Should a Director of Legal Operations Be Your Next Hire?

February 1, 2022
February 1, 2022
Gary Sangha | Founder & CEO

The Director of Legal Operations has become an invaluable position in today’s large and medium-sized corporate legal departments. In response to the rapid pace of advances in legal technology over the past five years, the Director of Legal Operations recommends and implements innovations that increase legal department efficiency, productivity, and accuracy. Below, we’ll explore the position in more detail to discover specific opportunities it can bring to your legal department. 

 Attorney shakes hands with newly hired Director of Legal Operations

What Does a Director of Legal Operations Do?

Usually reporting directly to the General Counsel, the Director of Legal Operations is the highest-ranking member of the legal operations team, overseeing legal operations managers, specialists, and analysts. The director manages business strategy and operational processes for the legal department and makes decisions relating to process improvements, technology adoption, operational changes, and budget allocation. Excellent candidates for this role are strategic-minded and possess strong communication and problem-solving skills.

Director of Legal Operations’ Job Duties

A Director of Legal Operations’ duties may include:

  • Designing a strategy for legal department efficiency and operational excellence.
  • Forming collaborative partnerships with finance, IT, and procurement departments.
  • Setting and overseeing performance goals and initiatives to reach improvement targets.
  • Researching and allocating budget funding for legal technology software and tools.
  • Creating internal process improvements that streamline workflow efficiency.
  • Participating in corporate legal industry roundtables and benchmarking studies.

The Director of Legal Operations’ Career Path

Most Director of Legal Operations hires (71%) possess a law degree. Often, these directors sensed a growing need in the legal field and transformed their skill sets to match their job demands. As the position becomes increasingly sought-after, some candidates are instead arriving with a Masters in Business Administration or other special focuses in business and legal studies. 

Directors of Legal Operations are usually employed by Fortune 500 companies and work for an average of nearly seven years as attorneys, senior legal advisors, or legal policy managers before transitioning to this senior leadership role.

Director of Legal Operations Salary

The national average salary for a Director of Legal Operations is $133,858, according to Glassdoor. However, the role can attract salaries up to $300,000, depending on the industry, organization, and the candidate’s experience.

What Can a Legal Operations Program Achieve?

Companies that want to compete at a high level in today’s market must bolster their legal departments. Contract law, in particular, can influence the entire organization’s success trajectory, as business agreements are fundamental to defining core relationships and mitigating risk. Most Directors of Legal Operations (74%) employ a contract management solution when establishing a more efficient legal operations department.

What Are the Key Functions of a Legal Operations Program

The legal operations department focuses on:

  • Collecting business intelligence to use in strategic decision-making.
  • Creating budgets, forecasting, and managing legal expenditures.
  • Developing clear policies to lower corporate risk and educating employees.
  • Allocating resources to enhance speed, accuracy, quality, and efficiency.
  • Managing projects, workflows, tasks, and programs.
  • Creating team goals that align with corporate priorities. 
  • Automating repetitive, time-consuming tasks using the latest technology.
  • Training new hires, maintaining a talent pipeline, and facilitating advancement.

With a Director of Legal Operations handling legal tech innovations, companies can strengthen key workflows like the contract approval process.

Who Needs a Legal Operations Program?

The 2018 Chief Legal Officer Survey found that 73% of organizations who added a legal operations professional said it was the “biggest factor in optimizing the efficiency of their legal departments.” A legal operations program can oversee legal spend and enable greater financial discipline to free up resources while also presenting the most innovative solutions for problems the legal department faces.

Ask Your Next Director of Legal Operations About Legal Tech

LexCheck works with Directors of Legal Operations who want to learn more about the latest technology aiding contract efficiency. A contract review solution provides one of the fastest ways to transform legal departments and save valuable time while ensuring contracts adhere to company standards. 

LexCheck’s award-winning platform employs artificial intelligence (AI) and Natural Language Processing (NLP) to automatically review and redline agreements while providing context-based suggestions for revision. Through automating routine contract review and negotiation, an AI-powered contract platform transforms work that would traditionally require days to complete into a simple process that takes less than five minutes.

LexCheck’s AI-powered contract platform leverages advanced technologies to accelerate contract review, negotiation, and approval. Contact us at to learn how LexCheck can be the perfect partner for your Director of Legal Operations. Or, request a demo to experience the technology first-hand.

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