ACC offers this Legal Operations Maturity Model as a reference tool. Use it to benchmark maturity in any given area(s), bearing in mind that priorities and aspirational targets will vary based on department size, staffing and budgets. We have partnered with leading legal service providers to produce the Foundational Toolkit to advance in each of the 14 functions. Members can link to the tools and on-demand webcasts below.

Maturity Model Stages


  • Innovation strategy reactive and short-term
  • No defined or committed resources dedicated to innovation within legal operations
  • Sporadic processes with limited workflow, integration, and governance
  • Innovation projects siloed with limited engagement by colleagues
  • Self-directed education on enabling technologies
  • General disdain and skepticism of trying new solutions
  • Limited technology and tools.


  • Innovation strategy aligned to corporate objectives
  • Part time resources with sponsorship
  • Defined processes with limited adoption and some governance
  • Collaborative environment with engagement by colleagues
  • Limited education on enabling technologies and application
  • Pockets of innovative behavior throughout culture
  • Limited pipeline of innovations to act upon; organization intends to use crowdsourcing to collect new innovations but lacks follow-through
  • Variety of technologies and methods
  • Ad hoc measurement and metrics to measure innovation project performance


  • Innovation strategy drives competitive advantage and provides opportunity to monetize innovations
  • Dedicated senior roles and teams for innovation management with executive leader sponsorship
  • Dedicated innovation system, processes, team or task force
  • Repeatable innovation processes used in all areas across law with governance model
  • Widespread experimental culture valued by leaders
  • Internal and external co-creation
  • Formal education about innovation in the marketplace and change management program
  • “Fail-fast” culture where feedback enables teams to adapt, respond, and improve quickly
  • Robust innovation pipeline; crowdsourcing initiatives fully integrated into the innovation management model and subject to continuous improvement
  • Multiple tools, technologies, methods, and approaches
  • Strategic metrics program measuring performance and value; metrics shared across Legal function.

Foundational Tools

Maturity Model Innovation Management Sample Innovation Process (Liberty Mutual)
A centralized group focused on discovering, evaluating and testing ideas gains efficiency and focus

Maturity Model Innovation Management Sample Innovation Management System (Bristol-Myers Squibb)
Strategically leverage innovation to drive efficiency and speed into the advice and counseling provided to the Company


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