Webber Wentzel

Following hot on the heels of the launch of Webber Wentzel's Legal Services Centre in November 2016, the firm is rolling out a firm-wide initiative to improve efficiency through the introduction of tailored Legal Project Management (LPM) training for all of its lawyers and staff.

These workshops will be run by the firm's in-house Legal Project Managers and form part of an ongoing Client Service Efficiency Programme begun in 2015, focusing on providing the firm's clients with flexible, value-added, solutions using legal technology, alternative resourcing and LPM.

"Our Legal Services Centre was the first of its kind to launch in our market in response to growing client needs for more cost-effective delivery of services in the legal sector. We have been delighted at the interest shown in the services it offers. A focus on the introduction of firm-wide legal project management methodology to ensure that we carry out our client mandates in the most streamlined manner was the next logical step." says Sally Hutton, Managing Partner at Webber Wentzel.

The firm's methodology focuses on project management (scope and communication), the role of technology (legal technology functionality and application, data management and resourcing support), alternative resourcing, and process improvement (lean delivery, quality assurance and efficiency).

Sally Hutton adds: "We appreciate that our in-house Legal Project Managers cannot work on every client matter. This training will enable all our people to project manage client matters following best practice".

The firm also plans to offer LPM training to interested clients, equipping their in-house legal teams with techniques that they can apply internally and that will promote greater collaboration with their external advisors.

Along with the Legal Services Centre, its advances in LPM, and a dedicated pricing function, Webber Wentzel has also recently implemented Intapp Time to support the firm’s time management processes. "Intapp provides an integrated platform that minimises the administrative burden on our lawyers and allows them to focus on client service, whilst also providing our clients with an accurate, timely report of work in progress,” said Helen Harding, Chief Financial Officer at Webber Wentzel.

In-house legal teams that are interested in finding out more about the Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) industry and its impact on law firms and legal departments, may be interested in hearing Celia Pienaar, Legal Project Manager at Webber Wentzel, address the evolving relationship between law firms and legal departments at a seminar on LPOs to be hosted by the Law Society of South Africa on 2, 9 and 23 June 2017 in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban respectively.

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