Business of Law

Law firm leaders say industry shift permanent, yet don't list value and efficiency as top concerns

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Law firm leaders say the paradigm shift is here to stay, according to a new Altman Weil survey.

Yet surprisingly they don’t put concerns such as delivering value to clients and improving efficiency at the top of the list when asked an open-ended question about the biggest challenges they will face over the next two years, reports the Am Law Daily (sub. req.). Instead, they cite increasing revenue, generating new business, growing their law firms and increasing profitability.

But that’s putting the cart before the horse, says Thomas Clay, an Altman Weil principal who designed the Law Firms in Transition 2013 survey.

“Revenue growth was just so far ahead of anything else,” he said, noting that 15.2 percent of respondents picked that as their first concern. “I understand it, but I think it’s a short-term thing. I’d much rather say satisfying clients … and, one could argue that, if you do that, you will grow revenue.”

An Altman Weil press release provides more details about the survey results, which were announced Tuesday.

The survey queried leaders at 238 firms with at least 50 attorneys on their roster. One-third were among those included in the Am Law 100.

See also

ABA Journal: Paradigm Shift series

ABA Journal: “Law Job Stagnation May Have Started Before the Recession—And It May Be a Sign of Lasting Change” “Among ACC’s Value Champs, Pfizer’s ‘Radical’ Plan: Standardized Expectations, Law Firm Collaboration” “More lawyers charge $1,150 an hour, but ‘sticker price’ discounts hit collection rates”

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