The CLOC 12 Core Competencies

The 12 core competencies represent areas of focus that every legal operations department must manage to have a disciplined, efficient, and effective legal operations function. They are also part of a bigger picture: determining legal operations department maturity. The 12 competencies serve as a benchmark to compare a legal operations department’s growth to others in the industry and break down legal operations departments into foundational, advanced and mature in order to improve and grow systemically.

What is Legal Operations

CLOC Core Competency Legal Operations Reference Model

© 2019 Corporate Legal Operations Consortium, Inc.

Mature Level

Litigation Support & IP Managemnet

Knowledge Management

Information Govermence & Record Management

Strategic Planning

Foundation Level

Financial Management

Vendor Management

Cross-Functional Alignment

Technology & Process Support

Advanced Level

Service Delivery & Alternative Support Models

Organizational Design, Support & Management


Data Analytics

CLOC created the 12 core competencies in order to define legal operations.

• The core competencies are used as the reference model for achieving operational excellence by in-house legal teams.

• Legal operations professionals, working with their GCs and legal leadership teams, use the core competencies to develop strategic and tactical plans to create service delivery models (in-house, law firm, LSO, and tech solutions) to deliver the right quality of legal support at the right cost by executing against those competencies.

• Each core competency is comprised of several sub-core competencies.

12 core competencies.

Competency Description
Financial Management Manage the departmental budget. Track accruals and forecasting. Work with Finance to identify spending trends, potential cost savings and efficiency opportunities.
Vendor Management Create a vendor management program to insure quality outside counsel support at the right rates and under optimal fee arrangements. Hold regular business reviews. Negotiate fee agreements. Drive governance of billing guidelines.
Cross-Functional Alignment Create and drive relationships with other key company functions, such as HR, IT, Finance and Workplace Resources. Represent the Legal organization at CLOC.
Technology & Process Support Create a long-term technology roadmap including tools such as e-billing/matter management, contract management, content management, IP management, business process management, e-signature, board management, compliance management, legal hold, subsidiary management, etc.
Service Delivery & Alternative Support Models Drive departmental efficiency by leveraging the right resources for the right matters, including using managed services, LPOs, and other service providers and technology as appropriate.
Organizational Design, Support & Management Deliver improved GC Staff and overall team performance by globalizing the team and creating a culture of growth, development, collaboration and accountability.
Communications Work collaboratively across the legal ecosystem to create consistent global processes, from on boarding to complex project management support. Publish regular departmental communications, plan and execute all-hands.
Data Analytics Collect and analyze relevant data from department tools and industry sources, define objectives to provide metrics and dashboards, that drive efficiencies and optimize spend, etc.
Litigation Support & IP Management Support e-discovery, legal hold, document review.
Knowledge Management Enable efficiencies by creating seamless access to legal & department institutional knowledge through the organization and centralization of key templates, policies, processes, memos, and other learnings.
Information Governance & Records Management Create a records management program including a record retention schedule, policies and processes. Support Intellectual Property Matters.
Strategic Planning Create a long-term strategy, aligning yearly goals and corresponding metrics.