“Let’s throw out the rule book”: Macpherson Kelley’s new CIO talks strategy

Following his appointment in March to CIO at Melbourne-headquartered commercial law firm Macpherson Kelley, Andrew Mitchell tells us that he has three key priorities, one of which is a deep dive look at how the firm operates and how it would work differently if it could start again, unrestrained by current practices.
Mitchell joined Macpherson Kelley in March, with chief executive officer Steve Parker highlighting at the time his background in IT transformation. Prior to joining Macpherson Kelley, Mitchell was CIO and operations manager at Xenith IP. He has also held roles as CIO and director of national operations at Griffith Hack; CIO at leading law firm Gilbert + Tobin; and director of technology & innovation at Lander & Rogers.
A few weeks into the current job, Mitchell tells us: “I’m taking my team and the business on a massive change journey, including finalising our strategy and roadmap to move our entire technology stack to the cloud and preferably all SaaS.
“We have three key priorities for this next 12 months:
– our move to Office 365 is happening right now (this will be my second such implementation of migrating a business to O365)
– moving the business to a data driven mindset with the introduction of new suite of financial reporting, business intelligence and analytics;
– and a deep dive review of some of our legal practices work practices, looking at how we do business internally and most important how we deliver for our clients. I liken this to, if we could start this up as a new start up business, would you do it this way (restricted by current practices and possibly systems) or would you do it differently?”
He adds: “Let’s throw the rule book out and start again!”
“Andrew is an outstanding leader who has led major IT transformations for law firms and industrial companies in Australia and overseas,” Parker said at the time of Mitchell’s arrival. Mitchell was named among the top 50 CIOs in Australia by CIO magazine in 2016.
Macpherson Kelley is particularly well known for its media law capability and acts for some of Australia’s biggest media companies. They have been involved in significant high profile matters including the recent “Lawyer X” scandal in Victoria in which Nicola Gobbo was unmasked as a police informer, and resisting suppression orders in the Geoffrey Rush defamation case.