My Clifford Chance Career - Legal Project Manager
Prior to becoming a Legal Project Manager (LPM), I was an Associate in the Banking and Finance team in our Singapore office. In that role, I would typically be tasked with specific items relating to a larger project, but would rarely see a matter through from inception to end. I could see a number of process improvements in our daily matter management and became interested in streamlining the way we run deals.
I transitioned into my current role as a Legal Project Manager when an opening came up in the Singapore office in October 2017. This opening was the first LPM role in APAC and the concept was not well understood by most people in the region. As colleagues and clients started gaining an appreciation for the various ways an LPM can deliver value on matters, I was getting up to speed with all the legal technology and tools available to us to help streamline our processes.
As a Legal Project Manager, I am involved in Best Delivery by managing legal matters from inception to end with an aim of ensuring that we deliver our matters to the highest standards and in the most efficient way. I work closely with the matter team to ensure that everyone is aware of upcoming deliverables, WIP status and the status of various workstreams. I also identify, deploy and manage Best Delivery solutions on matters to improve the way we deliver our services.
Through engagement on several large, cross-jurisdictional matters, I have developed a practical understanding of the solutions that are available to deliver benefits to both clients and our people and how these can be most effectively utilised. As a result client teams both within Clifford Chance and on the client side have also developed a much clearer understanding of and confidence in the function of LPMs.
Recently, the firm won two corporate and technology mandates. LPMs were part of the core team and attended proposal discussions with the client. After winning the mandates, the clients told us that our LPM offering and involvement in the whole tendering process was one of the key aspects of our proposal that distinguished us from other law firms.
I find this role extremely rewarding because LPMs get a bird's eye view of matters from beginning to end. We also are in the unique position of deploying legal technology in large, live matters where we can immediately see improvement in efficiency and provide valuable feedback on the functionalities of the technology deployed.
Law firms generally are struggling to find enough LPMs to match the rapidly growing demand from clients who increasingly want this skill set supporting their matters. To support the growing demand for LPM support from both clients and our own client teams, the LPM function has developed some smart solutions to extend the impact of this valuable resource. These include a tiered support offering ranging from full service for deployment on the complex client mandates, to a self-service model where we provide training and access to matter management templates, processes and tools. Our latest solution is the creation of a new Legal Project Analyst support team based in our Delhi office.
Legal project management is a fast evolving, challenging and very rewarding function where no to days are alike. I'm so pleased I had the opportunity to get on board.