Our identity and position is the result of serving and spearheading the legal industry over the last 80 years. At each stage in our history, we evolved and anticipated the changes that laid ahead, remaining true to the essential values of our profession and our firm, standing by every client and making sure we could identify and interpret their needs and offer the best possible advice.
- We contributed to the modernization of the Spanish legal profession by importing the management model on which law firms of English-speaking countries are based and establishing ourselves as the firm of reference for the first foreign firms to set up in Spain.
- We were the first Spanish law firm to have its own offices in New York, Brussels and Shanghai.
- We saw the future potential of Latin America, where we committed to organic growth through the opening of our own offices, staffed by local teams and imbued with the Garrigues culture.
- We broke new ground in the technological transformation of the legal sector: integrated and efficient management, collaboration 4.0, big data strategy, implementation of RPA, artificial intelligence and new innovation and internal entrepreneurship models.
According to the Financial Times, Garrigues is one of the ten European law firms that have changed the rules of the game in the legal services industry in the last decade. These game changers are known for seeking new solutions that are more efficient, more productive and more competitive. In 2020, Garrigues received the award for the “Most Innovative Law Firm of Continental Europe’ in the FT Innovative Lawyers Awards. Forbes magazine also named Garrigues the Most Innovative Law Firm in Spain. And for two years running the firm has received the Expansión Legal Award for the most innovative project.
“We can’t predict the future, but we can prepare ourselves for all possible scenarios. Always true to our values, ethics and quality form the backbone of our firm,” affirms the executive chairman of Garrigues, Fernando Vives.
::afterInnovation in culture and ways of working
In order to ensure excellence in the advice provided to clients in the midst of this digital transformation process, Garrigues is aware that it needs to tackle its own internal challenges. It does so every day and has been recognized as one of the Most Admired Knowledge Enterprises (MAKE) in Europe by British company Teleos and The Know Network in light of its ability to innovate and improve the quality of its products and services through information management. Garrigues also took the European award for Best Provision of Know-How at the Managing Partners Forum Awards. The initiatives implemented that are changing the way Garrigues works notably include:
- Innovation Think Tank
At Garrigues we believe in the value of ideas and in the need to think differently in order to offer greater added value. The Innovation Think Tank is born out of the need to tackle new ways of working in order to meet our client’s needs, to encourage cross-collaboration among professionals, to look at the bigger picture and promote internal initiative. Made up of professionals from different backgrounds and areas, the Innovation Think Tank seeks innovative solutions to predefined challenges, drawing on the collaboration, talent and forward-thinking approach of our people. It is an enriching experience for those involved and a source of inspiration for the firm.
International expansion with own office network
International expansion is Garrigues’ biggest corporate challenge, with Latin America forming the strategic cornerstone. Garrigues, the European law firm with the largest own office network in the region, has broken new ground by committing to the progressive opening of a network of own offices, with local teams that share the same business culture and offer advice on the main areas of business law. Our goal is to ensure our clients experience the same degree of proximity and dedication from all of our lawyers, wherever they may be based.
Advanced knowledge management techniques
Garrigues is at the forefront in terms of the tools that it offers to its professionals and to its clients. For example, Garrigues Collaborate is a modern tool that enables us to create collaborative sites incorporating forums, wikis, blogs, etc., with a view to enabling our lawyers to contribute and share their knowledge irrespective of their category, office or department. This tool is also used to establish work spaces with our clients.
Another example is the Anonymizer, a useful tool which enables our professionals to share private documents of interest while respecting the utmost confidentiality due to our clients. The Anonymizer is a piece of software that automatically identifies sensitive data relating to individuals or legal entities, addresses, amounts and other confidential elements and replaces them with fictional data.
Selection and professional development processes
Garrigues has been recognized in the area of Human Resources for the way in which it approaches selection and professional development processes. It was named the top law firm to work for by Universum and People-Matters, both specialist people management consultants, and the firm regularly features in the ranks of the best companies to work for drawn up by Merco Personas and Actualidad Económica. Garrigues has also been recognized as an “Equal Opportunities Employer” by the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality. These accolades are the result of a clear strategy to attract and retain talent, a field in which the firm innovates year on year, with programs such as the International Training Program, the Mentoring Program, the Garrigues Optimum Plan, etc.
At Garrigues we use the technology best suited to serve our clients: we use tools to streamline processes and enhance efficiency and competitiveness (such as process automation, legal drafting, predictive analytics), with the ultimate aim of enabling us to dedicate more time to value added work; our professionals are encouraged to take a different, more strategic and creative approach; we enhance and deepen client collaboration through technology; and we facilitate access to knowledge by harnessing digital technology.
This has also led us to develop in-house tools. We highlight a few examples here:
- [email protected]: The first tool wholly developed by the firm in conjunction with the IIC, a center associated with Universidad Autónoma. [email protected] is a robot that allows scanned legal texts, videos and audio to be transcribed and indexed quickly and easily, with minimal errors, a functionality that facilitates the work of our lawyers while at the same time improving our client response times. [email protected] includes advanced search options, legal dictionaries, etc., meaning that it has sufficient context to make sense of any text it is given. We are the first law firm in the world to have a robot of these characteristics.
- Garrigues Work: This tool enables, among many other things, the management of the firm and of the teams comprising it to be optimized. It is a real-life example of how data intelligence and technology can work together to respond to two big challenges facing the legal industry: how to improve services to clients and how to optimize the firm’s management. The app, which was developed entirely in-house, uses big data so that the lawyers know which type of service each client receives and with which teams, and which (non-confidential) transactions the firm has advised on.
- [email protected]: This internal initiative is aimed at accelerating the technological transformation of the firm by designing tools, robots and automated processes using RPA technology and artificial intelligence to improve the standards of quality of service and the turnaround times offered to companies.
::afterInnovation in work with clients
Garrigues’ attitude towards innovation facilitates the creation of pioneering legal products which, while conceived to satisfy an individual client, have ended up setting a precedent in the industry:
- Compliance: the firm helped to externally establish a culture of compliance through a program tailor-made for a client with innovative detection and monitoring features.
- Social Responsibility: the firm established a program to help clients gauge the social and environmental risks and risks relating to human rights in the supply chain.
- Growth and business development: the firm has created a multidisciplinary transfer pricing practice, made up of lawyers, economists, analysts and financial advisers, specializing in the valuation of assets, liabilities, etc. Thanks to these professionals, the firm can offer a service that aligns the economic and business strategies with the corresponding tax and legal implications.
- Electronic invoicing for clients and suppliers, and the development of internal applications, such as the platform created for mobile devices that enables professionals to check for potential conflicts of interest in real time, anytime, anywhere, with a view to expediting their work.
::afterInnovation in the entrepreneurial ecosystem
Garrigues has advised on the development of the digital economy from its early stages and is the leading provider of advice in Spain to companies, projects and transactions in this major sector, offering support to both major global operators and emerging companies and their investors. Garrigues is also present in the main innovation and enterprise forums, such as South Summit, the summit for entrepreneurs in Southern Europe.
In this vein, Garrigues has launched, together with Spain StartUp (the organizer of South Summit), the first Legaltech Startup Competition, a competition to support research projects which focus on the development of new technologies for use in the field of law. In launching this initiative, Garrigues seeks to promote university research, strengthen the entrepreneurial ecosystem and foster entrepreneurship in projects arising from the legal tech world.
::afterInnovation in Communication and Marketing
Garrigues has joined the trend set by the most cutting-edge multinationals in transforming their corporate websites into information portals with a view to delivering greater added value to clients and to the rest of their stakeholders, so that they can use them as a work tool full of relevant information and available on any device. Internally, Garrigues’ website —available in both Spanish and English, with microsites containing Portuguese, Polish and Chinese content— eliminates geographical barriers and fosters unity, mutual knowledge and teamwork among the more than 2000 professionals of 25 different nationalities that work out of the firm’s 31 offices.