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Radiant Law: Disruption doesn’t have to be about creating a new service, just fixing one

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Name: Radiant Law
Industry/sector: Law
Date founded: 2011
Founders: Alex Hamilton, Andrew Giverin and Jason McQuillen
Location: London

Within his statement, Hamilton wrote: Substantial changes will happen to the marketplace and that innovation is necessary just to keep up. Our clients are having to respond to the pressures of the global market to constantly reinvent and change. The pressures felt by our client are being passed through their organisations and driving their legal departments to act differently. General counsel are in turn increasingly vocally requesting change from their external providers and we should take note of what is being said.

When his warnings were dismissed, he felt he had no choice but to leave the company and start his own.

Alongside Andrew Giverin and Jason McQuillen, Hamilton set up Radiant Law on the basis of technology, which Hamilton suggested was a huge gap in the market when it came to external provision of commercial contract support”.

“We’ve been on a hell of a journey,” Hamilton said. We started as a group of six partners who knew that there could be a better way, had ideas about how to fix it, but also knew that we didn’t know most of the answers.”

McQuillen further explained: When we founded Radiant Law in 2011, we set out to deliver value to clients in ways that traditional law firms could not, or would not, do. The first thing we did was to ditch the billable hour, which had a transformational effect on the way our lawyers approached tasks and looked at topics like business improvement.

Charging on a fixed fee basis provided the right incentive to improve, to do things more efficiently, and ensure you are doing the right tasks in the right way. So there was always a natural appeal of lean, and we adopted a number of its principles from the beginning.

He suggested that lean ideas was one of the key factors behind Radiant Laws success.

It is rare that lawyers sit down and analyse their end to end processes, such as the process for producing a contract. But there are real advantages in doing so. By shining the light of lean principles onto the contracting process, we can identify duplicated steps and other waste that would otherwise have ended up on the client bill.

Clients are no longer willing to wait as matters are passed down from partner, to senior associate, to associate, to trainee and then back up again. Clients do not want to pay for the wheel to be reinvented and for junior lawyers to be trained on the job. Clients want a defined process and a commitment to continuous improvement to drive quality improvements and cost savings, and this needs to be understood by the lawyers as well as management. As an industry, law needs to stop just throwing people at the problem.

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