Richard Conway, Deputy Group General Counsel at Coca-Cola Amatil needed a way to capture the team’s “full universe of matters.” This would ensure accuracy in reporting to business units and company leadership and save time in manual reporting and follow-up discussions. When he chose to integrate Xakia into the team’s existing workflow, he said, there was instant relief.
As one of the largest bottlers and distributors of beverages in the Asia Pacific, Coca-Cola Amatil employs more than 14,000 people and serves more than 270 million consumers. Coca-Cola Amatil distributes some of the world’s most loved beverage brands, including Coca-Cola, Diet Coke, Sprite, Powerade, Monster, Jim Beam, Canadian Club and Maker’s Mark.
In Australia, Coca-Cola Amatil’s Legal team handles the legal needs for three business units with operations in Australia, Fiji and Samoa, as well as corporate functions such as Strategy, Insurance, Treasury and Risk.
The Australian legal team’s major struggle was with reporting, according to Deputy Group General Counsel Richard Conway. It relied on a manual process that required lawyers to fill out paper forms, which an administrative staff member later compiled into an Excel spreadsheet on a monthly basis.
Without a central repository for matters or a standardized way of classifying their importance, Conway said, the team’s view of its own activity was likely incomplete, or worse, inaccurate.
Conway needed a way to capture the team’s “full universe of matters.” This would ensure accuracy in reporting to business units and company leadership and save time in manual reporting and follow-up discussions.
Conway wanted a legal tech solution that would deliver automated, real-time reporting – and allow him to eliminate the paper forms and manual entry. When he chose to integrate Xakia into the team’s existing workflow, he said, there was instant relief.
“Everyone on the Australian Legal team absolutely recognized that [manual reporting] was a ridiculous way to do things this day and age,” he said. “The team was happy to move to Xakia straight away, it was a no-brainer.”
After implementing Xakia, Conway said the team’s reporting is more timely, accurate and actionable:
- The Legal Department has eliminated lag times in their reports. The old manual method would sometimes be backlogged by up to two months. Now, Conway said, “You can look at Xakia for matters on any particular day, and you know it’s going to be accurate at that point in time.”
- The reports are complete and reliable. This eliminates a considerable amount of stress, Conway said: “Everyone understands what’s getting reported on is the full universe of issues, and ultimately that goes to your confidence as a general counsel giving information to a CEO. Now, when we provide reports to our board or managing directors, I have a lot more confidence that it’s holistic and systematic than previously.”
- The Legal Department uses data to improve its operations. Conway said before Xakia, he knew “intuitively” that trademarks consumed a lot of time, but it was hard to quantify: Simply looking at the trademark register, for example, would not show the numerous inquiries the Legal Department handled for marks that ultimately weren’t registered. After reviewing matter data in Xakia, he saw the need for more structured trademark management. He moved that work to a part-time in-house specialist, which freed the rest of the team to handle other projects.
Moreover, Conway said, by having access to real-time legal data analytics, the Legal Department can more effectively match its priorities to the strategic goals of the company: “If the business is saying ‘we’re focused on A, and we’re not actually that focused on B,’ but [Legal] is doing a lot of work for B, we can say, if that’s the business priority, we’re going to deprioritize work for B.”
July 22nd, 2019