(L-R) Awards host Andrew Ryan; Howard Rosenberg, CEO, Decipher; awards judge Chris Bull, executive director, Kingsmead Square

Finalists: D2 Legal Technology; LawBid (joint highly commended); LEXSTEP; Signal Media (joint highly commended).

Recruitment due diligence provider Decipher was awarded the supplier innovation for services title in recognition of its lateral hire investigations offering, which provides comprehensive background vetting of lawyers anywhere in the world within 10 days at a low fixed cost.

Conducted by a team of trained analysts, Decipher gathers intelligence and insight on potential hires by building up a personality and market profile based on confidential interviews with former colleagues and peers, and researching their online and social media presence.

The service gives law firms confidence that a potential hire is the right fit for their business and culture, minimising recruitment risk. That could mean saving firms millions of pounds in salary, bonuses and lost revenue; research shows that almost half of lateral hires leave a firm within five years, much too soon to recoup the cost of recruitment.

In one example, Decipher was able to reveal a law firm partner candidate had a number of professional and personal red flags that had not been disclosed, and a book of business that had been overstated, giving the client a detailed picture of why hiring that individual would pose a significant risk.

“Probably an essential service in today’s climate of high stakes, often unsuccessful lateral hiring,” one judge noted.

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