Struggling to innovate? Try collaborating

“The old adage ‘two heads are better than one’ proves to be true, more often than not. Why then, do professional services firms find it hard to collaborate?” asks Robert Camp, Director of Strategic Innovation at South West law firm Stephens Scown LLP.

At Stephens Scown, collaboration – both internally across the firm and externally with suppliers and clients – has been used to drive innovation.

Driving up client service

Most recently the firm has worked collaboratively with a supplier and several clients to give clients access to real-time financial data.

“The idea for this goes back a few years. I was at a legal conference and an in-house counsel was presenting. In the Q&A he was asked for the one thing his legal advisors could do to make his life easier. His answer was to provide financial information in a way that he could manipulate and easily present to his Board.

“Like many other law firms, we were guilty of sending clients financial information in a very static way. I suddenly realised this could create a lot of work for them, particularly if they had to extract the data they needed and slice and dice it in a different way,” explains Robert.

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