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Cost Control as Part of AmLaw 200 Turnaround Strategies

Many legal publications and consultants offer advice for large law firms on how to stabilize and recover. Their suggestions focus on lawyer compensation, practice group strategy, alternative billing, and business development. I remain surprised at how little they focus on reducing law

The Client View of Law Firm Staffing

Clients must pay attention to how their law firms work. More savings may flow from changing how lawyers work than from bargaining down rates. BigLaw firms are cutting staff. Are the changes good for general counsels? The demand for legal services has plummeted, so laying-off lawyers a

Toward More Rational Law Firm Lay-offs

It’s hardly news that a US or UK law firm lays off lawyers and staff. Hogan & Hartson’s buyout of selected staff my eye. Hogan & Hartson offers buyouts to 240 staffers (National Law Journal, 10 Feb 2009) reports that the firm is offering buyouts to 240 legal secret

Law Firm Staffing Reference Model

How should law firms support lawyers? Sounds simple but is it really? Firms can compare their staff ratios or cost as a percent of revenue using survey data. The averages, however, conceal huge variations. For example, I know that three large NYC law firms have lawyer to secretary rat

An Interesting Take on the Future of Legal Secretaries

Fellow blogger Jordan Furlong has an excellent blog post about the potential role of legal secretaries. I’ve written about this topic as well and am glad to have another voice join in. In Legal secretaries 2.0 at, Furlong picks up on one firm’s idea of assigning s

Technology and Legal Secretaries

Starting in the early 1990s, I noticed that secretarial work was changing as a result of widespread lawyer use of PCs. Yet I have seen few articles about this much less smart management reaction. Already in 1991, I thought secretarial roles needed re-thinking. By 2003, when the main r

The Future of Legal Secretaries

This article first appeared in the May 12, 2003 issue of Legal Times ABSTRACT:  Advances in legal technology have caused the role of secretaries to change significantly. Law firms have opportunities to re-think how they manage secretaries to save money and improve internal and client