Managing Partners Forum

A terrific conference. I was impressed by the wide variety of viewpoints and candidness of the participants.

David M. Armitage, Esq.
Bryan Cave LLP - Atlanta, GA

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Economic Surveys

  • 2016 Client Advisory 
    by Citi Private Bank and Hildebrandt Consulting

    Although it forecasts that the overall demand for legal services will remain relatively flat for the foreseeable future, this year’s Client Advisory reveals that opportunities abound for smaller and mid-size law firms that successfully adapt to the changing marketplace. For example, mid-size firms can capitalize on the fact that they’re often “go-to” firms in their particular industries or practice areas. With fewer owners and decision-makers, they can be more nimble than law firms with hundreds of lawyers and dozens of offices. And, perhaps most importantly, they offer a significantly more attractive value proposition than BigLaw. Based on what I read in this report, here are a few suggestions for you and your firm to consider:

    • Build a Cohesive, Firm-First Culture that Attracts the Gen X, Y and Millennial Crowd. They are the future and, let’s face it, they’re wired much differently than more senior lawyers.
    • Improve and Enforce Your Firm’s Processes and Procedures in Areas like Client Intake, Billing and Collections. It’s a great way to dramatically improve short-term profitability.
    • Invest in Technology to Improve Lawyer Efficiency and Productivity. Smart phones, I-Pads, VPNs. It’s 2016 after all.
    • Get Closer than Ever to Existing Clients. Go visit them. Get to know their business. Invest in friendships. Show them you care.
    • Become Active in an Established, Well-Respected Law Firm Network. The right network will give your firm global reach and plenty of inbound referrals.
    • Create and Promote Industry Practice Groups. They’re definitely the way to organize your marketing efforts and present your firm’s capabilities for many reasons.
    This is an article well worth talking about at your next partnership meeting.  

  • Mid-Size Firm Report
    Is the Market for Mid-Size Law Firms Finally Stabilizing?

    by By Thomson Reuters Peer Monitor

    This is a two page snap-shot of the marketplace for mid-size law firms so far in 2014 according to Peer Monitor. Although lagging the AmLaw 200 firms in key performance measures, the market appears to be getting better for MidLaw. Now that things are a bit more settled, it’s a great time to regroup as a firm and plan for the future. Those law firms that innovate and embrace change will likely emerge as the leading firms of tomorrow.

  • 2012 Survey of Law Firm Economics 
    by ALM Legal Intelligence and The National Law Journal

    In 2012, we worked closely with ALM and NLJ to conduct the most comprehensive economic survey of mid-size US law firms. 198 firms participated. On average, revenue per lawyer was down about 4%, yet profits per equity partner increased a healthy 7% due mostly to cuts in the number of associates and non-lawyer staff. Other key findings:

    -  70% of firms raised standard hourly rates by an average of 4% in 2012.

    -  8% of firms are actively seeking merger opportunities, while 58% say they are not interested. 34% say they are open to the possibility.

    -  43% of firms say litigation will be the practice area with the most revenue growth in 2012. 24% say corporate will lead the way.

    Check out the complimentary Executive Summary. You can also order the complete survey in both hard copy and electronic formats.    

  • 2010 Survey of Law Firm Economics
    How Small and Midsize Firms Weathered the Storm

    by National Law Journal and ALM Legal Intelligence

    After steep declines in 2008, both revenues and profits for mid-size US law firms have leveled off considerably in 2009-10, according to the just-released 2010 edition of this annual survey. With participation from 187 law firms, it's one of the most important and comprehensive economic surveys for smaller and mid-size law firms. The survey provides a deep look into key economic and financial data of mid-market firms, and breaks it down by firm size, practice area, state, population, etc. It's an invaluable tool to help firm leaders and administrators evaluate their firm's performance relative to comparable law firms. First published in 1972, the Survey of Law Firm Economics is a valuable resource for accurate, relevate and timely data on law firm economics. Click here for more information or to purchase a copy.