A university is like a small town and the legal work that comes to the team is wonderful and varied and can also come out of left field. Te Herenga Waka Victoria University of Wellington (VUW)'s legal team is close-knit and the right fit is very important
Due to a mixture of factors, including clever team members being seconded to other university projects, the legal team needed a rebuild. At the same time, the team experienced growing demand within the university for legal advice and had a real need for additional resources.
That's where Juno came in. Juno has been an ideal arrangement for VUW’s legal team as it provided experienced lawyers on a short-term basis who can jump straight in and require little guidance. The model allowed for the ability to flex up and down as the need demands and, at times, several Juno Lawyers have been on engagements there. Juno lawyers, such as Margot Lyons, have also returned to help the team on multiple occasions which has been ideal for getting to know the University’s internal clients and the unique environment the University presents.
"You can’t really go wrong. You get the chance to get some temporary resource from somebody who really knows what they’re doing AND you get a person who can give you a non-judgemental and helpful overview of your team. So for me, it was an absolute no-brainer." - Simon Johnson
The Victoria University of Wellington legal team needs to be able to advise on the full spectrum of legal issues from corporate governance, IP, student discipline, joint ventures, property acquisitions and disposals, construction, leasing, procurement, fundraising and dispute resolution. VUW have really appreciated being able to bring in senior lawyers from Juno with skillsets that the team may not have. Having Juno lawyers on board has also meant the University hasn’t had to outsource as much work to external legal advisors which has been better in terms of relationship continuity and economy.
“We were an early adopter of working remotely because when Marissa was put forward as an option for working remotely from Chile [pre-covid] and I thought, "Hmm that's not ideal, but let's see if we can make it work."
It didn't take long for me to realise the value and that remote working was a perfectly viable way to work. We deliberately didn't tell anyone and it took our internal clients virtually the entire length of Marissa’s engagement to realise that she was working remotely. It was raised with me by a staff member as a health and safety concern as Marissa was sending emails at 3am. He suggested that I might want to look into the reasons for that.
And I laughed and said, “Oh, she's working remotely from Chile.” Their mouth just dropped."
Simon Johnson, former GC, current COO
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