The Unsung Heroes of Legal AI

Uwais Iqbal2023-02-02

There are a variety of skills needed to successfully deliver a Legal AI project. The ODI Skills Framework provides a way to structure our thinking about the different skills and roles needed and how they come together to work together.


It's a bird!

It's a plane!

No, it's a Data Translator!

Data Translators are the real unsung supermen and superwomen when it comes to data and Legal AI. What's a Data Translator? Let's find out.

The Data Skills Framework

The Data Skills Framework created by the Open Data Institute provides a holistic overview of data within an organisation. It breaks down the complex landscape of data skills into the different types of skills required by different people in an organisation.

It illustrates how technical data skills must be balanced with skills that enable data innovation. In other words, hiring a Data Scientist won't magically make your data woes disappear. They are just a small part of the puzzle.

Data Strategists, Data Practitioners and Data Translators

The skills matrix divides broadly into two distinct categories. Data Strategists on the left-hand side of the matrix and Data Practitioners on the right-hand side of the matrix.

Data Practitioners actually work with the data and are technically proficient. They do things like develop models and perform analysis on the data. Data Scientists and Data Engineers are examples of Data Practitioners.

Data Strategists facilitate work for the Data Practitioners. They take care of issues around data privacy, governance and management. Data Strategists are people like the Chief Data Officer or the Data Privacy Officer.

There is an obvious gap between Data Practitioners and Data Strategists. This is where the Data Translator fits in. They are able to bridge the gap between the technical world of Data Practitioners and the governance world of Data Strategists.

Data Translators

Data Translators are poly-data-gots. They have to be able to communicate in business and governance speak as well as technical speak. They enable the Data Strategists and Data Practitioners to come together and be effective in their own domains.

Most organisations have both Data Strategists and Data Practitioners in plenty but lack Data Translators. The unspoken expectation of Data Strategists is that Data Practitioners will stretch across and come to them. While the unspoken expectation of Data Practitioners is that Data Strategists will stretch across and come to them.

What do Data Translators Bring to the Table?

The skillset of a Data Translator is a whole different set of skills that Data Practitioners or Data Strategists might not be comfortable with. Without Data Translators, data initiatives will run into endless blockers and there will be misalignment and frustrations between the Data Strategists and Data Practitioners.

The skills of a Data Translator can always be learnt and the Data Skills Framework helps capture who needs what skills in an organisation to work effectively with data. The Data Translator's skillset is highlighted in the central box on the matrix. It includes leading change and developing strategy within an organisation.

Data Skills in Legal AI

Most law firms and legal teams already have Data Strategists in place. People who are organising the data, thinking about issues around privacy and making sure that everything is in line with regulation.

The difficulty is that law firms and legal teams are interested in developing Legal AI solutions but they lack Data Translators who can communicate the technical speak into language they can understand as well as Data Practitioners who can actually go out and build what they need.

Here at simplexico, we bring together the skills of the Data Translators and Data Practitioners. With our extensive practical experience of working in the legal domain we know to translate the technical speak into language you can understand. With our deep technical expertise in all things data and Legal AI related we can build a dedicated Legal AI solution for your precise needs.