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Tech Tales - Women's Edition

Caitlin Garner

Head of Practice Efficiency, Allens

Where were you born? Provide any interesting personal background you feel shapes your story.

I was born in Melbourne, Australia. Both of my parents are medical doctors and I have an older sister who is a practicing artist and teacher.

What did you do before your current career or role?

I have had a range of roles and have changed careers over the last seventeen years. My initial university education was as a Software Engineer and my first role out of university was as an IT Consultant at PwC. After a few years I realised I needed to expand my skills to pursue a career outside of software development and I went back to university to study law. I had a great time back at University and then completed my legal training at an Australian law firm. I then had a stint in government undertaking projects with legal and economic aspects for the Australian economic regulator and Council of Australian Governments. Finally, I made it to Allens, a top tier Australian commercial law firm and have been here for the last five years.

I like being able to translate between the language of technology and law using my experience in both areas.

Describe your current job.

At Allens I implemented the firm's low cost document review offering as well as innovation projects such as our award winning artificial intelligence application for real estate due diligence REDDA which combines Kira with Neota and HighQ. My role now involves facilitating the implementation of innovative ideas across the firm working with lawyers and corporate services staff from a range of departments.

How did you get started doing this?

I am fascinated by how humans and technology interact and get a lot of satisfaction from helping people see technology in a new way that can help solve some of the challenges they and their clients face. I like being able to translate between the language of technology and law using my experience in both areas.

What’s your favourite thing about it?

My favourite part of this work is helping people broaden their perspectives on how a problem can be solved. When the skills of different people can be combined to create a new perspective there exists the possibility of a different and more effective way of working.

Describe a moment you are proudest of in your career.

After developing the REDDA app and integrating the different technologies we are now using the technology on live matters, which is fantastic. To get to this point required a whole range of people across the firm contributing and supporting and then trusting me to make it work, which has been very satisfying and a great privilege.