Andrea is a Delivery Manager currently working in our Data Services Practice. She is responsible for ensuring that our projects are delivered on time, on budget and to the highest quality possible. She also works on building our internal processes as the practice area and company grows.
Andrea is based in London, UK.
Tell us about your career path and how you ended up at SYKE?
I started my career as a paralegal at a national law firm, where I realised that becoming a lawyer may not be the career path I had imagined. I had very little responsibility and was being asked to do repetitive tasks which weren’t helping me to progress in my career. I saw my friends facing similar challenges in their trainee roles and realised there must be a better option for me.
I took some time out to complete a foundation master’s degree in International Law at Shanghai Jiao Tong University, where I was exposed to technological advances in the law.
There is a big shortage of lawyers in China, which has led to increased take up of legal tech and AI. A couple of my favourite examples:
- Courts in China use technology to assist with judicial decision making and make trials more efficient (utilises big data and AI training from previous trial to help in the decision making process). You can read more here.
- FaGouGou – an innovative company using AI legal consultancy services so people in remote places can access AI backed legal services.
When I returned to the UK, inspired by my experiences in Shanghai, I started working at Luminance, a leading legal AI company. I first worked in sales before being promoted to a Product Specialist position and eventually became global head of the team.
I oversaw all proof of concept projects with law firms and in-house legal team clients, and was ultimately responsible for customer success and helping to secure the sale of the product.
I joined SYKE in May 2021. I liked the sound of the consultative and client-facing nature of my role; and that we get to work with lots of different technologies. I was also really impressed by the culture of trust and transparency at SYKE – a far cry from my paralegal days!
And of course I was also drawn to the flexibility of being a completely remote company – I’m quite an active person with other mini projects going on here and there so it really works for me.
What’s surprised you about working here?
The breadth of projects that are worked on. It seems that we are able to solve almost any legal operations issue with legal technology!
One of my most rewarding projects (so far!) involved configuring AI models (on Microsoft Cognitive Search platform) to identify information in marketing and advertising challenges. For example, if the company had made a claim that a handwash “could help kill COVID-19” and this was unsubstantiated, they would receive challenge letters from regulators and competitors. The AI would then automatically extract information upon upload to the system and store that information (who the challenge is from, date, what product it was a challenge to etc). This saves the legal team a lot of time and allows them to get to the heart of the issue instead of wasting time on repetitive document review exercises.
What have been your highlights of working for SYKE so far?
I recently had the opportunity to attend LegalGeek in London – it was the first conference I had been to for two years and it was great to meet colleagues and see old faces in person. I thought it was really exciting to see the legal tech community out in force and how much people support eachother in the industry.
What advice would you give to someone starting out their career in Legal Tech?
Probably to try and keep up with what technologies can/cannot do. This will help you understand the industry as a whole and speak confidently about it – even better if you can get your hands on and try out different platforms and technologies!