Friday, June 13, 2008

LPO Summit Sep 2008

I provided initial consultation for ACI's LPO Summit to be held in New York on Sep 15-16, 2008. The final agenda has come out very well, and there is promise from ACI that unlike several me-too LPO conferences being organised of late, LPO vendor population will be kept to only the best and the brightest.

A list of sessions and brief contents are as follows:
Pre-conference Workshop
Getting to Grips with Outsourcing your Legal Services Offshore: The A-Z of Negotiating, Enacting and Managing Outsourcing Relationships
Evaluating the type of work that can or should be outsourced
- Support practices versus front office/client facing services
• Examining the current sourcing methods and models used for legal outsourcing
- Onshore – captive
- Onshore –outsourcing
- Offshore – own captive
- Offshore - outsource
• Enacting an outsourcing initiative
- Sourcing and selecting a provider/partner
- Negotiating an outsourcing agreement that complies with your obligations for privacy and client confidentiality
- Change management - achieving firm-wide buy in and a cohesive outsourcing strategy
• Establishing benchmarks and metrics to measure success or failure

The State of the LPO Market: Current Trends, Viability and Adoption Rates
• Identifying the primary drivers behind legal outsourcing for:
- In-house counsel
- Law firms
• Examining recent trends in the type of services being outsourced
- Practice or administrative support functions
- Legal processes
- Specialized legal services
• Quantifying the value proposition of legal outsourcing
- Projected cost savings
- Improved resource allocation
- Revenue growth
- Increased competitive advantage
• Evaluating the scope and length of outsourcing projects – does this equate to increased confidence in legal process outsourcing?

LPO Business Models: Determining which Makes Most Sense for your Business Needs and Goals
• Examining the associated costs, cost savings and tax advantages for:
- Domestic captive
- Offshore captive
- Third party LPO service providers

• Considerations when leveraging a global labor pool
- Hiring and managing remote workers
- Controlling process, quality and training
• What are the typical transition processes and timelines?
• Evaluating the viability of a domestic captive center versus an offshore center
- Lower costs available in the mid-west
- Time zone advantage
- Opportunity to employ local resources
• Determining whether India is an offshore location for your business goals
- Cost analysis
- The availability of a qualified labor pool
- The rate of attrition
• What other offshore locations are being utilized or should be considered?

Case Studies: Why In-House Counsel Have, or Have Not, Bought into LPO

Determining the Hallmarks of a Successful Outsourcing Initiative - Selecting Services to Outsource
• Identifying the characteristics of services that have been outsourced thus far:
- High demand
- Scalable
- Lower risk
• Evaluating the type of work that is most susceptible to outsourcing
- Corporate
- Intellectual property and patent litigation
- Litigation and e-discovery
- Research
- Database technology
• Where have the greatest efficiencies and cost savings been realized?
• Determining what services to outsource first, and how to know when you’re ready to expand that scope
- Practice support services versus legal processes

Papering the Transaction - Best Practices for Structuring and Negotiating your Outsourcing Agreement
• Structuring confidentiality and non-disclosure agreements to ensure your obligations for client confidentiality and privacy are met
• Beyond the master agreement – establishing service-level benchmarks
- What type of service level agreements are appropriate?
- What current benchmarks or provisions are being used in the market?
- Establishing penalties for breach
- Highlighting specific examples of service level agreements
• Defining IP rights
- What is the industry standard?
- How to tweak for specific circumstances
• Audit rights – what should the contract demand or allow for?
• Drafting provisions that will ensure knowledge transfer and a timeframe for phasing it in
• Leveraging U.S.-India tax agreements when constructing your outsourcing contract
• What to do if a security breach occurs
- When to notify clients
- Restoring client confidence
- Determining who bears fault – and steps to take thereafter
• Thinking ahead – incorporating wind down provisions
- What happens when terminating the relationship –what is the process?
- Different termination scenarios

Questions to Ask and Key Expectations to Establish Before Selecting a LPO Service Provider
• When establishing an LPO relationship, buyers tend to focus on the answers to three key questions:
- How much will it cost?
- How well will the provider be able to deliver?
- What’s it going to be like to work with them?

Achieving Firm Wide Buy-In: Incorporating Change Management to Successfully Develop and Execute Your Legal Outsourcing Strategy
• Communicating the advantages of building offshore resources as a means to achieve overall resource allocation efficiency
• Securing appropriate management buy-in to aid in the successful adoption of legal outsourcing
• Overcoming employee feelings around a loss of control – strategies for getting users to adapt and embrace new ways of working
• Instilling acceptance of change within your in-house counsel or firm to overcome resistance to legal outsourcing

Ethical Considerations when Outsourcing Legal Services
• Examining the ethical issues regarding outsourcing legal work to India
- Unauthorized practice of law
- Duty to supervise
- Attorney-client privilege
- Confidentiality
- Client conflicts of interest
- Data and personnel security
- Export control compliance (patent specific)
- Document retention
- Billing issues for private practitioners
• State Bar Association issued opinions regarding the outsourcing of legal services and the unauthorized practice of law
• Liability questions with respect to malpractice coverage

Preserving Quality of Service and Work Product in LPO
• Developing a risk allocation framework to control or mitigate the risks surrounding LPO
• Controlling offshore operations remotely – incorporating strategies to overcome quality control challenges:
- Cultural differences
- Linguistic issues
- Training
• Best practices for handling day-to-day operations
- Instituting and maintaining proper communication channels for daily administration and quality controls
- Resolving problems and extreme situations while avoiding business disruption
- Tried and tested methods and metrics to evaluate and monitor quality, and to ensure accountability
• Establishing conflict resolution procedures
- What you need to know about utilizing commercial dispute resolutions overseas to enforce commercial rights and litigation
• Business continuity planning and disaster recovery to protect customer and company information in your partner’s hands

Avoiding the Potential Pitfalls in Litigation where Work has been Outsourced

Preventing Service Performance Issues Caused by Third Party Provider Employees
• Examining potential vendor personnel problems which could negatively impact outsourced services
- Unqualified hires
- Attrition
- Poor performance
- Lack of motivation
• Incorporating service performance into your outsourcing agreement to prevent vendor personnel issues
- Requisite skill covenants
- Skill set requirements
- Screening requirements
- Anti-turnover provisions
- Incentive bonuses
- Removal rights
- Security levels
- Indemnification requirements
• Incentivizing vendors to select and maintain an appropriate workforce to satisfy your organization’s goals in outsourced services
- Implementing discretionary work as a way to offer career development and prevent attrition

Infrastructure and Technology Requirements for Successful Legal Outsourcing
• Practical explanations and advice on the types of solutions and technology being used within legal outsourcing
• Examining the basic mechanics of linking two organizations that can be half way around the world
- WAN/LAN (Wide Area Network/Local Area Network)
- VPN (Virtual Private Network)
• Security measures for protecting confidential information
• Training staff on the technology platform to be used to send and receive work

CLE credits from the bars of New York and California area available.