3 Companies That Transformed Their Legal Spend with Brightflag’s E-Billing Platform
The Brightflag Customer Experience: Insights and Takeaways
Almost none of the legal operations leaders I talk to on a weekly basis doubt their need to transform legal spend management practices within their organization.
Almost all of the legal operations leaders I talk to on a weekly basis (at least initially) doubt their ability to transform legal spend management practices within their organization.
I attribute this phenomenon to two factors.
The first is that Legal and Finance are among the most complex, high-stakes, and risk-averse quadrants within any company. It’s intimidating terrain for anyone tasked with promoting change.
The second is a lack of proven paths to follow. Practitioners of this emerging discipline are still writing their best practice playbooks in pencil rather than pen at the moment. (And most don’t have time to write anything at all!)
And the latter challenge is something I can help with here. Because while our customers are busy delivering everyday results, we’ve made a habit of documenting the lessons learned and milestones passed along the way.
Below you’ll find three excellent stories about organizations that adopted Brightflag’s e-billing system and experienced transformation as a result.
Ironclad Gets Ahead of Business Growth
When Chris Young assumed the role of solo general counsel at Ironclad in 2018, the company’s eventual path to market leadership was already coming into focus. And if the startup scaled according to plan, he knew he would need to prepare for a corresponding rise in demand for in-house legal services.
Young soon made two pivotal, proactive decisions.
The first was appointing a legal operations specialist, Crystal Wu, as his next in-house hire. Together the two sketched the framework for a corporate legal department that could be transparent and efficient by design.
The second, and closely related, decision was empowering Wu to adopt Brightflag’s legal spend management platform.
Between reviewing invoices by hand, building spend reports via spreadsheet, and reconciling accounts payable via email, Wu was already dedicating more time than she would like to financial fundamentals.
Would in-house attorneys eventually have to absorb some of that administrative burden as workload doubled or tripled in the years ahead? Neither Wu nor Young wanted to find out.
By leveraging Brightflag’s AI-powered platform, Ironclad’s lean in-house legal team has easily risen to the demands of startup success. Wu now measures legal spend management tasks in minutes instead of hours and Young has gained new layers of data-driven insight to share with fellow executives.
- Implemented Brightflag in 22 days
- Reduced invoice review time by 80%
Ocado Saves Big With Automated Workflows
Time-consuming and error-prone. By Ocado’s own admission, those had become the best descriptors of the team’s legal invoice review process. And it’s a fate common to many otherwise exemplary corporate legal departments when business grows exponentially and operations expand internationally.
What’s less common is what Ocado chose to do about it.
First, Ocado’s longtime Head of Commercial Law, Amy Brookbanks, stepped forward to become the company’s first-ever legal operations lead. Invoice review was just one of several recurring processes that Amy saw as ripe for innovation and she knew that forging transformation had to be a full-time role.
Next, Ocado shrewdly selected a single tech platform that could address several concerns at once.
Brightflag partnered with Amy to engineer a new invoicing workflow that automated currency conversion, tax calculation, and accounts payable (AP) integration — ensuring compliance long before bills reached Ocado’s finance team for final approval. Brightflag’s AI engine also helped invoice reviewers spot guideline violations and verify discount applications within seconds.
This ultimately translated to faster payment cycles for outside counsel, significant time savings for in-house lawyers, and meaningful cost reductions for Ocado. (All while generating a host of data-driven insights Amy now uses to benchmark performance, negotiate rates, and inform executives.)
- Achieved 150% of annual cost control goal
- Eliminated 1,470 hours of admin work in first year
Dropbox Resets Finance Team Relationship
The Dropbox brand is synonymous with cutting-edge technology, so it was no surprise to learn that the company was already using a legal spend management tool several years before discovering Brightflag. The problem was, Dropbox’s continued business growth was quickly revealing the limitations of its legacy software provider.
Dropbox’s Finance team was frequently rejecting law firm invoices on account of unauthorized currencies and inaccurate allocations. Its in-house legal team was consistently struggling to review bills and generate practical reports. And both groups were growing increasingly tired of the associated headaches.
When Senior Intellectual Property Paralegal, Amy Drury, ultimately spearheaded the switch to Brightflag, integrating our legal spend management platform with Dropbox’s core AP system became top priority. Amy knew this automated connection could immediately eliminate hours of frustration for both sides of the Legal-Finance partnership.
With that technical integration complete, the focus soon shifted to more strategic concerns. The Brightflag Customer Success team worked closely with Amy to translate the vast array of available vendor, matter, and spend data into a series of dashboard views suited to her Finance colleagues’ specifications.
Those two initiatives alone may have been enough to alleviate tensions and change perceptions, but Amy’s next move — automating accruals collection and reporting via Brightflag — surely sealed the deal. In terms of a Brightflag customer experience, Ocado’s was about as positive as we could have hoped for.
- Eliminated 12 weeks’ worth of invoicing admin time in first year
- Eliminated 5 weeks’ worth of accruals admin time in first year
What Will Your Story Say?
By this time next year, we could be sharing highlights from your team’s Brightflag customer experience. Book a 20-minute call today and take the first step toward making that vision a reality.