Linklaters has partnered with legal design consultancy TLB to provide clients with a tech + legal services offering that will enable them to update and digitise their contracts and precedent banks, underpinned by Linklaters’ contract negotiation platform CreateiQ.
The magic circle law firm, which has already worked with TLB on the drafting of its open-source non-disclosure agreement, oneNDA, says that clients can now benefit from the combination of Linklaters legal advice, TLB’s experience in legal transformation, and access to CreateiQ.
Speaking to Legal IT Insider, Linklaters global head of practice innovation, Greg Baker, said: “We’re finding that clients are doing a lot of work internally on contract optimisation; on their playbooks; on contract design; and on legal technology implementation, often in conjunction with CreateiQ. Our lawyers help clients draft not just contracts but precedents, and when clients say they want the best starting point for this commercial agreement, Linklaters lawyers are well-placed to help. But when the client then needs to digitise the agreement and work out how the legal team will use it, that is TLB’s sweet spot. That is the combined offering.”
While Linklaters already has a track record of working with TLB, which was founded in 2017 by CEO Electra Japonas, Baker says: “This is taking it further than a single document,” adding, “We started with oneNDA and have learned from that.”
While it is envisaged that how Linklaters and TLB work together will be different across each engagement, Baker says: “One of the real case studies was around a client wrestling with supply chain issues and needing to get their supply chain in order to work out where their risks are. It might be a combination of TLB finding the contracts and and finding a process for triaging the risks; Linklaters doing an analysis and preparing best practices and improving the contracts; and then TLB saying ‘now you have top notch contracts we will digitise them onto CreateiQ, so you now have a standard process that covers those risks you were concerned about.’ That is similar for any other client that has regulatory concerns and wants an internal process to analyse and triage them.”
While Linklaters works for some of the largest corporates who have – in many cases – in-house teams larger than the average law firm, Baker says they work for plenty of startups, scale-ups and other clients who are looking for that sort of support. He said: “We’ve had conversations with clients about this a number of times and there is a demand for it. Yes they want legal advice on contract drafting and advisory and regulatory work, but now they also want to implement that across the in-house function with a view to digitising and automating their processes.”