The Legal 500 has relaunched its ConvertNow service, which was originally launched in 2018 with the aim of streamlining the submission process by enabling law firms to transfer data from a Chambers and Partners submission template into The Legal 500′s submission template. According to David Burgess, Publishing Director for The Legal 500 Series, the tool has been updated to take into account feedback in relation to the previous iteration of the tool, addressing the issues that arose for some firms when using the tool and taking into account revisions made to The Legal 500‘s submission template. Here is what we learnt from The Legal 500‘s announcement concerning ConvertNow 2.0:
ConvertNow 2.0 will transfer the bulk of data from a Chambers submission template into The Legal 500 template
While there are some key pieces of content that is asked for in the Chambers template which The Legal 500 does not ask for (and vice versa), both templates request the same or similar information concerning the team, individuals and work highlights. According to The Legal 500‘s beta testing results, ConvertNow 2.0 will transfer 80-90% of that common information across from the Chambers template. This should result in less BD/marketing resource spent copying and pasting information between templates, meaning more time to fine-tune key messaging.
ConvertNow 2.0 will not transfer all information from a Chambers submission template
The conversion tool will not transfer information regarding ranked or unranked lawyers across to The Legal 500‘s submission template. Both Chambers and The Legal 500 ask for information regarding lawyers that firms consider eligible for an individual ranking. The parameters of how each directory structures those rankings are quite different: Chambers features tiered rankings for lawyers, as well as rankings for up-and-coming individuals and star associates, whereas The Legal 500 breaks down its individual rankings into Leading, Next Generation and Rising Stars categories. This will mean that information regarding leading lawyers will have to be manually transferred to the relevant template.
The submission will require amendments to optimise information for Legal 500 ranking purposes
While the tool will transfer information across, that information will still have to be amended and updated so that it covers The Legal 500‘s research requirements. This means ensuring that the information in the submission is tailored, any gaps in information are identified and addressed, and that the document is formatted to conform to the directory’s terminology. The Legal 500 produces a set of guidelines to assist firms with putting together a submission, which can be found at their website.
ConvertNow 2.0 will transfer information from The Legal 500‘s submission template to a Chambers template
According to The Legal 500, the transfer system should work both ways, enabling firms to move information across from either directories template with minimal hassle.
Things to look out for
Law firms looking to make use of the ConvertNow tool should beware of formatting issues which could create issues with the transfer process. The Legal 500 has identified problems with images or attachments, which will not transfer across and could hamper the conversion process. In addition, embedded hyperlinks will not transfer across. While this is a revised version of the software, you may still encounter issues with the process, so save early and save often.
Who is eligible to use ConvertNow 2.0?
The Legal 500 has made the ConvertNow tool available to law firms that have taken out a commercial profile with the company. For those firms that have a commercial profile, use of the tool will be limited to the jurisdiction for which the law firm has a profile, meaning it won’t be transferrable across all jurisdictions unless the firm’s profile covers all jurisdictions.
My name is Alex Boyes and I am one of the directors at SavageNash Legal Communications. I’m a former editor at The Legal 500 and also worked at a large international law firm. Together, SavageNash Legal Communications has over 30 years’ directories-related experience, from both sides of the directories process. If you’d like more guidance on making submissions to Chambers or The Legal 500 in the next cycle, please do get in touch via our website.