LPM is the new black indeed

von Marion Ehmann

I do believe that Legal Project Management is the key to solving the biggest challenges in the legal market today: the client value challenge, the more for less dilemma, the profitability issue. I am convinced that both law firms and in-house counsel have a lot to gain from implementing Legal Project Management tools. And this conviction is confirmed almost every day. From the list recent events, I would like to pick out two from last month: Altman Weils Chief Legal Officer Survey 2014 and a consultation paper by the British Solicitors Regulation Authority on the core competences required of solicitors. Altman Weil has been doing its Chief Legal Officer Survey every year since 2000, so it is a really good tool to discover trends. The survey gives a good indication which criteria sophisticated buyers of legal services (in the USA) base their purchasing decisions on. The most interesting survey question is probably: “Select the top three service improvements and innovations you would most like to see from your outside counsel.” At the top of the list (not surprisingly) is greater cost reduction (58%), with more efficient project management (57%) and improved budget forecasting (56%) a very close second and third. Since improved budget forecasting and lower costs for me are a consequence of good project management, all of the first three are about LPM, LPM and then more LPM. If we compare the 2014 survey with the one from 2012, cost reduction has remained more or less the same (58,9% in 2012), while project management and budget forecasting keep climbing up the ladder (from 53% and 52,4% respectively in 2012). The much talked-about non-hourly-based pricing structures, on the other hand, have dropped in importance considerably during the last 2 years (from 53% in 2012 to only 40% this year) ...

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