Innovation Manager

London (Central), London (Greater)
Up to £90,000 per annum + benefits
08 Mar 2018
05 Apr 2018
Job Title
Head of Department
Contract Type
Full Time

The Firm

HFW is a sector-focused global law firm.  We have over 500 lawyers working across the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Australia.  We take a progressive approach to our roles in commercial business – thinking creatively and pragmatically to support our clients.

Whether we are solving complex issues within the construction, aviation or shipping industries, or providing advice across insurance, commodities and energy we are specialist lawyers here to add value to our clients.  We think about the commercial solution first, and then underpin our advice with a solid foundation of legal expertise. 

The Role

In order to drive innovation and foster a culture of collaboration, creativity and entrepreneurialism, HFW are looking to hire an Innovation Manager to join their London office.  As a newly-created position, the Innovation Manager will take a global lead in assessing and developing innovative ideas across the firm into legal technology solutions that will deliver internal efficiency programmes or client- facing new product lines or service delivery models.

The Innovation Manager will lead the development, set-up and running of the "Innovation Function/Hub" that will aim to encourage, communicate and help in the delivery of innovation across the global firm.  The Innovation Hub remit will include

  • Devising and managing a system for submission of innovative ideas and methodology for selection of ideas to support;

  • Managing and measuring success, reporting regularly on progress;

  • Managing a designated firmwide innovation budget;

  • Maintaining an audit of all HFW innovations;

  • Considering innovative activities at other firms, professional services, clients and industries to ensure HFW is on track.

The role will sit within the Knowledge Management (KM) function, with first line reporting for the role to the Director of Knowledge.  Wider reporting will be to an Innovation Group made up of the Directors of KM, Marketing & BD and IT and designated Innovation Partners.  The Innovation Group will review and agree innovation ideas and report to the firm's Management Board on a quarterly basis, keeping the Strategy Board informed by copy.

The Innovation Manager will work closely with designated individuals within the IT, KM and Marketing teams and Project Office Manager and, if appropriate, will have access to temporary secondments into the function from existing business services staff or fee earners in relation to specific projects.

Key Responsibilities

The role of the Innovation Manager would be to support the function's aims of encouraging, communicating and delivering successful innovation within the firm.  This would involve:


  • Working with the industry groups/business services groups to identify new products and services and new ways of delivering legal services;

  • Providing support for innovators by connecting them with people who can help bring their innovation to market (specialists within other legal disciplines, representatives from business services: IT, BD, KM, Finance, Risk & Compliance, LPO);

  • Convene and facilitate meetings and workshops for innovation champions (representatives from each industry group and each HFW office) and enthusiastic tech savvy "volunteer" associates/trainees to generate new ideas; manage possible secondments of innovators from industry groups for specific projects.

  • Communicating:

  • Communicate the Innovation Function's progress to the wider firm (intranet,  partner/associate lunches, bulletin updates, video comms);

  • Report to Management, Strategy and Business Service Boards on innovation projects.


  • Manage significant firm projects such as document/contract automation, employment of AI technology in a given practice area or similar;

  • Organise innovation events and campaigns to build a HFW innovation culture;

  • Speak with clients in relation to innovation and learn from them/work with them;

  • Approach external partners for collaboration: academics, entrepreneurs, external funders, legal tech start-ups.

Key Skills & Experience Required

  • Experience of working in a professional services (ideally law) organisation or a legal service provider, with a deep understanding of the dynamics of this industry;

  • A track record of innovative thinking and execution/experience in an R&D function;

  • Experience of managing a team;

  • Experience of legal project management and process improvement would be an advantage;

  • The gravitas to win the respect of the partners and be able to establish a rapport with legal staff at all levels within the firm;

  • The enthusiasm to encourage and share new ideas and approaches and be creative in identifying ways in which we can leverage innovation for the benefit of the business;

  • A robust aptitude for technology innovation.

Additional Information

Kindly note that this job description is not contractual.  It will be reviewed periodically and may be amended or altered to meet the needs of the firm.

HFW aims to ensure equality of opportunity and we are actively working towards improving the diversity of our staff.  All applications will be considered only on merit and the applicant's suitability to meet the requirements of the role.

Due to the volume of applications, only those candidates shortlisted for interview will be contacted.

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