Say hello to LexisNexis employees from around the globe, who all have one bold thing in common: they can’t stop innovating
Right at this moment, someone at LexisNexis Legal & Professional is innovating. Innovation at the company is as diverse as its 10,000 people serving customers in law firms, corporations, governments and academic institutions in more than 130 countries.
From Sales and Marketing to User Experience, Engineering and Operations, LexisNexis employees worldwide are inspired by delighting customers, advancing the rule of law, leading the industry forward, and making the company as efficient and productive as possible.
Meet some LexisNexis innovators who wake up in the morning and switch off the lights at night…innovating.
Craig Wymer uses technology models from many industries to find answers to customer problems
“I enjoy hearing about technology and what it can do – it sparks innovation and creativity in my mind before I even walk into my office to start the day.”
Craig Wymer - Durban, South Africa
Sparked by Innovation
Many people use their morning commute to drink their coffee or catch up on their local radio program. Craig Wymer, an artificial intelligence team lead for LexisNexis, tunes into his favorite podcasts discussing emerging technologies, issues and trends.
“I enjoy hearing about what technology can do. It sparks innovation and creativity in my mind before I even walk into my office to start the day,” Wymer says. “I’ve gained some huge insights just by hearing what they’re doing with technology in other industries.”
Wymer enjoys looking at big-picture strategy, as well as zoning in on the finer details – both of which are critical, he says, as he serves to be the “transition layer” between those in technology and law.
“I understand the technology behind our products and am able to translate it to people who just don’t speak that language,” Wymer explains.
This aptitude is critical as Wymer and his team work to roll out a pioneering personal injury visualization platform that will tie in with Lexis Analytics and allow legal teams to use keyword searches and filters to quickly identify the judgments relevant to them, along with up-to-date monetary judgment values.
“Traditionally this would be done via a print publication, which is very time consuming to navigate and is only updated when a new version is released,” he says. “We tested this personal injury visualization with customers and found that a two-hour activity to find content can now be cut down to a few minutes.”
Niharika Syamala helps LexisNexis think outside the cloud
“When you have managers getting excited for you just by listening to your ideas, and when you trust that they really believe in you, it’s a great thing.”
Niharika Syamala - Raleigh, North Carolina
Savings Up By Powering Down
Before going to bed at night or heading to work for the day, most people turn off lights and electronics to save money – but no one regularly powers down the cloud. That’s the observation that got software engineer Niharika Syamala thinking. She works on LexisNexis’ cloud operations team.
“We get billed by the second when we use the cloud. But if we only use the cloud about 60 percent of the time, why are we paying for it to run twenty-four-seven?” Syamala asks.
In addition to her work providing insights and cost management for various cloud-based business units, Syamala and her teammate Chris Kennedy created a cloud control app that serves as a programmable switch that automatically adjusts the amount of capacity an employee needs at different times of day, and scales down during non-business hours and holidays.
To date, two LexisNexis cloud accounts have implemented the tool, resulting in savings of $500,000 over a nine-month period. The company plans to expand the initiative to other LexisNexis units in the coming months.
And this won’t be the last big idea to come from Syamala. She has a “punch list” of projects she wants to work on to help LexisNexis continue to transform the legal industry.
“I’m a naturally curious person,” Syamala laughs. “I also really enjoy and care about the work I do here. My team has always been so supportive of me. When you have managers getting excited for you just by listening to your ideas, and when you trust that they really believe in you, it’s a great thing.”
Jeanette Fuccella anticipates user needs… and delivers
“I listen to our users and deeply feel their pains and anxieties, and then I work to solve it.”
Jeanette Fuccella - Raleigh, North Carolina
The Customer’s Champion
As a user experience (UX) researcher, Jeanette Fuccella spends her days finding solutions to questions that her customers haven’t even formulated yet.
“We’re working with cutting-edge technologies like machine learning and AI, so trying to research something before it fully exists is challenging,” Fuccella says. From discovery research for new products to usability testing of existing ones, Fuccella uses a combination of qualitative and quantitative research methods to discover how users will interact with LexisNexis products.
Recently, Fuccella was tasked with understanding user interactions with a voice-assistant technology prototype. She discovered dScout, a technology that allows for remote research into customer behavior, which enabled her team to hear and see how students used Lexis Advance in their homes. Her research provided insights for the project team that allowed them to pivot from the original prototype to one that better aligned with user needs.
As LexisNexis develops trailblazing technologies, anticipating client needs and objections becomes critical for product adoption. Lawyers must trust that new technology can provide reliable legal insights. “As we integrate machine learning and AI, the goal is for our users to relinquish some of their control to us – and they need to trust we’re doing at least as good a job as they would have done,” Fuccella explains. “We spend a lot of time researching how to provide a helpful experience to users that interacts in a way that is in line with their expectations and needs, and even provides some delight.”
Fuccella sees herself as an advocate for the customer. She constantly communicates with users – through focus groups, diary studies, innovation games and workshops – listening for opportunities to meet customer needs. “I listen to our users and deeply feel their pains and anxieties, and then I work to solve it. LexisNexis provides us with a real culture of experimentation where I know it’s okay to fail – as long as I’m failing forward.”
Kingsley Daniels believes data is key to explosive sales growth
“We need to ‘get’ our customers and immerse ourselves in their world to understand their reality.”
Kingsley Daniels - London, United Kingdom
Driven By Data
With unprecedented access to data and analytics, LexisNexis sales teams are in a unique position to serve customers and effectively engage new business prospects.
For Kingsley Daniels, who heads up new business sales in the UK, this means that analyzing and understanding the market and customers’ core drivers are key to a successful new business motion.
“Our market is demanding more from us now than ever before. We need to ‘get’ our customers and immerse ourselves in their world to understand their reality. And, in so doing, derive insight that helps them understand the real value we can deliver,” Daniels says.
Combining data-driven insights with a positive customer experience sets LexisNexis apart from competitors. Professionalism is often revealed in small things like delivering against commitments and promises, focusing on clarity and brevity in communications, and educating and informing customers across a wide range of topics. This all helps strengthen the impression the company leaves in the minds of customers and prospects.
For Daniels, data is also central to improving success rates by identifying and trending strength and development areas within his team. The aim is to constantly improve the data and the development of the team. “What has had a major impact on our ability to deliver positive results is identifying and capitalizing on the positive-repeatable-behaviors in our sales teams. These are measured and monitored via a system of balanced scorecards driven by our CRM data. This has the impact of driving both CRM compliance and providing early warning of any gaps in the leading indicators of successful performance.”
Nina Dimitrova is designing all new ways for LexisNexis to operate
“I look at our platform’s infrastructure and think of how our work could be easier by making our clients’ lives easier as well.”
Antoaneta Nina Dimitrova - Canberra, Australia
An Eye for Efficiency
For Antoaneta Nina Dimitrova, product and content manager for LexisNexis Capital Monitor, it’s easy to spot opportunities for innovation – her customers tell her.
“Because of the nature of the services and products we offer to our subscribers, I’m constantly in touch with our customers,” Dimitrova says. “They may have questions about a regulatory change that was just announced or want to clarify a report that we sent out, so I use those opportunities when I’m already on the phone to ask additional questions to see what else we can help with or what we can be doing better.”
Listening to subscriber feedback helped Dimitrova develop an idea for her Lean Six Sigma green belt certification. While most green belt certifications focus on process improvement, Dimitrova looked to design an entirely new process. Her goal? To shore up the longevity of Capital Monitor. She has also proposed operational efficiencies, improvements to the user experience, as well as new content and product synergies within the LexisNexis portfolio.
“I look at our platform’s infrastructure and think of how our work could be easier by making our clients’ lives easier as well,” Dimitrova says. It’s how she developed the idea to tackle an outdated instant alert application used to notify customers of new information.
By using value stream mapping, visual aids and other tools, she was able to reduce the output turnaround time by 45 percent – which significantly freed up team members’ capacity for more engaging work, resulting in both hard and soft savings for the company.
“I’ve been lucky to have managers who allow me to express the struggles we and our customers face, and then encourage me to chip away at solving problems,” Dimitrova says.
James McLean engages next generation customers in law school
“I use social media to connect with our law students and show them, through humor and pop culture references, that we understand what they’re going through, and LexisNexis can help make their lives easier.”
James McLean - Dayton, Ohio
Making a Social Connection
While some law students use social media accounts like Facebook and Twitter as distractions from schoolwork, assistant marketing manager James McLean believes LexisNexis can tap into those tools to connect with future customers.
“If we can authentically communicate with law students as a company, we can better support them as users as they enter the professional legal field,” McLean explains.
When McLean took over managing the LexisNexis law school social media accounts, follower engagement was stagnant. He noticed posts that only referenced LexisNexis content did not receive much attention and thought a little humor could be used to create more engagement.
“We had one Facebook post that simply advertised Context on Lexis Advance as a tool that was available to help them – and it only received four positive reactions,” McLean says. “So, I tried promoting it again a couple weeks later, but this time with some humor.”
McLean posted a meme that said, “A good lawyer knows the law… a great lawyer knows the judge,” and highlighted how Context helps lawyers craft persuasive, judge-specific arguments. The same information was promoted, but McLean shifted the way it was presented. This time, the post received 146 positive reactions and more than 400 clicks into the product. Since McLean has taken over the law school social media accounts, engagement has increased nearly 75 percent.
“I use social media to connect with our law students and show them, through humor and pop culture references, that we understand what they’re going through, and LexisNexis can help make their lives easier,” McLean says.