improve productivity and improve job satisfaction.  

    15:45 Connecting Legal with Legal Operations, present a strategy and plan for getting there, and bring your colleagues into the discussion.

    17:05 A practical Legal Operations function creates a huge opportunity to make improvements.

    19:35 Some days, you're pulling your hair out, but that's part of it. If it were easy, everybody would do it.

    2 May 2023, 5:00 am
  • 23 minutes 55 seconds
    Mike Russell - Virtual Law Firms and Boots on the Ground

    How many contract templates is the correct number?

    This Impact Podcast features Mike Russell, the Head of Global Legal Operations for Expedia Group, and Steve Harmon, Elevate's COO and General Counsel. Mike and Steve discuss two change initiatives and the impacts of those changes. The first outlines the deconstruction and rebuilding of litigation processes for a large manufacturing organisation. The second involves the process review and automation of buy-side contracts at Expedia.

    01:01 Listen in as Mike Russell outlines his professional journey into Legal Operations and his role at Expedia. 

    01:40 Now, Steve Harmon elaborates on his background and path to Legal Operations. 

    03:28 We jump into one of our Impact experiences - reviewing, deconstructing, and rebuilding litigation processes, which resulted in measurable savings.

    06:00 We connected dedicated national trial counsel and discovery counsel within a legal ops-driven process to keep track of all the moving parts.

    07:40 There was a shift in work from the law firm side to the law company.

    08:01 While implementing tech is often the first step; our focus from the beginning was adoption and tracking.

    10:43 There were measurable savings, and the project provided a study on how an alternate service provider can add value and be an extension of the team.

    12:22 Our second impact experience was buy-side contracting at Expedia.

    13:29 Over nine months, we unwound our templates, contracts, playbooks, attorney knowledge, and contract manager procurement knowledge and developed workflows with the platform vendor and our implementation partner, Elevate.

    15:21 Realizing outsourcing makes sense.

    17:05 Routinising and documenting a process can substitute for a SOX control.

    18:14 People have enjoyed adopting the platform; they like interfacing with it.

    19:12 A reduction in cycle time resonates strongly with the business.

    20:01 We are surprised by the benefits of having a strong contracting policy that dictates the minimum contracting standard and minimum acceptable terms.

    21:38 Take advantage of the knowledge your partners bring, allow time for education..

    23:01 Get involved in peer networking, CLOC, and ILTA, the ACC link, legal operators; there's an opportunity to learn from your peers.

    14 March 2023, 5:05 am
  • 18 minutes 16 seconds
    Keeping the Flex in Australia’s Flexible Resourcing

    The Commute and the Hybrid Work Model

    In the second two-part podcast series, Director Paula Forbes talks with Daniel Hogan, an Engagement Manager in our flexible legal resourcing who leads our Asia pack initiatives from Australia. Paula and Daniel touch on trends they’re seeing today and what’s next in legal resourcing. 

    [01:13] Work from home, return to the office, and hybrid work models – with office downsizing and talent preference – options and the hybrid work model *might* be here to stay.

    [03:35] The office is a training ground for early career individuals, offering a social network and a suitable workspace. Then there is the commute.

    [06:39] Many lawyers working overseas delayed their return to Australia as the borders opened, while lawyers locked down in Australia have gone overseas or are leaving.

    [08:29]  Rates have normalized in the last quarter of the year from the increases available post-lockdown as the battle for talent in Australia has turned to other factors besides rates.

    [10:58] We’re seeing more uncertainty in the market going into 2023, and there is a consideration that there’s a bit of risk within the interim market. Longer-term contracts of six or twelve months and temp-to-perm or interim-to-perm opportunities are appealing more.

    [13:20] The construction and energy industries remain strong and should continue due to the volume of investment in infrastructure, energy, and the switch to renewables.  There’s been a drop in the volume of M&A transactions and an increase in data privacy and cybersecurity investigations.

    [15:07] There is a direct correlation between how interested a person is in talking to you about a new opportunity and how flexible the business environment is.

    [17:07] Many organizations are coming up with creative solutions to differentiate. Considering who they are, how they want to present themselves, their brand and reputation are increasingly important because talent has a choice.


    13 December 2022, 5:05 am
  • 34 minutes 41 seconds
    Experience the Harmony of Contract Harmonization

    Start Smart When It Comes to Your CLM Implementation

    Executing your CLM implementation smart is the topic of this lively podcast.  Listen in and hear how the CLM market has changed the world of corporate contracting.  Join two of the industry’s most knowledgeable resources, Bernadette Bulacan, Chief Evangelist at Icertis and Kami Paulsen, Managing Director at Elevate, for this conversation.

    01:25 Meet Bernadette and Kami.

    02:25 Legal ops teams cut their teeth on technology.  Today those learnings are being applied to CLM implementaitons.

    04:56 CLM presents a great opportunity to introduce legal technology across the enterprise.

    06:03 Big bang or a phased an enterprise CLM implementation,what's the best approach? 

    07:12 Best practice includes stage gates, iterating, starting with a smaller universe of agreements and creating a team of champions.

    08:50 Readiness includes ensuring your contract templates in order - and knowing where they are. 

    09:50 Starting with a process like NDAs provides the experience to be applied to more complex processes.

    11:20 The SOW process forces customers to look at Big Bang while starting small has the benefit of establishing and testing processes for a larger rollout.

    13:42 The Elevate and Icertis SmartStart offering is front end loaded with harmonization for customers that don't have time for harmonization.

    15:35 Once you harmonize the content developing workflows and KPIs are less daunting.

    17:02 Capturing information in an organized way pays dividends.

    21:12 Prioritization and understanding organizational drivers including consolidation, and turnaround can direct the implementation.

    24:47 CLMs fail when the clients say, “This is our process, we have to do it this way” - and we give them a faster way to implement their bad process

    26:31 Challenging process is imperative, you have to be ready to take a look at contracts, actual physical documents and the process and the people that are working. 

    27:03 Technology is not a magic bullet, build a team of champions, have playbooks, be okay with iteration.

    30:56 Programs like StartSmart and overall industry maturity have slowed the 3-year cycle of rip and replace.

    31:39 Was it a training issue, or was it a change in management? what we've seen in development in the last few years is incredible, and companies that may have 10 years ago, now with everything being in the Cloud, it's opened up this entire new world of integrations

    33:25 We are all moving very fast, if we take time in the beginning to slow down and look at the processes, where they're broken - before we take that leap of faith into CLM we'll benefit by having the ability to move much faster with information and data that's reliable. 

    16 August 2022, 5:05 am
  • 26 minutes 8 seconds
    The Evolution of Incident Response

    Don’t Panic and Take a Deep Breath.

    An Expert series podcast, this episode covers data breaches from three angles – legal, technology, and services.  Our host for this podcast is James Manari, a Vice President at Elevate, and our three industry experts introduce themselves at the beginning of the podcast.    

    [00:47] Meet our guests: Melissa Ventrone, the Business Unit Leader for the Privacy and Cybersecurity team at Clark Hill; Adi Elliott, is the COO at Canopy Software; and Megan Silverman, is a Director in Elevate's Incident Response Practice.

    [03:43] The evolution of incident response and where the industry is today. 

    [04:53] There is a consumer expectation that if you hand your information over, a company will take the proper steps to protect it.

    [07:38] Laws are struggling to keep up with technology and change.

    [09:55] Lawmakers don’t necessarily understand the scope of what they're asking companies to do in response to these incidents. 

    [13:56] Affected entities are surprised at the amount of data they have and what it contains. 

    [17:05] Have a plan in place for what do we do when there is an incident, go on a data diet, understand where your information is, know your cyber insurance provider, know who your attorneys are going to be 

    [21:34] While consumers are becoming desensitized to these incidents, legislation is continuing to drive tighter security controls, and regulations will continue to evolve.

    12 April 2022, 5:05 am
  • 21 minutes 1 second
    ElevateFlex Australia - The Bubble Has to Burst

    Australia and Others Practicing More Flexibly.

    This Expert series podcast highlights two leaders from Elevate's flexible legal resourcing business, ElevateFlex. Elevate Director, Paula Forbes, talks with Dan Hogan, an ElevateFlex Engagement Manager, leading our Asia-Pac Initiatives for Australia. Paula and Dan touch on two unique years, trends they are seeing today, and what's next in legal resourcing.

    [00:47]   Extensive lockdowns have marred the Australian market for legal resourcing. 

    [02:47]  Australia relies on resource movement in and out to refresh the knowledge and experience pool.

    [04:00] Talent in short supply becomes expensive.

    [06:09] Pay a competitive rate, make a decision quickly, condense the number of interviews to one, get the decision-makers on that call.

    [06:53] Talent wants an element of stability - longer contracts.

    [08:01] People are evaluating flexible work and how it works for them.

    [10:31] Work is underway on learning and development for junior lawyers working remotely.

    [12:24] Today’s location-independent jobs provide more opportunity.

    [13:47] The UK and the US legal talent is starting to move away from big law firms with big salaries.

    [15:47] Talent is heading back into the larger law offices, and there is a salary race to entice Talent into roles

    [18:12] One of the patterns that we started to see over 2021 was the movement of Talent even from permanent opportunities.

    [19:39] There is an increase in opportunities in cybersecurity, and the corporate M&A sector is red hot in Australia and beyond.

    15 March 2022, 5:05 am
  • 24 minutes 56 seconds
    Crispin Passmore – We’ve Been Working on Our ABS

    Creating a Simplified Customer Experience

    Late in 2021, Elevate was the first law company to be granted an Alternative Business Structure license in the US by the Arizona Supreme Court. This Expert podcast features Elevate's CEO Liam Brown, our General Counsel, Steve Harmon and the Co-founders and Partners in Elevate's law firm, Nicole Auerbach and Pat Lamb. Crispin Passmore hosts this podcast episode. Crispin has been a resource to Elevate, consulting on our SRA ABS license in the UK and our ABS in Arizona.

    [00:49] What is an ABS - and why did Elevate want one.

    [03:34] 80% of the work done in corporate law departments does not require a licensed lawyer

    [05:14] How did it work? Did Elevate face any challenges with the application process?

    [07:05] The ABS license allows us to better service our customers. We can seamlessly

    solve a customer’s problem without any elaborate explanation.

    [11:36] The most successful lawyers in this model can see the solution from the customer's perspective; they value the multi-disciplinary approach.

    [14:17] The ABS license allows for properly integrating the restricted practice of law into our broader law company deliverables. 

    [16:13] Today Elevate is an expert-led, technology-powered law company.

    [18:02]  As an ABS, is Elevate competing with the traditional law firms of our customers?

    [20:42] As law firms exit their ALSPs, their focus will be competing with other law firms and the Big Four for core advice of law business.

    [23:24] The emergence of ABS in the US is an important step; it's great for customers, it's great for lawyers, and it's excellent for those that innovate.


    15 February 2022, 5:05 am
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