At Legaltech in New York, I interviewed Adam Rubinger, whose role at NightOwl Discovery is Chief Client Officer. What, I asked, does that role cover?
Adam Rubinger said that that his role is to ensure that clients have the best possible experience in their dealings with NightOwl by creating a strategy to deliver a level of service they are used to and demand. His job is to create a culture which tends towards client excellence.
The relationship between providers and lawyers, on the one hand, and their clients, on the other, has changed. Service providers had got into the habit of telling clients what ought to be done, but clients are becoming more sophisticated, not least because of the webinars, conferences etc which they attend, and are becoming more demanding.
Their expectations range from simple things like getting an acknowledgement to their requests through to complex matters like workflow design.
Clients will have their own goals and missions. Sometimes they come up with what they want, and the provider may have to consider the difference between what they want and what they need. It is down to NightOwl, Adam Rubinger said, to work cohesively with both inside and outside counsel. The approach was not as prescriptive as in the past, but involves working towards blending mutually acceptable ideals.
There is a trend at the moment (and a good one) for providers to create senior posts for things which are not merely technical, sales or marketing. We are seeing softer functions like improving diversity and improving the client experience which is Adam Rubinger’s role.
Adam Rubinger just said that Nightowl’s culture is focused on things like that. NightOwl is a Midwest company with a certain set of values, and it works to align those with the interests of the clients.
I asked if there were other planned initiatives. Adam Rubinger said that NightOwl is moving towards a new client experience initiative which covers obvious things like response times, dialogue and communication, but aims also to give clients the comfort that when they go to bed, things are being taken care of and that NightOwl is on their case. That is not easy and involves a significant training element.