We asked Legal Value Network member, Roycee Hasuko, the Director of Product Engagement at SimpleLegal to tell us more about her career path, what she loves most about what she does. Connect with Roycee on LinkedIn.
Tell us how you got into your field.
It was a lucky coincidence! Family circumstances moved me to the Bay Area, and I was in the right place at the right time. I’m an attorney in Washington State and have worked across a wide range of fields from public service, mediation and case management to project management and database development. Salesforce was looking to expand its legal ops function and the hiring manager, who had prior experience in the public sector, spotted transferable skills and gave me the opportunity to apply them in a new field and context.
What do you love most about what you do?
I enjoy solving problems, helping people, and learning – and I get to do all three as the Director of Product Engagement at SimpleLegal. It’s a unique situation where I have the opportunity to leverage my experience as a legal ops professional in new ways. Whether it’s working with customers to identify a better process through technology or collaboration with other legal ops professionals on industry best practices, there are many opportunities to make a difference.
What do you think are some of the biggest challenges facing law firms today in their relationship with outside counsel and the major changes and threats in the legal industry?
In-house legal teams have increasingly high expectations of their law firms, seeking insights beyond legal advice. This is a huge challenge that requires law firms to take a more holistic approach to their clients’ matters. Instead of providing advice at the individual matter or practice group level, firms must (at least!) take a client’s industry, product, regulatory climate and existing regulations into account. Plus, advice must be backed by data. For every matter that’s being worked on, a firm must understand its historical performance and how it might affect the advice provided to their clients.
Newer market entrants in the form of ALSPs and consulting shops often have more experience taking a business-minded approach to working with outside counsel. Law firms must adopt this mindset, migrating away from a legal-centric approach. Firms that embrace technology to collect data and drive visibility into work that’s being done, and incorporate contextual information are the ones that will find success. It’s not an easy task, but one that is sure to improve client service delivery and overall experience to create meaningful, long-term business partnerships.
How has your role changed as a result of the pandemic?
Having joined SimpleLegal right before the pandemic in February 2020, my role, which had been newly created, hasn’t necessarily changed. However, it has probably evolved a little differently than it might have without the pandemic. Each of our clients has been, and continues to be, impacted by the pandemic in different ways. I’m grateful that I am able to be a resource to our customers during this unprecedented time, providing guidance on process development, system architecture and data analysis to ensure that legal ops and greater in-house teams remained operational – unfortunately, with fewer resources in some cases.
Tell us a fun or surprising fact about yourself.
My first job out of college was a juvenile detention guard!