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Jack Dilweg

What's your job about?

Law In Order helps legal teams achieve winning outcomes through providing global litigation support. I work in the eCourts (also known as eTrials) division which is responsible for assisting clients prepare for and present their case at hearing. On an average day we could be preparing electronic trial bundles, managing exhibits, presenting documents in court, managing real-time transcription, facilitating remote witness testimony and even webcasting proceedings.

Our team comes from a variety of backgrounds including project management, law, IT and AV experts. Our clients include global and local law firms, counsel and judicial officers, Royal Commissions and government agencies.

As lead consultant, my responsibility is to advise clients about electronic trials and tailor an eTrial solution to their particular matter. A certain amount of leadership is also needed. I must ensure the team is being utilised effectively across our various projects. This includes cross-training staff (myself included) wherever possible. It’s essential that I keep abreast of the latest developments in technology and court procedure so that we remain competitive.

Over the life of a project I would meet with parties to discuss their matter and demonstrate our capabilities. Prior to the hearing, I then devise a project plan and design and build an electronic court book, train the lawyers and set up the hearing room. During the hearing, we then provide technical support. Post-hearing, we debrief with the client.

What's your background?

I spent most of my high school and university years in Armidale NSW. In 2014, I moved to Sydney looking for work while continuing my study by correspondence.

Shortly after arriving in Sydney I took an entry level job with Law In Order as a support clerk. It was pleasant work but it could also be very repetitive; each night I would be scanning documents, collating briefs, fixing paper jams and the like. In 2015, I was promoted to a role doing court operator work for Law In Order, helping barristers by bringing documents up on screen while they argued their case. This was my first experience of an “eTrial” and it was great. Among other things, the court operator speeds up the hearing by reducing the time taken up going between documents. They make trials faster and more efficient.

In late 2016, my wife enrolled in medicine at Notre Dame in Fremantle. Thankfully, the leadership at Law In Order had their eye on expanding in the west and were very supportive of my relocation to the Perth office. Come new year, my wife and I packed all of our possessions into the back of what was, by then, a fairly decrepit Holden Commodore and set out across the Nullarbor. The car was a wreck by the end of it, but the journey itself was incredible and is one which I would highly recommend.

Could someone with a different background do your job?

Certainly.  On the one hand, being formally educated in law no doubt has helped by familiarising me with the litigation process and legal terminology However, provided the person is good with people, has a strong work ethic and is not adverse to disruptive technologies, they could be right for this job. It is perhaps more important for the person to have these qualities, since they cannot easily be taught but remain integral to success in what is a fast moving and demanding role.

What's the coolest thing about your job?

My favourite aspect of the job is the close proximity in which you find yourself with the justice system and its actors, many of whom are brilliant orators. Very few people have the opportunity to consult with and watch some of the nation’s greatest lawyers and barristers in action in the courts, sometimes in historic cases. We have the opportunity to be very close to the action in real time. It’s a rare privilege.

What are the limitations of your job?

Being a support provider, we are often left out of important case developments until very late in the piece. What is required of us can change dramatically and with little notice Project planning is a constant struggle, with some cases settling at the last minute and others coming up seemingly out of thin air. On a separate note, though we continually strive to automate our processes much of the work remains fairly basic and time consuming, such as fixing poorly scanned pages and reseting people’s passwords.

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  • Make the most of life on campus. Transitioning from on-campus to off-campus study, I found it  isolating. Although I was still  progressing towards a qualification, the experience of university was no longer there.
  • Take feedback seriously. For a long time I couldn’t stand receiving negative feedback. I would foolishly dismiss their feedback as subjective matters of taste. I would have learned a great deal more with a white belt mentality.
  • Take at least one elective unit that doesn’t take your fancy. It might exceed your expectations. Even if it doesn’t, you have shown strength by grinding through something  dull and difficult.