With 2021 coming to a close, Legal Current is looking back at the milestones and key accomplishments from the Legal Professionals business of Thomson Reuters. Today we highlight significant HighQ enhancements from the past year.

“For HighQ, 2021 was the year of people, purpose and growth,” said Kriti Sharma, chief product officer, LegalTech, Thomson Reuters. “We saw law firms and corporate legal teams become people first. The experiences of their colleagues – their convenience, delight and productivity – became front and center. And we responded with over 100 features and enhancements to improve people’s productivity.”

The pandemic forever changed how legal professionals work, and longstanding law firm resistance to adopting cutting-edge technology evaporated quickly during the past 18 months. To build on law firms’ need for new and better ways of working, Thomson Reuters introduced more than 100 customer-driven features in HighQ, a cloud-based productivity solution, in 2021.

HighQ 5.5 strengthened workflow collaboration capabilities, enabling users to better manage larger, more complex projects with varying levels of hierarchy and create task templates, or matter maps, that capture project knowledge to create repeatable project plans, saving significant time and resources, as well as automating time-consuming tasks. HighQ 5.5 also included multiple enhancements to contract lifecycle management.

These enhancements supported legal professionals in their transition to working from home, enabling them to use technology to work more efficiently. Helping people improve productivity, in turn, supported their emphasis on work-life balance and law firms’ focus on employee well-being.

Another key enhancement was the introduction of HighQ Contract Analysis during the first Thomson Reuters Legal SYNERGY conference. The contract review and analysis tool uses machine learning to answer the specific questions legal professionals want to address – in an easy-to-read report.

Artificial Lawyer’s Richard Tromans highlighted the launch: “This is a big step. For years this site has waited and wondered and often asked: when will TR launch their own NLP contract analysis tool, or buy one of the well-known brands in the market? Well, here is the answer. They have made their own.”

Steve Embry also praised it in TechLaw Crossroads: “It’s no secret that contract review is critical and time-consuming, and a source of real pain for legal departments. So tools like HighQ Contract Analysis can make in-house departments much more efficient and cost effective.”

Next came the HighQ 5.6 rollout, which included integrations with Practical Law, 3E and Microsoft Teams® plus more than 50 customer-driven enhancements. Integrating Practical Law allowed users to visualize and customize the Corporate and Litigation Matter Maps within HighQ to better plan and execute legal work. This capability helps legal professionals standardize processes, enabling better project planning and management and, in turn, improving service delivery.

Also, incorporating key client data from 3E into HighQ’s visualization and workflow automation tools allowed users to provide clients with real-time access to their work-in-progress and current spend. This feature makes it easier to monitor activity and stay informed on project status. Finally, the Microsoft Teams integration allowed users to share content from HighQ within Teams private chat or group channels, and upload files from Teams to HighQ. As with the earlier HighQ enhancements, these integrations enabled people to work more efficiently and collaborate with colleagues, whether from home or in the office.

“We are on a mission to empower the people who drive the legal and justice work around the world,” Sharma said. “In 2022, we will continue to build a platform experience where users can drive their business and clients forward, and have information that matters to them, where it matters to them. This experience will be open, connected and smart, and HighQ is at the heart of it – right there with our users, allowing them to focus on what they do best.”

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