Allens’ AI ChatGPT
Australian law firm Allens took the unconventional route of creating its own iteration of ChatGPT due to reservations about the original version’s trustworthiness and a desire to safeguard its proprietary expertise.
Lisa Kozaris, (right) Chief of Innovation and Legal Solutions at the firm, explained that the public incarnation of this transformative AI tool presented more challenges than benefits.
It also reflects the ongoing surge in news about new, AI tools helping lawyers perform work more efficiently and profitably.
She emphasized the need for their team members to directly engage, experiment, and comprehend its potential limitations. However, concerns arose regarding the enterprise-level security standards demanded by both Allens and its clients.
Kozaris pointed out the unease felt about lawyers inserting prompts into ChatGPT or uploading documents, as there was no assurance that these prompts wouldn’t be accessed by OpenAI or used for broader model training.
Now that their internally developed “Airlie” is operational, Kozaris highlighted the newfound flexibility.
“Our objective was to enable them to get hands-on, to dive right in and directly interact with it. Unless you’re genuinely experimenting with legal documents, personal legal data, and actual contracts in meaningful tasks, it’s extremely challenging to gauge the potential and discern the limitations.”
In contrast to the prevailing trend of law firms experimenting with OpenAI, Allens stands out as the first local firm to fashion its custom version. Kozaris mentioned that although global firm Dentons has undertaken a similar endeavor, Allens holds the distinction of being Australia’s pioneer in this endeavor.
The advent of Airlie is projected to empower clients in handling substantial portions of their legal tasks, which could expedite the transition from billable-hour models to value-based pricing structures.
“This innovation will enable us to reshape how we present and deliver our services. With time, clients might seek alternative methods to avail our offerings,” Kozaris predicted.
She also pointed out that the adoption of these novel services might not align with the traditional hourly billing approach, particularly in the context of commoditized services where value-based pricing is poised to become the norm.
Choosing the name “Airlie” was deliberate and symbolic. Beyond its connection to AI, Airlie Smith was the pioneer female lawyer to join one of the founding firms, adding historical significance to this technological advancement.