Elevate has become the first law company to subscribe to Legal Metrics, which automates the provision of anonymous diversity data, avoiding the disclosure of personal information. Elevate, which provides consulting, technology and services to law departments and law firms including HSBC Holdings, Fitbit, Juniper Networks, VMware and Reed Smith, will also be sharing Legal Metrics with its customers. ‘Law company’ refers to the fact that Elevate practices as a company rather than a partnership. It identifies as much with the Big Four as much as with alternative legal services provider (ALSPs), and eschews the term ‘alternative’.
It is hoped that the Elevate-Legal Metrics partnership will advance the gathering and sharing of DEI information and bring closer the goal of standardized measures of metrics that allow ‘like-to-like’ comparisons.
“Achieving greater diversity in the law industry is a team effort, and time is of the essence,” said Pratik Patel, VP of Innovation at Elevate. “As law company involvement in legal portfolios grows, so does the responsibility to provide data and transparency to GCs and their teams. Diversity tracking is a high priority for law departments but comes with difficulties since the data tools and templates are different across customers. Working with Legal Metrics, Elevate can eliminate these problems for ourselves and our customers by making it easy to load, share, and access our diversity data without releasing sensitive data.
“Elevate will use our subscription to Legal Metrics to calculate and publish critical diversity metrics to our customers, and we encourage other law companies to join us.”
Speaking to Legal IT Insider, Legal Metrics’ client & community engagement lead, Ryan Steadman said: “Elevate is not just the first law company client but they are also taking our technology to their legal departments to introduce the ability to automate diversity tracking. A lot of law firms are giving away personal information, or else under disclosing diversity. What legal departments really care about is what percentage diversity they have working on their matters. Are we giving diverse staff complex matters? They really care about that. Until recently no-one was able to give them aggregated information, but Legal Metrics can.”
Steadman adds: “It has been such an enormous amount of manual effort to calculate diversity metrics inside law firms and industry surveys only come out once a year. In order to effect change, you need a higher frequency of better data to make sure that the diversity movement that we all care about so much becomes a leading metric as opposed to something we learn about six months later.”