Here we go again: Altman Weill CLO survey 2019

Deze week verscheen het jaarlijkse onderzoek van Altman Weill. De management summary biedt al de nodige inzicht. Ik maak graag van de gelegenheid gebruik een aantal uitkomsten met jullie te delen die raakvlakken hebben met ons model.

Mijn oog viel bijvoorbeeld op:

“Law departments reversed course on outside counsel spend from 2018 to 2019. Only 27% of departments increased their spending on law firms compared to 42% of departments that did so last year. At the same time, the number of departments making decreases was about comparable to the prior year.”

“This pull back on law firm spending may reflect the results of doing more work in-house, the use of lower priced firms or non-firm alternatives, renegotiated rate packages, or some combination of these and other cost control efforts. Of all the budget metrics the survey tracks, outside counsel spend has been the most volatile in the post-recession period as law departments have experimented with various tactics to reduce and/or rebalance their use of external resources.”

Ook wordt er het een en ander gemeld over de inzet van contract lawyers. Bijvoorbeeld:

“Nineteen percent of law departments will add contract lawyers to the staff in the next 12 months, up from 15% in 2018. Fewer departments will add to their paralegal and support staff positions in 2019 than in the prior year.”

In het licht van de Legal Ops wordt de koppeling gemaakt naar non-law-firm vendors:

“Seventy-four percent of departments that have added operations personnel this year reported a significant improvement in efficiency. A greater use of paralegals and other paraprofessionals increased efficiency in 73% of departments. Outsourcing to non-law- firm vendors was successful in two-thirds of departments, and the use of contract or temporary lawyers improved efficiency for 63% of departments that pursued the tactic. In each case, these are efforts to reallocate work assignments, delegating to the most efficient resource and level, thereby freeing up department lawyers to work at their fullest capacity. These are choices that generally produce positive results in a relatively short time.”

Interessante eye-opener?

“External cost control efforts focus on law firm and vendor expenditures. In this category, three of the four most effective tactics involve workforce/resource rebalancing, including outsourcing to non-law-firm vendors, shifting law firm work to in-house lawyers and shifting work to lower priced law firms. Although no more than a third of law departments are pursuing any one of these techniques, they are effective in about nine out of every ten departments that utilize them.”

Het is natuurlijk een Amerikaans onderzoek, maar het geeft desondanks, denk ik, toch een interessante inkijk in de juridische markt in de breedste zin.