Legal Project Manager

View more Jobs by
Opporecruitment
Reference
VAC-1347833
Sector
Legal
Salary
£65,000 to £75,000 Per Annum
Location
Central London
Job Type
Permanent
Date Posted
14th November 2019

Job Description

Legal Project Manager 

Our clients increasingly expect us to invest in new innovative approaches to reduce their costs, improve outcomes and enhance their service experience. Our leadership in this area is something we refer to as "Best Delivery". To better support our partners in designing innovative approaches to matter delivery, we are creating a cross-functional virtual team, distributed across our offices, including continuous improvement, legal project management, resource managers, pricing experts and legal tech delivery advisors.

The Legal Project Management function is part of the firm's Best Delivery programme. Our commitment to clients means we are reshaping our services around your evolving needs to make delivery quicker, simpler, more efficient and more robust.

Every client requirement is unique. So we listen, then provide the best mix of legal talent and technology for each task. By applying our expertise, embracing innovation and investing across the network in smart technology, we are setting new standards in the outcomes and value achieved. That makes our delivery more effective, every time.

The Legal Project Manager (LPM) is instrumental in bringing together specialist expertise with the smartest tools and resources on the matters they support and help deliver an outstanding client experience.

The function has grown steadily since we first introduced Legal Project Managers in 2015 and is now embedded across the company network in the Americas, London, Continental Europe and APAC.

We dedicate Legal Project Managers to our most significant mandates to ensure that each matter is well organised, is delivered with the utmost efficiency and that the client is kept up-to-date every step of the way.

The Legal Project Manager will be responsible for supporting the delivery of the full matter lifecycle for a portfolio of significant matters. The success of this role will be measured by: achieving good levels of engagement with key stakeholders; achieving measurable benefits from the activities undertaken; and adding value to the organisation by contributing to the development and roll out of legal project management best practices, tools and techniques.

Working in collaboration with the File Partner and the Managing Associate, Legal Project Executives, Legal Support Secretaries and other available Business Services resources as appropriate, the LPM will be expected to take responsibility for supporting the delivery of the full matter lifecycle, from pricing and inception through to the completion of post-closing activities, for a portfolio of significant matters (or work streams within those matters), to ensure that they are delivered in accordance with the client's needs, efficiently, on budget and within timeframe.

The LPM will be expected to contribute to the development of legal project management tools and best practices at the Firm and provide training in project management techniques and best practices to lawyers.

This will include some or all of the following (depending on the precise nature of the matter):

  • In consultation with clients and colleagues, prepare scope, resourcing and budget proposals for relevant matters or work streams and then track progress against those proposals, alerting the relevant stakeholders promptly to variances and recommending changes and developing contingency plans where necessary
  • working with the File Partners and Managing Associates, and consulting as necessary with the Work Allocation Partners or Resource Managers, ensure that relevant matters are adequately and appropriately resourced at all times, taking in to account anticipated changes in matter activity and the upcoming workload and availability of members of the matter team
  • arrange appropriate kick-off meetings or communications, ensure that members of the relevant matter teams are adequately briefed about the nature of the matters and the client's expectations and ensure that they are kept up-to-date about any relevant changes through regular update meetings and other communications as appropriate
  • maintain or arrange for the maintenance of appropriate communications channels and resources, such as working party lists, team email distribution lists and online deal and data rooms
  • ensure that any applicable information barriers and/or insider lists are established and maintained
  • act as the interface, where appropriate, to matter-specific and other personnel at the client, lawyers in other practice areas and offices, external and opposing counsel and third party service providers
  • develop matter timetables to track milestones, deliverables and dependencies and produce periodic reports to provide status updates for both internal and external stakeholders
  • proactively identify any risks and issues that arise, provide options for their mitigation or resolution and take or co-ordinate the taking of appropriate responsive actions
  • assist the File Partner and Managing Associate with the billing process and provide update reports for the client as required
  • arrange post-closing matter reviews and lessons learned exercises

Experience:

  • solid background in project management, preferably gained in a law firm or a professional services environment.
  • significant experience of managing teams and supporting complex, multi-jurisdictional matters or engagements (ideally, in a dedicated project management capacity).

Skills:

Business awareness:

  • understands law firm financial and performance metrics, the link between effective matter management, profitability and delivering value to clients
  • strong analytical skills; able to analyse financial reports of varying levels of complexity

Client focus:

  • ability to build strong relationships with clients keeping them directly informed and up-to-date with developments
  • understands how client organisations function internally and shows sensitivity to cultural factors and the difference between clients

Problem solving with commercial insight:

  • able to absorb and explain complex issues clearly and concisely
  • able to understand the commercial rationale underlying a client's matter or the Firm's business, and demonstrate an understanding of data and concepts appropriate to the business problem
  • willing to challenge and question assumptions; proposes alternative and sometimes novel solutions
  • justifies recommendations and is able to handle objections and counter-proposals rationally
  • rises above the detail to see broader implications, in terms of both long-term consequences of action and effects on the business analysis and areas outside of own field of expertise

Communication:

  • produces clear, high-quality documents (for example, timetables and status reports) that clients can readily understand
  • demonstrates consistently high-quality communications: written and oral
  • demonstrates an understanding of the audience's needs and the nature of the information being shared
  • has good negotiating skills, including the ability to listen to other points of view, uses reasoned argument and finds compromise where necessary

Leading and managing

  • provides project management support for the conduct of a matter, including regular updates to the client and monthly billing
  • has strong planning skills: ensures client matters are resourced, monitored and progress in accordance with client expectations and deadlines are met
  • able to work under pressure, handle multiple tasks simultaneously, prioritise appropriately and delegate to others
  • anticipates risks to implementation of a matter or project and can deal with problems
  • clearly communicates the demands of the task to all concerned and briefs team members appropriately
  • ensures collective experiences of best practice are captured and utilised to good effect

Relationship building and networking:

  • demonstrates commitment to the team by supporting other team members and helping them deliver high-quality service to clients

Qualifications

  • It is essential that you have project management experience with a strong academic history. Although not essential, a formal project management qualification, such as PRINCE2 or PMP would be desirable, as would a prior career as a lawyer, but neither is essential.

 

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