The CLOC Global Institute (CGI) in Las Vegas just wrapped up. The show has grown, from about 2,000 attendees last year to 2,500 this year. Attendees dug into talks from 200 speakers across more than 75 sessions, along with copious workshops, networking opportunities, and booth demos.
Our most important task at the event was listening to Legal Ops professionals talk about the challenges they’re facing and then showing them how Tonkean can help, through ad hoc conversations, our booth demos, and our Foundations of Legal Ops Workshop. We also rocked a launch party for LegalWorks, our matter lifecycle management solution that enables legal teams to harness the potential of AI-powered process automation technology safely.
We learned a lot from all of our interactions at CGI 2023! Here are our biggest takeaways:
1. Excitement around AI has energized the Legal Ops space.
Although AI technology has been relatively mature for some years now, in 2023 it’s reached an entirely new level. That’s largely due to the way generative AI, and especially large language models (LLMs) like GPT-4, have reached a tipping point where they’ve become particularly powerful and applicable to the needs of organizations of all kinds.
For example, there are more tools than ever for applying AI to solve aspects of contract lifecycle management; it’s a use case that’s well-suited for AI. Another area that’s ripe for AI and automation is matter management, because it consumes so much time yet consists largely of repetitious and often mundane and simple tasks, like triaging emails.
There are some fears and skepticism that exist alongside the excitement, of course. And it’s prudent to be circumspect about the application of any new technology—to understand its opportunities and limitations, and ensure that it’s safe.
2. Adoption of new technology in Legal remains relatively slow.
People in some markets tend to jump on the latest technologies, always looking for a disruptive edge. That’s not the case in others—especially Legal, a field that’s historically slow to change.
It’s understandable. Legal departments in large organizations are all about reducing risk. Change of any kind introduces new risk vectors. Because AI tools are so powerful, and because most people still have a lot to learn about how they work, there’s a sense among some that they’re especially risky.
But there's a difference between avoiding change out of fear and welcoming change with care and wisdom. The latter just takes a while, and given the excitement we’re seeing around AI, it’s just a matter of time before more and more legal departments employ AI and automation to make their legal operations run faster and more efficiently.
3. Legal pros crave more education about AI.
Everyone wants to learn more about AI. At CGI 2023, the more people learned, the more excited they became. For example, one of the key features Tonkean provides with LegalWorks is visibility into legal requests—in other words, auditability—which is of enormous importance to legal departments that are working hard to ensure compliance.
A major barrier to the adoption of any new technology is understanding how it even works. But everyone who's interested will eventually catch up. Consider this: It wasn’t that long ago that enterprise folks were trying to wrap their collective heads around the concept of cloud computing; these days, SaaS is just a given.
AI is such a paradigm-shifting set of technologies that it requires a lot of education—the pros and cons, how to use it safely, and also just practically how it works. Fortunately, there are plenty of resources out there to guide everyone, including from Tonkean.
Get started with Tonkean’s LegalWorks platform now, with a free demo!