FTI releases 2022 Legal Counsel Report
73% of heads of legal departments at large companies say they are not currently using Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology in their department’s processes, but many recognize the potential value it could bring to their business. early case assessment, contract analysis, understanding large data sets and M&A issues. This is stated in Part Three of The General Counsel Report 2022: Leading with Endurance Through Risk, Culture and Technology Challenges, prepared by FTI Consulting in conjunction with Relativity. Respondents discussed technology trends within their departments, including the state of digital transformation, as well as how in-house lawyers rate themselves and their peers on technology skills.
According to Javier García Chappell, General Manager of Technology Services at FTI Consulting in Spain, “the report shows growing concern among legal directors due to the proliferation of new sources of information (emerging data sources) and the implications of teleworking that has been going on for longer. Legal teams must be prepared for an increasingly varied influx of data and its impacts on privacy, security, regulatory compliance, investigations and e-Discovery.”
Thus, 97% of corporate legal directors play a role in their organization’s technology ecosystem, and 87% say they are very involved in technology planning and acquisition, beyond budget approval. Another data that stands out is the participation in technological decision-making, which has increased by 13% compared to the previous two years, due to the improvement of the role of the general counsel or the appointment of more staff.
The pandemic has acted as an accelerator for technology initiatives in 43% of organizations, and a third of legal directors say they already have roadmaps to support their departments by implementing cutting-edge technologies and updating key systems .
Only 33% of respondents agree that lawyers have adequate technological knowledge and skills. This figure is 20% lower than in the previous year’s study, and many respondents said they believe – given increasing levels of data risk and demand for legal department efficiency – that the need for technical expertise is greater than ever, and some of them consider it a critical area.
For José Piñeiro, Senior General Manager of Forensic-Litigation Consulting Services at FTI Consulting in Spain, “Given the data trends and new risks we are seeing with our clients, corporate legal officers are increasingly aware the need for technological training. At the same time, they also realize that they must integrate resources in this area to be able to adequately respond to the challenges and possible impacts of new emerging information technologies”.