I have the luxury of writing about what interests me and what is important rather than about the things which seem urgent or time-sensitive, and Relativity’s late November news about its Australia expansion seemed worth leaving on one side until I could write about it properly.
There is quite a lot to unpack from a fairly short press release (that’s much better, by the way, than long PRs which use many words to say not very much).
Relativity’s approach to Australia has always seemed well-thought-through – they waited until they were ready, with a product and service package which worked well in the US and Europe, and then stepped into the market properly. The curve has been a steep one with, for example, a 40% increase in Relativity certifications (the best measure of user involvement) over the past year.
Once you have a product which people want, the next key thing is to employ the right people, not just to sell it but to support users. Relativity has recruited Georgia Foster as Managing Director APAC, bringing many years of experience in all the disciplines needed to promote both the uptake of Relativity and its use to its customers’ best advantage.
Relativity has also made changes to RelativityOne in response to a preview programme which sought feedback from customers and prospective customers. There is an important point here, traditionally overlooked by US legal technology companies – other jurisdictions are not just like America but with slightly different labels. It is not just that the law and procedure is different; people have developed different ways of working, which may have the same broad ambition, but which deserve better than an attempt to fit them into US habits and patterns. As a product, Relativity is sufficiently flexible to allow variations. More importantly, perhaps, a study of how people work elsewhere may inform development for the better at home.
The last thing covered in Relativity’s Australia press release is nothing to do with selling and supporting product to traditional customers but has a social motive. At Relativity Fest, Relativity launched Justice for Change, with the aim of bringing a positive impact for racial justice. Justice for Change includes 100 terabytes of RelativtyOne to (as the press release puts it) “remove barriers to access technology for organising, collecting and analysing data in matters related to racial injustice.” Any customers or organisations working to promote racial justice can apply for the program.
Between them, these initiatives represent not merely a major investment but an impressive commitment to the Australian market.