Posse Herrera Ruiz, Bogotá
Legal manager, BHP Minerals Americas, Santiago
Regional senior compliance director and deputy compliance officer, Oracle, São Paulo
Commerical and digital transformation attorney for Chile, Peru, Colombia and Ecuador, Microsoft, Santiago
All times are in GMT.
Each panel will last 1 hour, which includes a set time for Q&As from attendees.
A full list of panellists, speakers and further panel discussions will be published shortly.
Thursday 19 November
16.30 - Stepping up to the challenge: crisis management in the covid-19 era
Storms take many forms, and the covid-19 pandemic is just one. This panel considers how in-house counsel can be strong leaders in their businesses before, during and after a crisis. Legal sometimes have a reputation for being risk-averse and slow at decision making, but many in-house counsel refute this stereotype. Panellists will assess the different paths GCs and legal teams can carve out to support the operational and commercial divisions of their business, particularly those areas facing potential legal action as a result of widespread lockdowns, travel restrictions and liquidity issues triggered by the covid-19 pandemic. Panellists will share tried-and-tested approaches they have used to protect their businesses’ value when disaster strikes. Topics under discussion include:
17.30 - Labouring in the aftermath of covid-19: labour disputes and other long-view employment issues caused by the pandemic
Panellists will share their strategies for handling unprecedented labour issues emerging in the wake of the pandemic. The long-term repercussions of the covid-19 pandemic might be the most definitive ways it shapes how companies operate going forward, including how they interact with their workforce. Heightened health and safety regulations came in hard and fast during 2020, creating an environment ripe for disputes. There are other changes to working practices as a result of the pandemic; government aid schemes introduced across the region continue to help businesses that are getting employees back to work as lockdowns start to ease. Meanwhile, some companies are adapting to virtual recruitment and working out how best to handle employee health data, as well as making adjustments to compensation packages. Panellists will cover:
Friday 20 September
15:30 - Doing more with less: cost-cutting in a legally sound way
Many companies’ operations have been compromised in 2020 because of disruptions to their supply chains and customer base caused by lockdown measures, putting their profit margins in jeopardy. Certain sectors – including tourism, aviation and retail – have been hit especially hard. In this climate, many businesses are pursuing cost-cutting measures, in which legal teams have a crucial role to play. Business leaders are consulting with GCs to ensure company-wide economising initiatives cause the least disruption and keep the company compliant with relevant regulations. Panellists will talk about the role in-house counsel can play in protecting their company’s short and long-term fiscal health.
16:30 - Tech talks: the convergence of technology, law and knowledge in the new post-pandemic world
The technological revolution within legal departments was well underway before covid-19 hit, but the pandemic has accelerated it even further. In-house counsel are busier than ever with new – often unprecedented – responsibilities, and budget cuts across the board mean teams have to be as efficient as possible. For many, technology has been an invaluable help – both tailor-made solutions as well as off the shelf options are helping teams handle legal issues spanning tax, immigration, labour and litigation: automation programmes, IP and data analytics, as well as AI tools are all enhancing legal department’s capabilities. But knowing what tools to invest in and working within legal budgets can be tough. There’s also the concern that there will be less work for lawyers if software begins to take over. Panelists will identify these threats, identify where the value is for lawyers to evolve, and discuss how in-house counsel must reinvent themselves in this new era, all while integrating technologies seamlessly within their teams and the wider business.