Advice from the Best in Intellectual Property Law
Patent professionals from some of our Top Patent Firms share their stories of success and speak on the challenges they see in the industry.
At the start of each year, we publish our annual rankings of the best patent firms in each technology center at the USPTO. We do this for two reasons: 1) to recognize firms that go above and beyond in supporting their clients and 2) to discover firms on the cutting edge of a rapidly changing industry. These patent professionals are the best of the best, and we wanted to learn more about what makes them tick.
After releasing our list, we reached out to a few representatives from our Top Firms. They shared some insight into their firm success and the challenges they currently face in the industry. Four key themes emerged:
- Client Trust and Communication
- Company Culture and Talent Retention
- Adopting a Remote Work Culture
- Efficient Operations and Innovative Technologies
Here’s what they had to say.
Client Trust and Communication
“There is market pressure to do the same work faster and cheaper. The key to facing and overcoming this obstacle is really about communication. As clients face cost pressure, we constantly remind them about the quality and efficiency we provide through our unparalleled expertise.” - HARNESS IP: CEO, Ray Millien
"We build strong relationships with our clients so they trust our advice during the application drafting and patent prosecution stages. Our clients look to us as their trusted counselors in highly competitive, technologically advanced industries." - HAUPTMAN HAM: Partner, Ronald G. Embry, Jr.
“We have an excellent team of quality lawyers that are committed to their clients and to the practice of IP law. Importantly, our team consists of complete lawyers that do more than simply prosecute patent applications but instead can solve a large array of IP problems for our clients. Our lawyers are creative and well-versed in all aspects of the law, meaning that they can provide the highest level of advice to our clients.” - POLSINELLI: Department Chair, Intellectual Property, Patrick C. Woolley
"We are proud of what we've accomplished for our clients and all our stakeholders. For clients, excellent and timely work meeting needs when they arise, and for employees, life-changing opportunities for career progression and work-life balance." - LEE & HAYES: Co-Managing Partner and Owner, Rob Peck
Company Culture and Talent Retention
“[One of our most significant challenges] is hiring qualified professionals to get the job done and having a consistent process for team member improvement. We highlight our excellent firm qualities to attract high-caliber professionals who provide the quality service we deliver.” - HAUPTMAN HAM: Partner, Randy A. Noranbrock
"People are our biggest resource, and it is where we need to keep our focus this year. Recruiting, training, and developing a highly skilled and diverse workforce to maintain client service is key to success." - QUARLES & BRADY: Partner, Tammy VanHeyningen
“In Polsinelli's IP department, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) is part of our DNA. Our client teams are never static and are naturally diverse — without regard to how someone looks or speaks — because we know our respective strengths. We have been intentional in how we train our staff — we continuously provide opportunities for professional development, allowing everyone to develop into their best professional self.” - POLSINELLI: Department Chair, Intellectual Property, Patrick C. Woolley
"Talent recruitment and retention are two of the most significant challenges facing the legal industry today…it is incredibly important that we promote a culture of inclusivity and collaboration. Everyone has an equally important role on the team. Helping each other grow and excel is a major priority for us." - LATHROP GPM: Director of Practice Management, Kate Tompkins
“Our people are our strength – it is both a fact and a ‘cultural non-negotiable’ at the firm. We hire the best, train the best, and offer world-class patent services to our clients…we succeed or fail based on our quality.” - LEE & HAYES: Co-Managing Partner and Owner, Rob Peck
Adopting a Remote Work Culture
“The effects of the pandemic are still with us. Thus, firms should focus on the mental well-being of their personnel and figure out ways to permanently accommodate some portion of remote work. This must be done while simultaneously assuring all personnel are collaborating and feel part of a team.” - HARNESS IP: CEO, Ray Millien
“We worked hard to maintain a positive, professional culture while adapting to people's needs during the last two very difficult years. We adapted to the remote work environment very quickly and managed to maintain client relationships and meet client expectations in a rapidly evolving environment.” - QUARLES & BRADY: Partner, Tammy VanHeyningen
“Balancing the drive to return to normal work patterns with new ones that emerged during the pandemic will be key; the firms that succeed will be those who master remote management while making a return to the workplace attractive and meaningful.” - LEE & HAYES: Co-Managing Partner and Owner, Rob Peck
“Staying ahead of the curve should always be the focus in IP. Our lawyers, patent agents, and technical specialists follow trending issues in the industries that they serve, and we always focus on what is coming next. The question “what comes next” also informs our talent recruitment strategy, practice operation, technology, and other key practice management areas.” - LATHROP GPM: Director of Practice Management, Kate Tompkins
Efficient Operations and Innovative Technologies
“Successful law firms must be agile, digital, connected, mobile, cutting-edge, and global. Harness IP was established in 1921, but that doesn’t mean we are “old-fashioned.” We thrive by constantly evaluating new productivity tools and embracing change at the same speed as our clients – and outpacing our competitors.” - HARNESS IP: CEO, Ray Millien
“We use a variety of software to track work progress and workflow throughout the firm.” - HAUPTMAN HAM: Partner, Joshua L. Pritchett
"Microsoft Teams has been instrumental in keeping our internal teams and client outreach on task…We also started using Juristat over the past several years, and it has been very helpful in allowing us to evaluate Examiners when developing strategies for patent prosecution and competitive analysis when preparing client pitches or responses to Requests for Proposals." - QUARLES & BRADY: Partner, Tammy VanHeyningen
“Polsinelli has invented a patent drafting tool known as PatentCAD, which has helped increase the efficiency of drafting patent applications. One of the great challenges for any lawyer is to be efficient, and we believe this tool goes a substantial way towards increasing efficiency.” - POLSINELLI: Department Chair, Intellectual Property, Patrick C. Woolley
“The patent analytics that we get from Juristat, for example, has been incredibly helpful to our practice group. We are able to pull actionable data to help inform prosecution strategy, as well as business development strategy. The analytics help us make more informed, strategic decisions for clients and within minutes puts data in our hands that would otherwise take hours to pull.” - LATHROP GPM: Director of Practice Management, Kate Tompkins
Our mission here at Juristat is to build products that bring more transparency, predictability, and equity to patent prosecution. By highlighting these voices, we hope to encourage an exchange of ideas in the industry.
And of course, we're always happy to hear that Juristat solutions attributed to a firm's success, as you read from some of those interviewed above. To see how Juristat can transform your practice, schedule a meeting with us.