Law firm Linklaters has began moving some of its associates into permanent tech roles.

This is in a bid to help its developers and lawyers communicate more effectively.

Associates from a number of the firm’s offices – including Singapore, New York and London – have recently completed six- and 12-month secondments with the firm’s Artificial Intelligence platform Nakhoda, before moving back to their practice groups. But the firm has now said it is now aiming to sign up one or two associates for permanent, non-legal roles within the team.

Linklaters moved its first associate into such a role in the team last April, with the lawyer in question moving from the firm’s London derivatives practice.

In their new roles, the lawyers will act as a bridge between the wider firm and Nakhoda’s developers, who work on bespoke legal tech products for clients and the firm itself.

A key quote to note from Linklaters banking partner Edward Chan said Nakhoda is, “Individuals with a good understanding of legal practice and who are also conversant in tech to quite a high degree are quite scarce in the market,” he said.

For an industry that has been long conservative and traditional, it is commendable to see the efforts that Linklaters has put in. It’s the dawn of a continuing new era and we hope that more law firms engage accordingly.

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