As we reflect back on this past year, it’s worth looking back on what CEB has learned in analyzing legal departments’ budgets from over 300 different companies this past year (we’ve been doing this for a decade, so we’re homing in on some long term trends.)
The trends are all things many, including me, have been writing about for some time (that’s comforting). The nine trends are:
1. Moving more work in-house. Outside counsel almost always lose on make versus buy decisions.
2. Use non-lawyer professionals more often. A good paralegal is worth more than a poor lawyer. Take advantage of them.
3. Invest in legal operations capabilities. Legal ops control costs.
4. Invest selectively in legal technologies. Applause for matter management and ebilling technologies.
5. Unbundle legal services, particularly in litigation. This is an area of huge potential savings.
6. Focus on litigation management and oversight. How departments operate without doing this escapes me.
7. Use smaller firms. (So how much of their clients’ money do big firms invest in art? Check out Dewey and Howrey)
8. Reduce the number of law firms.
9. Use alternative fee arrangements judiciously.
From my vantage point, these are on the money. The CEB post is certainly worth checking out.