Leading international law firm Clifford Chance today launches its new report - Defining tomorrow’s legal function through its relationships. The report captures the views and insights from some of the world’s leading companies to help define the expectations and aspirations for in-house counsel. The report looks at how the role of in-house legal function is evolving to one that is more outward facing, internally connected and empowered by data and technology.
A selection of the report's highlights:
- In-house legal teams’ relationship with data and technology is transforming all its other relationships
- General counsels pointed to significant shifts in approaches to risk management, external advisers and the business
- They also identified new relationships, such as the one with a company’s employees, that are a growing priority.
The firm worked with RSGi who interviewed in-house counsel and their teams from ten industry leading businesses. The report aims to start an ongoing discussion about their changing roles – how they currently operate and where they hope to be in 2025.
The legal function’s changing roles are examined through the prism of its relationships. An advisory board of senior general counsels from Walt Disney Company, Unilever, Nokia and DBS Bank identified eight key relationships with employees, stakeholders, knowledge, data and technology, the business, within the legal function, and external advisors. The goal for in-house legal functions is to identify how these relationships interconnect and become intentional, rather than incidental. This dynamic is captured in a new framework: the relationship model.