As the second largest privately held company in the United States, Koch Industries is a multinational conglomerate with over 180,000 employees worldwide. Committed to empowering its employees with cutting-edge technology, Koch sought a next-generation technology that would transform the way different business units interact with their legal department. We caught up with Jaeger Glucina, Chief of Staff and MD at Luminance, to find out more about this project and its key achievements so far. Here’s what she had to say…
Can you give us some background on what led Koch to explore the use of legal AI?
Koch Industries is the second largest privately-held business in the US, with interests in a wide range of industrial processes and professional services, from oil refining to cloud computing. In that environment, even their 300-person legal team was a stretched resource, with document processing, contract generation, and query handling sapping time from higher-value legal work like negotiations, assessing potential acquisition targets, and identifying new revenue opportunities.
Any business leader will tell you that contracts form the heart of any business. They define the pivotal relationship a business has with its suppliers, employees and customers. For a global enterprise like Koch, this often means hundreds of contracts being reviewed or negotiated at any one moment. Though these contracts – NDAs and employment agreements to name a couple – are often highly standardised, they must all be reviewed and signed off since even small errors could have major business implications.
After trialling several legal technologies to support the team, Koch chose to adopt Luminance in a large-scale roll-out of legal AI across the enterprise.
What was the implementation like, and how did you approach the change management process?
The fact that Luminance’s AI is deployed instantly via the cloud meant that Koch were up and running within 48 hours. From there, the first key step was to introduce Luminance’s contract generation functionality, which enables legal teams to set up contract templates that non-legal employees can populate through a simple Q&A-style interface. This way, colleagues in HR, Sales or Procurement can generate consistent and compliant documents on demand with only light-touch legal oversight.
Once Koch’s sales and procurement teams were comfortable generating their own agreements with customers and suppliers, we streamlined negotiation processes using Luminance’s AI-powered Traffic Light Analysis functionality. A bit like a supercharged spellcheck, Luminance produces a colour coded analysis according to Koch’s internal standards, highlighting areas of risk or unacceptability in contracts and suggesting alternative wording. In doing so, the AI reduced Koch’s review time by 50%. Even more importantly, it offers rationale for its suggestions, uplifting users’ knowledge and insight across business units. If personnel were to leave the company, this learning is then retained by the AI, centralising institutional knowledge within Luminance.
How has legal AI changed the employee experience in different areas of the business?
For non-legal employees, contracts have obviously become a more self-serve process, but the platform has also made Legal more transparent and accessible to the wider business. That’s because there’s now a clear resource which explains changes and requirements, and also because Luminance’s ticketing system makes interacting with the legal team easier when queries do need to be raised directly.
More broadly, the technology has helped to save time and drive efficiencies across Koch’s business. For example, their Sales team no longer has to wait days for an NDA to be approved and sent off. With Luminance, turnaround time is reduced dramatically, speeding up the commercial process. This is a win-win for the legal team because they no longer have to spend time reviewing 20 versions of near identical NDAs and can instead focus on executing strategic work for the organisation.
Furthermore, Luminance is key for effective supply chain management. By creating a centralised repository with Luminance, GCs have complete oversight across Koch’s contractual obligations, empowering quick decision making and the ability to find answers immediately to urgent legal questions.
Does Koch now have future integration and implementation plans for AI technology?
Even when first assessing legal technology options, a big priority for Koch was ensuring that the solution enabled the whole business to work better, rather than just introducing a discrete tool that only some lawyers interact with. The business has already found applications for Luminance beyond its immediate role in the contract creation, negotiation, and review process, using it to support the analysis of almost any enterprise data.
In particular, teams have been applying the platform’s ability to read and review documents in order to draw deeper, more meaningful insight from ESG surveys. It has also had a big impact in assessing Form I-9 submissions, ensuring compliance with US right-to-work legislation. For a 180,000-person strong workforce, these are resource-intensive tasks where AI makes a real difference.
Ultimately, we see usage growing over time as Koch seeks to facilitate data-driven commercial decision-making right across the business, supporting employees and revenue streams with more holistic information.