Success In Legal
In collaboration with the business
Success In Legal
In collaboration with the business
E4: How HESTA's Legal Team Drove Transformation Success In Collaboration With The Business
In what ways can in-house legal teams look to the business to help compliment their legal transformation?
On today’s episode we have a legal transformation story from Jorden Lam who is the General Manager of Operations & Service Delivery – previous to that, she was the General Counsel & General Manager of Commercial Affairs at HESTA leading the legal team and driving the transformation that you’ll hear about today.
- Jorden’s career journey and how she got started at HESTA
- Why lawyers are best placed to be problem solvers within the business
- Challenges faced by legal teams within growing businesses
- Collaborating with the business to achieve legal transformation success
- Why lawyers are inherently well placed to understand process
- How technology implementation is accelerated by well understood processes
- Iterative improvement mindset
If you would like to connect with the show host of guest you can find them at:
- Jorden’s LinkedIn profile (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jorden-lam/)
- Minwoo’s LinkedIn profile (https://www.linkedin.com/in/minwooyim/)
This show is made possible by listeners like you!
- If you enjoyed the show, we would love if you could leave us a 5-star rating or written review to help get the word out!
- If you have a digital transformation story (or know someone who does) feel free to email us at [email protected] – we’d love to hear from you.
[00:00:00] Hey listeners. Welcome back to outside the box for podcast exploring digital service transformation. On today’s episode, we have a legal transformation story from Jordan Lamb, who is the general manager of operations and service delivery at HESTA. HESTA is one of Australia’s largest superannuation funds and managers, roughly $54 billion in assets.
[00:00:24] Now previous to her current role, she was the general counsel and general manager of commercial affairs and led the legal team in driving the transmission that you hear about today, right? Not despite the funds, immense asset capitalization, Jordan self describes her organizing as having once operated more like a small to medium sized organization.
[00:00:43] And the scaling challenges that you hear about in today’s episode will be challenges that resonate with legal teams of any size. We often hear that legal transformation is best done in collaboration with the business. And Jordan’s story is an excellent example of this. This collaboration has enabled the children and [00:01:00] our legal team to deliver value to the business by creating clarity around process.
[00:01:04] And additionally enabled her team to use technology to operationalize it, complex processes like procurement frameworks and delegation of authority workflows. Jude’s a covert Jordan and I were unable to record this session in person. So please excuse the vocal quality. That’d be assured that the content is still really incredible.
[00:01:23] There’s plenty of helpful insights. In-house legal teams to think about through this episode. So with that said, we hope you enjoy.
[00:01:33] Cool. All right. Let’s kick off. Um, so thanks so much for joining us, Jordan. It’s a real pleasure to have you here. Um, what we’re going to do is we’re going to start with a very quick ice breaker question. And because that’s podcast is all about digital stories, uh, digital service transformation stories we want to ask, what is one book, movie, or TV series that you’re reading or watching right now that you would like to recommend to the listeners?
[00:01:56] Oh, my goodness. I have to think long and hard about [00:02:00] something, but it’s not terribly embarrassing because you know, when you’re locked down live, you do all kinds of stuff you probably wouldn’t normally do. Um, what would I recommend a book I’ve recently read and let me think. I, I very recently started, um, the camp actually, um, because my husband was writing it.
[00:02:22] So getting back down to the classics. And I think the premise of that, I think so many interesting themes. It’s obviously a very old and, um, translated book. Um, but it really talks to, I mean, I mean very common themes that are still very applicable in modern day. So talks about, well, apart from exacting and Patriot it to countless about the revenge there is there, you know, there is a story, there’s a story of working through adversity, right?
[00:02:51] Albeit, you know, being wronged in many different areas, um, things that I like about it are probably how you fight injustice. [00:03:00] Um, and so I think, you know, when you look at things that are relevant in this day and age now, and his current world, I mean, talk about injustice. You talk about inequality, you know, you talk about welfare or all those sorts of things are still relevant, um, in, in modern day.
[00:03:13] So I think it’s, yeah, it has that nice, interesting historical slant to it, to take you probably a little bit out of your every day. Um, but yeah, really get back to some classic classic literature. Wow. That’s super compelling. I actually read it. I haven’t read it transparently, so I’ll need to read that myself.
[00:03:28] Um, so you’re currently the general counsel and GM of commercial affairs at HESTA for the listeners. Can you share a little bit about, um, how, how you got to where you are today from a professional creep perspective and what your everyday role kind of entails? Hmm. Um, so probably, um, didn’t necessarily, I wouldn’t say that I necessarily went straight into it knowing that’s what I wanted.
[00:03:53] Um, I often say to people joining my team, I mean, being in superannuation, um, which is where my role is at in [00:04:00] HESTA. Uh, you don’t. You don’t wake up or fall out of bed and come out of graduating law school saying you want to be a superannuation lawyer. I don’t think anybody does. I meant to say that you want to be a financial services lawyer.
[00:04:13] Uh, so it’s, it’s been something that is, I think I say to a lot of people where your career goes, of course you can be deliberate well and strategic about it. But so much of it has to do with just luck and timing. And it’s the luck and timing components of it that tell you, um, that throw to you, the opportunities that you can then make a decision on whether you want to take them or not.
[00:04:36] So I started on a usual path coming out of law school, worked in firms, worked in private practice and worked out pretty quickly that probably private practice for me was probably not going to give me the multidimensional exposure to business that I’ve found quite interesting. Um, I, I love the law. I really find it fascinating.
[00:04:56] I love seeing how it’s applied, but I also like to see [00:05:00] things more broadly in a business. And that probably talks to a little bit of why I’ve been interested in transformation and digital journeys. So. Work that out pretty quickly decided I wanted to probably move into an organization, not sure in what capacity exactly, but, um, opportunity.
[00:05:16] And this is the luck and timing piece, uh, came up to join the compliance team really at HESTA. And back then, we were much smaller as an organization and. So I was pretty much the second co compliance person going in. There was no legal function. Um, compliance kind of did a mishmash of all legal brief and all that kind of stuff.
[00:05:37] And had the opportunity again, to basically say and make the case that we’ll, you know, we’re growing super fund, even back then were at 24 billion in funds, under management. Uh, we, we need a legal team. We need to establish a legal capability. And so in, in that part of it, I mean, I I’ve crossed that opportunity to set that up.
[00:05:58] And it’s been a very interesting journey [00:06:00] today. And I mean, that was probably seven, nearly eight years ago now. And in that time, we’ve grown a legal team that then established itself as not only being expert legal advisors, but part of my passion for that is exactly, as I’ve said, wanting to really get into a business, understand its challenges and not only language challenges, but water ones and how we can solve those with whatever solutions we can find.
[00:06:25] And so I’ve built our legal team to really focus on business improvement. Um, as being a core part of call it the 10 KPIs, but how we run in practice as team. So, and that means that means grabbing whatever sorts of issues that we come across and trying to fix them. I think the legal team at HESTA would describe themselves as fixes.
[00:06:46] Um, how did that journey has then now taken us through a lot of digital transformation and adopting tools to help streamline business practices. Um, you know, Cole Cole, part of that, uh, checkbox has been involved in, I mean, we spent [00:07:00] a bit of time really mapping and understanding the procurement journey for our internal business stakeholders.
[00:07:07] And how do we go about procuring goods and services. Now that’s not typical area of legal work. Legal is usually one stakeholder in that whole process where you might review the contract and review what we’re doing. Um, but we took it upon ourselves to really design that process. And that involved, you know, talking with business stakeholders, workshopping the process, actually just literally mapping out what we wanted that process to look like.
[00:07:31] And then once we built that out, then it became about, well, what, what are the tools that we can really employ to streamline, automate, make it easier for the business to follow. And that’s, that’s, you know, been a great part of the training where we’ve been able to do that with checkup. That’s an interesting, and just to lean into what you said earlier around lawyers being a problem solvers within the business, I want to ask, um, why do you think lawyers are best placed within industry?
[00:07:56] So legal teams with industry to actually be those problem solvers, as opposed to [00:08:00] anyone else within the business? I think because your, your technical training is not only training you to focus on the legal confines that businesses need to comply with, but it teaches you to actually look at information all around you and identify the problem areas and distill what an outcome should be.
[00:08:20] I think that inherent kind of training that you get as a, as a lawyer, as a law student can be applied in so many ways, not just the law. I think there’s a fallacy or an erroneous assumption that lawyers can only look at the law and they only know how to look at the law. And, you know, there are lawyers that prefer to be that technical expert.
[00:08:38] Absolutely. Um, but equally there’s a whole sea of other lawyers who can apply and like to apply that more broadly. So I think that that’s a skillset that really, if you have lawyers that are interested and want to apply it towards business, Then you’ve got the base skills that prime you to do that coupled with the fact that, you know, again, as I said, the regulatory framework that [00:09:00] the business operates within as well.
[00:09:01] I love that. I love that the kind of mindset that you kind of shared that lawyers are more than just. Uh, about approaching the law, but actually inherently as part of their training, their, their skillset allows them to approach problems and become really good problem solvers. I love that. Um, so taking a step back, um, you know, you mentioned that you grew the legal team about seven, eight years ago.
[00:09:23] Um, and you’ve gone, you’ve obviously undergone some level of transformation with the legal team since then. Uh, but taking a step back in time, what was some of the challenges that you were noticing perhaps in the legal team or within the business that actually became the impetus for transformation? I think in many ways, I know when we, when I first started at HESTA, I mean, we were a big, big, fun, even back then.
[00:09:46] I mean, 20, 24 bill, but. And the infrastructure of our office set up. I think wasn’t like a big organization, right? In many ways it was sort of like a small to medium organization almost. Um, in that we didn’t have [00:10:00] set processes, we didn’t have centralized technology in our frameworks and systems. We didn’t have centralized processes for managing legal risks.
[00:10:08] It was all very, um, You know, ad hoc, you know, really, you know, you, I think many startups, for example, would be able to appreciate the TD stock with limited resources. And then you bootstrapped a lot of things, but as you get bigger and grow, it gets to a point where you realize, Oh, actually, um, we can’t just have that one person kind of covering 10 billion different things, just because I happen to know the business, you actually need to make sure you work out well, what’s the best way going forward that you’ve got.
[00:10:33] The bright framework, right. All set up to really roll out what you need to do, what you want to do as an organization strategically. And so it was that growth, that growth for your period. I think I joined right as we’re on the cusp of that, um, that led us to, you know, not just in legal, but more broadly across the organization.
[00:10:52] Hey, there’s a lot of things here where we need to be, you know, upscaling. So that we’ve got the right systems and structure in place and that’s, that’s people, processes and [00:11:00] systems, all of those things that make our business run effectively. Um, so joining an organization at a really interesting time of growth is certainly a good push, um, and helps you get that business.
[00:11:11] Buy-in certainly to be able to implement new things. Yeah, that’s excellent. And I love that kind of religion you made to the fundamentals of transformation, being people, process and technology. And on that note, we’d love to understand, you know, in light of some of those challenges that you mentioned around the growing pains of moving from, you know, organizationally, what is more like a small, medium business.
[00:11:32] What is more like enterprise, uh, what was some key challenges within people process technology that you wanted to prioritize and tackle first? So, you know, you, you mentioned, um, using those three elements to grow the business, but were there any specific challenges you wants to tackle first? Yeah, I think the first part was actually just working out.
[00:11:49] And you would notice this when, well, I certainly noticed this as people, new people would come in, but the usual questions would be, you know, how, how do we do this? You know, whatever simple process it might [00:12:00] be, whether it be, you know, getting a product launched or implementing any system or get bringing on a new vendor or whatever it is, new people coming in there, that kind of thing.
[00:12:08] Well, how do I normally do that? What’s our process for doing that. Right? And then you’d often be like, Oh, well you can go and ask, you know, so-and-so because they’ll tell you how to do it because I just happened to have been around for so long and it’s all in the head. So that made it clear, right? That, no, you don’t want to just go and ask Bob every time someone new comes along.
[00:12:27] You actually want to have a clarity on what is our process for doing X, Y, Z, and have that centralized and have that knowledge spread throughout the organization. So I think that was probably the first starting point. What, what is the process? Um, what is the current process and what do we want the process to be so that we are primed for our growth.
[00:12:48] So I think that that was certainly the first starting point, like recognizing that there wasn’t clarity in how we wanted to do things and having clearly mapped out processes that took [00:13:00] into account different teams. And as we started getting in there and really trying to look at those processes, you very quickly realize, Oh, actually each team is doing it differently just because.
[00:13:11] Um, and again, that, that becomes, how, how do you distill it? Gives it, okay. Do you still want to do it differently or do you want to somehow centralize the process and make sure everyone’s doing it in the same way factoring in their different needs? I mean, I think that’s absolutely the starting point for where it was for sure.
[00:13:27] And did you guys go through a sort of mapping exercise within the legal team or was there more of a collaborative approach with the rest of the business in terms of mapping those processes up? We met first as a Lao team. So I hold the whole team, some prep, perhaps kicking and screaming, and we did white boarding.
[00:13:44] Um, I’m a big avid whitewater, so we sat and we’d literally drilled down. Um, into the minutia detail of the steps for whatever it is that we are designing. You know, we, we did a contract management system implementation, for example. So [00:14:00] we were then sitting there mapping, well, what is the process for a user who is signing on a contract and needs to file it into a central system, but we mapped first as a legal team so that we tested what we thought of you or the world should be.
[00:14:13] And we tested and tested and tested. Right? So try to get into the lens and mindset of the business, thinking. You know, as much as this facilitates, the legal risk in a legal name, business will be the one using it. So they need to be comfortable and happy with it. But after multiple rounds of our own mapping, we then conducted workshops with each of the stakeholder business teams with key people in the organization that we picked and thoughtful from these teams.
[00:14:38] There’ll be the key users. They’ll be the change advocates. They’ll be the champions, you know, and got them on board. And that’s part of that almost, I guess, that co-design process. That’s awesome. Um, I want to ask a question here around, uh, balancing workload, because one of the, kind of more consistent sentiments I hear in the in-house.
[00:14:57] Uh, segment is that lawyers feel as though there’s [00:15:00] not enough time to do things sort of extracurricular to the, to the legal services they need to provide to the business. And it sounds like that mapping process, although it, you know, you were serving the business, um, in the sense that you were centralizing all that knowledge.
[00:15:12] I, it sounds like it was a pretty time consuming, um, exercise, something that took a lot of effort. How long was that process for you guys in mapping it from zero to everything mapping. And how did you guys find the time to actually do that? Um, time-wise, it was probably quite ongoing. I think the initial workshops, it was probably, Oh, a few hours a day for at least a couple of weeks, um, to really, you know, nut it out.
[00:15:39] And then I think with the rest of the business, we’re talking, you know, a couple of hours of workshops with each of the nine business teams, multiple rounds of iteration, but yeah, time, time consuming, definitely time consuming. Um, how do you find the time? I think. Yeah, you prioritize it. I think it’s, I think it touches upon your point there where you, you [00:16:00] described it actually finding time to do extracurricular legal stuff.
[00:16:04] Um, if you view it as extra curricula, then you’ll pocket and think that we’ll I’ll, I’ll do it when I have spare time. But I, I don’t treat it as extra curriculum. I traded as BIU with the business. And I think that’s where it depends on the mindset of the team, your manager, how the organization views this sort of business improvement, where it’s prioritized, because when it’s part of BIU, you make time for it.
[00:16:26] I love that. And what your lead today, or it sounds like a strategic kind of priority for the legal team to say, Hey, actually, this is not an addition for us. This is what we do day to day. Is that right in saying that. A hundred percent, a hundred percent. I think it’s also a good way. I mean, I see it as a good way to test the legal team so that they do get better at being legal advisors.
[00:16:46] I mean, I think to teams that think all this stuff isn’t as important because my role is a technical legal advisor. I would say that your, your value and ability to really deliver value, even in advice, even if you don’t want to be more in legal ops and [00:17:00] you want to be really focused on being a technical lawyer, how good of a lawyer you can be.
[00:17:05] He’s always fundamental, fundamentally based on how well, you know, the business, not how well, you know, the law. And so taking on initiatives like this really embeds you into your business so that you understand how they work. And, you know, even the relationships that you build in going through exercises like this.
[00:17:23] So at a minimum, making this as part of your BAU, you know, legal Ramy makes you be a better lawyer. Awesome. And the other thing I wanted to ask was, you know, you mentioned process mapping and design work that’s um, you know, stereotypically not within the skillset of a, of a lawyer, you would probably associate more to sort of engineers as well from a, from a technical standpoint.
[00:17:46] Did you find that those skillsets were inherent to your team? Or did you find that you needed to kind of upskill your team? Or did you find that that was a prerequisite? How did you go about kind of getting that skillset within your, within your legal team? [00:18:00] Um, bringing on fantastic bays and PMs to help guide the Lego team.
[00:18:06] Um, I agree. I think the fundamental core skills for a lawyer and not to know how to process map. Um, it was really interesting. I attended this forum workshop thing awhile ago and, um, it was a room full of, I guess, senior lawyers mixed with legal ops professionals. And we were talking about process mapping.
[00:18:23] Um, and one, one person talked about this example of how, how lawyers view process and how sometimes they can be so granular, but other times have no conception of how granular they need to be. And they gave me example of, um, an exercise that a team has done trying to process, map a divorce. You know, a divorce proceeding, you know, that the steps that you go through and going to court and how can you get to settlement to finalize divorce proceedings?
[00:18:50] And she was saying how it was so shocking to her that the variations in process steps were so high. She had a number of people map that process, and all it [00:19:00] took was according to that process, 10 steps. And then you had another team that had met the same thing, and they had like a hundred steps in the process.
[00:19:08] And so I guess the point I make there is that it’s sort of what I was saying earlier. Inherently lawyers do know how to think about it. Um, but they need to be guided on how to apply that process mapping in a business context so that they understand how granular or how macro a process map needs to be and what sort of things need to really be captured.
[00:19:27] And that’s where the partnership with a really quality VI and pay him really, really helped that, which, you know, I’m fortunate to have in my team. I love that. I love that collaboration aspect that you mentioned there. Um, so moving on to sort of, you know, to the point in history where you guys have now mapped up all your different processes and centralized centralizes processes, um, w what was the next step in sort of undergoing transformation?
[00:19:50] Was it, was it technology like you alluded to earlier where you’re considering different technologies, uh, at that point in time? Um, I think so. I think it started with really, [00:20:00] just always does. That’s what, what is the problem we’re trying to solve here? Um, and, and I talk a lot about our initial part of the journey being, um, implementing a contract management system.
[00:20:11] And just having a central repository. And I think that need, there was very much a Lego NATO was a hard value prop to sell to the business as to why you need to follow your stuff properly in one place. I mean, you can go through all the legal risk management stuff, but for a business owner who’s very busy and really doesn’t like to file who, who does, if it’s a hard sell to say that this is actually delivering measurable value to you directly, immediately.
[00:20:34] So I think the initial conversations were really around trying to demonstrate the importance of why it was useful to a business owner to have that kind of systematic discipline in place. But then from that it then started being more around, well, how do you continue to facilitate, um, that value? You’re trying to drive the value to a business owner.
[00:20:53] Isn’t I’ve got my contract while some way it’s. For example, when something goes wrong in the vendor relationship I’m managing and [00:21:00] responsible for how do I know what the obligations are and what my rights of recourse apart from yes. Go to Lego. Um, I want to be able to, as a first point of call as an owner, you have to pull it from somewhere and look at it or have reminders about it and, you know, just be guided in that sort of self service journey of vendor management.
[00:21:18] So that became the value prop. You know, once you identify that, then you start thinking, Oh, okay. So how do we do that? I don’t know how you can make something like that comes to life. Is it simple things we, we thought about was, um, obligations management under a contract. So, um, recognizing when there’s an auto renewal, for example, in a contract and setting up a reminder to the vendor slash contract owner in the business to say, Hey, this point in time, you might want to think about whether you’re comfortable or happy with the services and phase, because you’re going to about, you’re about to kick off into an order renewal for another three years.
[00:21:51] And those reminders of the things that are value adding to the business. Um, from, from there, you really then look at the technologies and, you know, you kind of really need to [00:22:00] start with the Valley pro. Um, and then identify where tech can fit in to help facilitate and make that process easier. So you mentioned, um, yeah.
[00:22:07] And, and just to kind of riff on that last point, you mentioned, you said you start with where the business value, um, can be articulated and then look to the technologies are that can fit into that kind of pain point. Um, so is that the typical process that you guys undertake? So where you guys start with the business problem, then assess it, then go, okay.
[00:22:25] How can we actually solve this using technology? Is that the process or is there anything else that you can add? I think that that is usually the main, main process that you go through. I mean, and you go through those phases reasonably quickly, depending on what kind of problem it is. Sometimes it’s a very straightforward problem that, you know, without needing to go through a lot of detailed mapping and thinking that well, clearly the solution here is having this kind of a system.
[00:22:46] You know, like, and, and that might be stuff like having, um, you know, a centralized CRM system, for example, where you want to, you simple issue that you’re trying to solve is, well, how do we have a whole polycystic view of interactions we have with our customers? It’s a [00:23:00] CRM system. Right. Um, and then it kicks off very quickly into a couple.
[00:23:03] Then you go through a tender process, right? Detail requirements, and map the detail requirements. I mean, that’s, that’s probably one of the other aspects. When we look at system implementation, really, um, talking to the business and helping the business understand the importance of their input in requirements.
[00:23:19] I think one of the issues we face a lot of the time. And I think a lot of organizations do is when you try to think about implementing a system with a pro project team, that’s about to roll it out. If you don’t get enough of the input from the business early on about what are those fundamental core requirements non-negotiable requirements, um, that can be really problematic.
[00:23:41] You know, you think at a high level you have, this is a system that works. But when you get into granular detail, it may not work in the way that it needs to work the business. And that’s where those detailed requirements come in. Um, so I can’t stress the importance of getting that right. Yeah. And, you know, you mentioned that getting the detail of how it’s going to work for the [00:24:00] business, right.
[00:24:01] Taking it to a high level would love to understand what, in your experience, what are the kind of key priorities that the business cares about, especially when legal is taking on kind of business improvement and transformation initiatives? Well, what are the kind of few key things that, you know, every single time, you know, business are going to be asking, does it answer X, Y, Z, Um, I think it’s to do with how easy it is.
[00:24:22] Oh, it’s going to be the first, first, first thing, how easy it is for them to have this thing coming to their new everyday life. I mean, change management is hard enough as it is, but if you have even the slightest hiccup that demonstrates that this is going to make it harder than easier, you kind of lose them straight away.
[00:24:38] Right. So, I mean many times when we’re talking about from a legal perspective, when you’ve incrementing a process, kind of a system, um, we’re always asking how many, how many clicks is this going to get through? And, you know, if you guys would know that based on the way we were doing a checkbook, we’re always challenging.
[00:24:53] How many pages are you making people go through? Can we reduce the number of fields or forcing people to enter in to make it, you [00:25:00] know, save time? I think that’s, yeah, that’s always up there on the list. No matter what we’re implementing, it needs to be something that saves time. Cannot be something that adds, um, even if it, you know, even if you’re saying you’re adding value in other respects, if you are adding any more time on top of people’s existing process and way of working, then you sure as hell, but I have a very good, hard sell for why.
[00:25:20] Why is that in time as opposed to shortening it? That’s such an interesting insight. Then you mentioned that it’s the user experience from the business. From the end user’s perspective, that’s really good play a large part in their adoption of it, as opposed to kind of the benefit and high level articulation of how this is going to quote unquote, solve the pain points for the business.
[00:25:38] That’s really interesting. I hadn’t thought about it like that. And, and, and on that note, we’d love to understand now that you guys have done some level of transformation, and you’ve mentioned some already, what have been the benefit of impacts for the legal team as well as the business today? Uh, Lakeville time definitely, um, saves us time, saves us the manual time of [00:26:00] everybody.
[00:26:00] Every time somebody wants to know how do I do this? You know, how do I do that? It’s it’s quite literally, well, here’s the process we have designed. You literally click through and follow it. Any issues, obviously you still come to legal, but it’s having that clarity on here’s the map. We know it works. It’s been tested.
[00:26:16] You guys have tested it. Co-design. Yeah, that’s the time it saves a lot of that handholding, the manual handholding, but also it’s given us a real, um, richness in, in data and identifying really testing how the business through actually follow the processes that they say they want to, I think many organizations will have a whole bunch of policies and procedures.
[00:26:36] Right. But if you’re doing it manually, you actually know how well people are following those processes, or even knowing some of the phrases actually aren’t even working because you’re not really measuring it. But the moment you put in a technology tool or a system that actually captures all of that data.
[00:26:51] So you’re able to see actually there is a pain point in this process that we never even knew existed. And so the technology not only AIDS you in making things [00:27:00] easier, but it’s really, um, made it easier for us to identify new issues that need to be rectified and give you a really good example of that.
[00:27:08] Actually, I think. Um, you know, all organizations will have some kind of a delegations framework, um, who can sign off on watch what contract value they’re allowed to go enter into without needing exec approval, et cetera. And we’ve always had that, you know, we always had delegations register. Everyone knows to look at it, follow it whenever they’re going into things, but you know, there’s no real audit or test of that actually occurring.
[00:27:33] You know, you kind of assume people give their annual participations. They say, yep. I followed it. But no actual. System that’s testing and measuring that in implementing some of the technology tools that we’ve just rolled out. We’ve started to see a questions really Pauline where they’ve said, Oh, hang on.
[00:27:49] I normally have delegation to just sign off on this. And we’re saying, well, no, actually, based on the technology tool, that’s mapped against the delegation. Actually, no, your [00:28:00] understanding of that was incorrect. Right? So that, I think that that’s been fantastic at addressing these sorts of things that you wouldn’t normally know about.
[00:28:07] And it’s coming out of the woodwork as now. Okay. Well let’s what can we do here to fix this part of it and ha have the business given any feedback, um, have they expressed any, um, kind of, uh, positive. But, you know, we love it kind of what have they been saying? Yeah. Yeah. So we’ve had the business love, love, love, love the fact that there’s a system in place that it’s easy to follow.
[00:28:27] That’s intuitive, as you would expect with all new things. I mean, we’ve gone live with this procurement tool, for example, that checkoffs has helped us with, um, I think really only the last couple of months. And so people are still working it out and with that comes tastings. So no doubt. They’ve also been taking issues where people have been jumping and screaming and saying, this is awful.
[00:28:45] This is crap. But, you know, you expect that and you have to work through, and that’s how you partner with them to identify what the issue is. Is it just a technical glitches or something you fix or is there a fundamental issue, but not identify as part of the process that needs [00:29:00] refining? So I did, there has been a lot of that ongoing iteration.
[00:29:03] So I guess that’s the other part. Once you roll something out, be prepared that for the next six to 12 months, There’ll be more iteration coming through that. It’s not just, Oh, you’ve rolled it out. You’re done tick by business. Can have it. Um, you, you do need to be recognizing that you’re constantly going to be working through issues that might come up.
[00:29:21] I love that agile approach that you mentioned, because it does highlight the kind of way that we approach things to make it relevant to the end user, making sure that we get past that, as you say, teething period smoothly. It’s awesome. Yeah. If you had one piece of advice that, you know, if you were to go back in time and give one piece of advice to your, you know, your younger self and your team before you went through this transformation journey, what would that one piece of advice be?
[00:29:47] I think emphasize and really channel, um, perhaps you’re in a patients a lot more. I don’t think at the start. I remember when we did our first system. I [00:30:00] probably didn’t focus enough on business needs. And that’s probably why I talk a lot about it. Now. I focused a lot on legal aid because you need to think about the legal system, but forgetting that the key drivers, users, people putting the data and the stuff into the system, I’m going to be the legal team as everybody else.
[00:30:18] And so that’s why the focus on user experience is so, so, so important because it’s fun and easy for you to say, we’re going to implement this and now you have to do it. But if you just mandate in that way, you’re not going to get successful adoption. Doesn’t matter how beautifully crafted your tool is and how gorgeously designed it is.
[00:30:35] If you haven’t managed that change process properly, um, your, your transformation will fail. So I think that’s where that’s an area. I think lawyers, perhaps haven’t been traditionally trained in, they haven’t gone to law school and being taught about, Hey, you know, when you’re trying to actually deliver advice and then, um, implement transformation core.
[00:30:54] Part of that is actually just managing the people. I think lawyers are trained to think, well, I’m an advisor. [00:31:00] I know the answer here. This is the technical legal answer. And I think this is how to refer to you. Here’s my advice, right? So boys, don’t go beyond that normally, but when you are wanting to deliver on these sort of transformations, you are going beyond that, you’re getting right into it.
[00:31:17] And so that, that would be my key bit of advice, recognizing that very early on and making sure you put enough mental Headspace into thinking about how you solve that. And that’s super human, isn’t it? It’s it’s um, it’s going to take time. It’s going to take empathy and sitting down with people where I think that’s probably, and it seems to be the sentiment I’m hearing when I’ve been doing these interviews that.
[00:31:38] Um, that human element of people management and walking them along that journey is the most effective way. And yet the most time consuming way to actually get people across the, across the line. Yep. I agree. It’s it’s the people management component of it. Um, you know, the second, most biggest thing after you’ve actually developed the right process, um, actually talking papers through it, getting them involved is one of [00:32:00] the earliest ways.
[00:32:00] And I think that has a lot to do with, I was saying about having the workshops and co-design yeah. Cause then I feel like they own it too, rather than they’ve just had this thing thrust upon them. Right. Um, but it’s that whole broader plan of change management and making sure that as you say, empathetic, Um, but very, very patient, like, I think certainly for me, and I know maybe, you know, probably a trait of many, uh, Taipei lawyers, you are inherently impatient and you kind of think he is the answer.
[00:32:26] He’s the tool of door. Why being so difficult. Right. But recognizing that you do need to be patient working with people. That’s all fantastic. Yeah. I like that. I love that final question. So first of all, thank you so much for doing this. Uh, together with mates. Um, if people want to reach out and find out, uh, you know, connect with you and find out more about what you’re doing, where can they reach you?
[00:32:45] And is there anything you’d like to plug or shine a light on? Um, I’m very open to people connecting with me on LinkedIn. I think it’s, you know, professional mode of connection these days. Um, I’m also on Twitter. I actually also write, um, a little bit [00:33:00] about, I guess, legal journeys and my career as well as my team.
[00:33:03] Um, and I, I have a website. So do you want to land.com? So if you want to look at where we’re up to in our language, any, I do write about those things there. Um, so yeah, very happy to connect with everyone. Absolutely. We’ll link to your website in the show notes below. Thanks so much, Jordan. How are you?
[00:33:17] Thank you, man. Hey listeners, if you have your own story of digital service transformation, or know someone who does. We’d love to hear from you and get you on the show. Just shoot us an [email protected] If you’d like to read our show notes or listen to more episodes, you can always head over to our [email protected] or find us on your major streaming platforms like Apple, Spotify, and Google as always.
[00:33:43] Thanks so much for listening and we’ll see you at the next one.