City law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner (BLP) has launched Streamline, a “process improvement service” designed to cope with the legal challenges of big construction projects and complex or high-volume litigation.
Streamline has been developed from BLP’s existing process improvement service, to help collaboration between the law firm’s internal departments, their particular legal team and other professional advisers such as architects, surveyors and accountants.
Cathy Mattis, head of process improvement, said the aim of the service was to build project management into the process right at the start.
She said Streamline would run “efficiency workshops”, perhaps with 15 executives involved on a big project and lasting around three hours.
After taking them through how the firm would work with them from start to finish, participants would be presented with a visual map of the project and a list of potential improvements.
“Streamline helps to ensure that the right things are being done in the right order, at the right time, by the right people,” Ms Mattis said. “It helps us to eliminate waste without compromising on our clients’ goals.
“It also helps ensure there are no nasty surprises popping out of the process, because people understand in advance what they need to do”.
Ms Mattis said corporate finance specialist Priya Lele and real estate solicitor Lynn MacKay had joined her as dedicated members of the Streamline team. She said the team had already visited the British Virgin Islands and BLP’s service delivery centre in Manchester.
She said the pilot programme for Streamline had helped major clients, such as four FTSE100 firms and, both internally and externally, had been applied to over 90 projects.
“Mapping the process and producing a visual picture can lead to all kinds of conversations as to how things could be done differently,” she said. “We may be able to offer clients support from our international offices, or one of our teams in Manchester or by calling in Lawyers on Demand to help cope with the peaks and troughs.”
Streamline is part of the law firm’s Integrated Client Service Model, launched in March this year. It is made up of four elements: Streamline, the “virtual transaction teams” used to help project manage support from Lawyers on Demand and communicate it to clients; the use of third party providers, such as global partners, and the BLP Manchester service delivery team.