How Randstad’s legal team became innovation leaders with Josef

In-house legal teams are constantly under pressure to do more with less. And as workloads increase, routine work begins to demotivate high performers. Against this backdrop of packed calendars and inboxes overflowing with urgent documents to review, it’s easy to see how innovation can be sidelined.

But, this in-house team used Josef to do it anyway, freeing up time and effort spent on repetitive work, and inspiring its team members.


The Randstad legal team had been transforming its way of working, and seeking opportunities for continuous improvement and innovation.

As a leading global HR and recruitment firm with almost 300,000 employer clients, one of the first processes identified by General Counsel Gabrielle Nikodem was onboarding new clients.

Many of Randstad’s employer clients would request changes to the standard terms of business. As a result, Gabrielle and her team were spending time processing these requests, clarifying details, sourcing and making changes to documents, reverting back to the sales team, and reconciling final versions against their systems. These requests and mark-ups were being passed to the legal team via many different routes, ranging from phone conversations, to email chains to hand-written notes on physical copies of contracts. Nobody, including the clients, liked the existing processes.

Randstad needed a solution that was:

  1. Easily managed by the legal team, without needing coding skills or resources from the IT team or external tech suppliers;
  2. Empowering, involving the legal team directly in their digital transformation program;
  3. Low-risk, being something that wouldn’t break the bank with a large upfront cost, or lock them into an onerous contract; and
  4. Impressive, user-friendly, visually appealing, and professional, wow-ing clients and internal stakeholders alike


Randstad discovered Josef ticked all these boxes and more.

Josef was fit for purpose, easy-to-use and scalable without requiring major financial or technology commitments. Randstad could easily pilot the platform to a regional sales team and small group of clients, before making the decision to use the bots (and create more!) for other uses and geographies.

“We researched a lot of solutions in the market. With a lot of technology solutions, you need to invest a lot of time and resources up front. But Josef was the easiest sell to my directors. It’s low commitment and low risk.”
– Gabrielle Nikodem, General Counsel at Randstad (Australia, New Zealand and South-East Asia)

Josef’s no-code platform empowered Randstad’s legal team to create and own the bots. By setting the parameters of the contract, users can pick and mix their own terms within the accepted options. The legal team maintains oversight and can easily track the progress of the contracts and see any changes that have been made.

After reviewing the contract document and mapping their new process, a member of Randstad’s legal team built and launched a test bot within days. And now legal teams in Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong are leveraging that earlier work, building and launching bots in a matter of hours by simply amending the original bot.

At a glance

  • 1 hour

    Saved per contract

  • hours (not days or weeks)

    The time it took one lawyer to build the bot

  • 100+ hours saved

    By Gabrielle's team each year from a single bot


What clients (and internal stakeholders!) want

Stakeholders love how quick and easy it is to use, and how good the finished products look.

Randstad’s internal teams have quickly taken to the new process and are seeing benefits. The bots generate contracts quickly and in a professional and consistent format, and the legal team maintains control and oversight.

Saved time and resources

Randstad found that the time spent on changes per contract was around one hour. In many cases, changes were similar, repetitive and non-legal. By automating this process, Gabby’s small team estimates it will save them over 100 hours per year. In just a few weeks, the bot has saved far more than the time it took to build.

Colleagues “loved the challenge”

In addition to the efficiency benefits the bot brings, Gabrielle says her colleagues loved the challenge of building a bot.

With the tools they need to improve inefficient processes and experience seeing it happen from their bot, Randstad’s legal team is more motivated to continue improving processes and inspired to look creatively at everyday problems.

A great starting point for innovation and transformation

The Josef bot has been an ideal starting point to demonstrate how the legal team can lead in innovation and transformation.

The success of the bot has also fuelled appetite for more innovation and transformation. Randstad’s legal team has been acknowledged internally for its role in driving cultural change and customer-centric experience, and is actively exploring further opportunities for automation.

“We know how to work it now, and within our department we can see a lot more opportunities to develop, grow and apply it to other business cases,” Gabrielle concluded.

“It’s showing my department the idea of innovation and transformation in practice. It starts a conversation with other departments. Sure, a lot of stuff is done in the front office, but why can’t legal start cultural change within our organisation?”
– Gabrielle Nikodem, General Counsel at Randstad (Australia, New Zealand and South-East Asia)

Be inspired!

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