Legal industry management consultancy Janders Dean has hired its first US director with the arrival of respected Seyfarth Shaw global director Andrew Baker as legal transformation practice group head. Baker, who joined Janders Dean just over a month ago, was most recently global director of legal product and technology at Seyfarth’s consultancy arm, SeyfarthLean, responsible for the strategy and construction of technology products to improve legal workflow, transparency and collaboration.

Baker was instrumental in the creation of the SeyfarthLean client solutions group, comprised of client-facing business and technology professionals aimed at improving the delivery of Seyfarth’s legal services. He also led on the creation of the 800-lawyer firm’s legal technology innovations office, which focussed on product innovation and technology-focussed services.

Among other projects, Baker has led the design, development and release of Seyfarth’s signature and award-winning legal management platform, SeyfarthLink, which replaces extranets, joint databases, litigation databases, deal rooms and document collections and acts as the launch pad for Seyfarth’s other technology offerings.

At Janders Dean, Baker, who before working at Seyfarth was Reed Smith’s global senior manager for knowledge management, will run the transformation team working with both in-house and private practice clients. Baker will help Janders Dean’s clients in areas including technology, data analysis, process improvement and process management and told Legal IT Insider: “I’ll be helping law firms and corporate legal teams look at different ways to evolve given the market pressures they’re under. There is more opportunity to evolve; technology is more advanced to the point you can bring things on board much more than you could five years ago.”

Janders Dean’s largest client base is in London and Australia but it has clients across the Asia Pacific region and the US, including South America. Baker said: “It gives us a more even global coverage by having someone full time in the US.” Baker will focus on serving Janders Deans existing clients and said: “Naturally over time that will evolve but for now the purpose is to service a market we know well.”

Janders Dean founder and director Justin North added: “I have known Andrew and worked with him in several capacities for almost five years. He led some of the most innovative and transformative initiatives in the legal industry over this time. Through the projects he has worked on, Andrew has developed a skillset with tremendous breadth and depth. Our client base is diverse, in makeup and geography, and the challenges they are facing continue to evolve. It is wonderful to be able to add a unique talent like Andrew.”