Manzama’s first quarter of 2018 saw incredible growth as ten new professional service firms gained access to our leading market intelligence and current awareness services. To support this growth and ensure that every client has success with our knowledge tools, Manzama has hired Andy Mills to the United Kingdom client success team. We sat down with Andy to see what makes him tick and get a deeper appreciation regarding what he brings to the table to support Manzama clients.
Tell us a bit about your background, Andy?
I grew up in South London, before moving to Leeds to study History at University. I remember writing to a few museums for jobs just after I graduated, not really knowing how to use the research and writing skills I learned in my degree, before taking an editorial role, and eventually joining Thomson Reuters as a legal editor in 2008. I stayed with Thomson Reuters for just under ten years, moving around within the UK organisation, and this is where I really developed my interest in legal research and current awareness. Over time I progressed to managing a department writing outsourced and bespoke current awareness, before my final role as Product Specialist managing their legal current awareness product.
What will you be doing at Manzama?
I’ve joined Manzama at a really exciting time. As Client Success Manager, I sit within our Client Services team, helping all our law firm clients around the world really get the best out of this innovative technology. Having worked with UK and US legal and professional service firms for several years, I’ve seen the growing focus on technology and innovation, particularly, from my point of view, within Knowledge Management and business development. So I’ll be helping our clients use all our Manzama products to overcome some of those traditional challenges and move their current awareness, KM and business development projects forward. I’ll also be managing our UK legal content, ensuring that our UK clients can see everything they need to see, relevant to their jurisdiction, practice area and other areas of interest.
What do you consider the biggest challenges in the current awareness and market intelligence space?
Traditionally, the biggest challenge was finding the right content in order to stay up to date. In this day and age, that challenge has only got tougher, with so much information readily available, and key content hidden among fake news and opinion. Especially when it comes to industry and company news. And it’s that double-edged challenge of how do you see everything related to your area of expertise or clients, whilst keeping your information relevant and on point: information overload vs relevance. And that’s what Manzama aims to solve, firstly with the sources in our system, which are vetted and indexed; the data science that keeps all results relevant; the search capability that makes all the current awareness and market intelligence personalised; and even the ability to target your own subscriptions and key sources. It gives you the ability to overcome these challenges of information overload, and still focus on the content that you and your lawyers and business professionals need.
What do you see as the most important emerging trends in this space?
The whole AI sphere around big data, machine learning, and data science must be the biggest emerging trend in the legal technology industry. And some of the ways that professional service firms and legal technology companies are using data science to improve their services and operate more efficiently are fascinating. At Manzama, it’s brilliant for me to see how we’re using data science ourselves, particularly in our new Manzama Insights platform. And it’s a great example of how this sort of technology is helping law firms and other companies, by revolutionising how they keep up to date on their key clients, prospects and linking “traditional” current awareness with market and company intelligence in ever-more innovative ways. Our data science team are helping companies become more proactive with intelligence and at the same time, helping them know more but read less.
What attracted you to working at Manzama?
I’ve been aware of Manzama for several years, and the excellent reputation it has in the global legal technology market. The UK business, in particular, is growing really quickly, and when the opportunity came up to join at such an important time for the company, and with such a wide-reaching and exciting role, I couldn’t be happier. Even in the short time I’ve been here, the technology has evolved and is adapting to new questions and challenges, and being a part of such a dynamic young company, and such an innovative set of products is something I’m really excited about.
Where do you see Manzama in five years’ time?
Since Manzama was founded in 2010, the company has seen incredible success and continues to grow. More than 200 legal and professional service firms around the world use Manzama and we are present in so many different countries. Our new Manzama Insights platform makes us even more relevant for legal and professional service firms of different shapes and sizes, and even for more organisations outside of legal. We’re also working with more and more innovative partners like OnePlace, Dun & Bradstreet and Concep. These partnerships and the integrations they provide make Manzama so much more powerful and tailorable for our clients. I mentioned AI and data science earlier, which Manzama is investing heavily in too, making us ready to help our clients overcome new challenges.
Tell us something few people know about Andy Mills?
I’ve always loved travelling and discovering different foods and cultures, and I’ve been to a few places off the beaten track. I’ve visited most countries in Eastern Europe – including Bosnia, Serbia and Bulgaria – and have also travelled across Russia, Siberia, Mongolia and China.
I’ve got a young daughter who loves the outdoors as well, so we try to spend as much time in the countryside as possible.