At Dechert we strive to foster a culture of innovative thinking and excellence in service to our clients. Innovation is an essential part of who we are and how we work so we have established management practices, adopted motivational tactics, and invested in resources that position our community to be innovative by:
- Having the autonomy to decide how to best carry out challenging work, giving our people a sense of purpose.
- Creating an environment that encourages creativity and supports new ways of doing things.
- Recognizing our people for their innovative ideas, share their stories and award their accomplishments.
We Train Our People To Be Agents of Change
Research shows that we all have innovative traits of varying degrees but through education and training we can improve our ability to use these traits to ultimately infuse more innovation into what we do every day for ourselves, our firm and our clients. At Dechert we agree with this wholeheartedly and make significant investment in our people to train them to be innovators.
We have developed a unique certification program for lawyers and business service professionals to explore their inner innovator through an intensive training program. The program is aimed at promoting shifts in mindsets, behaviors, and organizational culture by training Dechert people on methodologies, tools and techniques that would allow them to see the firm, their work, clients, colleagues and careers differently, to come up with ideas to enhance what they do and, more importantly, translate those ideas into action.
The firm also provides innovation training on-demand to our community. The Innovation Curriculum is designed to provide our people with the tools needed to think differently, to explore new possibilities and effect positive change within the firm and with our clients. From self-paced coursework to Ted Talks, live events and trainings, the materials provided lay the foundation for becoming an agent of change and helps Dechert professionals harness a creative mindset and develop problem solving skills.
We Encourage Idea Generation
It takes a lot of ideas to generate just one really good idea and so we encourage our people to share their ideas on an ongoing basis. Throughout the year, on any given day, members of our community can submit innovative ideas to the Dechert Idea Bank. This platform is available to all personnel to share with the wider community innovative ideas aimed at elevating the firm’s service offering and delivery, as well as improving the experience of working at Dechert. At Dechert, the entire community can review the idea and show their support through the ‘like’ feature. The firm also hosts Dechert Spark Tank, a friendly competition amongst colleagues, where participants submit ideas and the ‘finalists’ share their ideas in more detail through a pitch video. Viewers vote for their favorite idea and the firm funds the implementation of the winning idea!
We Celebrate and Receive Recognition for Innovative Ideas
We take great pride in the innovative ideas and approaches that our people take, whether in relation to client work, the client experience or internally supporting our business operations. It is important that we acknowledge and recognize everyone for their contributions, and we do this in a variety of ways.
Annually, we recognize the efforts and accomplishments of our people who are making a difference on the innovation front through our Innovator Award but the recognition doesn’t stop there. Members of the Innovation Certificate Program are all recognized for their commitment to innovation when they pitch their ideas to the chief executives across the firm. The firm has a network of Innovation Ambassadors who are featured in articles, interviews and the like for their contributions to the firm and our clients on this front.
Externally, the firm has received recognition for our unique Innovation Certificate Program and our Summer Associate Innovation Bootcamp.
We Develop Innovative Technology
Technology solutions make a big difference in how we practice law.
Every year, our innovation team is involved in over two hundred different projects across our client base to modernize our legal processes. Whether this means automating tasks, using artificial intelligence, or building bespoke solutions, we have done it.
We have a large number of legal practice technology solutions that we use on a daily basis to assist our clients. Find out more by contacting any of our attorneys with whom you regularly work.
Innovation in a law firm is as good as its capacity to capture ideas from across the organization and translate the great ones into practice. Our clients and people know that at Dechert we walk the talk when it comes to innovation. In 2022, we launched the Dechert Idea Bank, an open platform where people submit their ideas and track their progress after that. In 2023, we doubled down with Dechert’s I-Lab, an initiative aimed at turning into reality ideas that are considered of strategic importance and that, due to the fast pace of change these days, require specially dedicated resources for prompt execution”.
Our Innovation Incubator allows us to fund projects worthy of long-term investment with billable hours credit and financial resources. These are investments that our firm makes because of the long-term beneficial impact on our clients and our organization. In the past years, attorneys at Dechert have spent 1,000s of hours on over 30 different Incubator projects.
At Dechert we believe innovation should translate into creative ways to address challenges that are radically different from how we’re traditionally trained as lawyers. This is why we invest significantly in training our people on design thinking methodologies that then can be applied to real-life scenarios. We do this through hands-on, immersive in-person innovation workshops, where our Practice Groups get together to discuss strategic topics concerning their teams and clients, brainstorm and produce innovative ideas that are key to keeping our firm ahead of the game.”
Clients need advisors to be efficient without risking a loss in quality, so we have onboarded a variety of technology tools to augment and double-check our work. We are currently using AI to scan documents, tools to compare dozens of documents at the same time, and automations to generate documents. The tools generate millions of dollars in value for clients – either in time saved or as risks avoided.
Our commitment to innovation starts with making sure all of our lawyers and business service professionals are dynamic problem-solvers and creative thinkers. Dechert’s Innovation Certificate Program, which has so far trained almost 150 professionals over the last three years, is our flagship in-depth innovation training where we teach our people to think differently, be bold, challenge the status quo and propose ideas that we can then implement to improve the way we work and serve our clients.”
By the Numbers
Click each number to see how they tie in with Innovation@Dechert