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Monthly #BusinessofLaw RoundUp for November 2014

Business-of-Law-Most-Read-November

If there’s one thing these monthly roundups demonstrate, it’s the trends that are important from a reader’s perspective.  We’ve come a long way since April when we first started publishing these roundup posts – an even longer since launching this blog in January.

Thank you for spending a few moments with us here – and for the many engagements and conversations we’ve been able to have as a result of this publication.

Top 5 Business of Law Blog Posts

Here are the posts that were read the most in November:

1. 10 Telling Statistics from Optimistic Legal Departments

2. 6 Corporate Legal Trends from the ACC Conference

3. Can Rainmaking Be Taught in Law Firms?

4. In Evaluating Outside Counsel, Corporate Legal says Relationships Still Matter

5. Legal Infographic: What are the Top Corporate Legal Goals?


What’s new in Litigation and Business of Law?

We made just two announcements November and the are listed below.  For those interested in seeing press releases published by the LexisNexis software division in real time, we’d encourage you to subscribe via RSS here.

  • LexisNexis CounselLink Inks Legal Software Deal with The Hanover Insurance Group “CounselLink is a best-in-class product for ELM – and it’s ahead of the curve for benchmarking and reporting,” said attorney Fredrick Schill, director of Outside Litigation for The Hanover Insurance Group. “The promise of CounselLink is to provide us with the means for managing outside legal services – making sure we get the best possible outcomes.”
  • LexisNexis Survey Finds Renewed Optimism in Corporate Legal“Despite a renewed sense of optimism among corporate attorneys, it’s clear from this survey that legal departments remain focused on driving value from budgets,” said Mike Haysley, director of Strategic Consulting for the LexisNexis CounselLink® business, the team that conducted the survey. “This is the new normal – what businesses discovered beginning in 2008 is that legal spending can be managed without exposing the company to additional risk; as a consequence, bigger legal budgets aren’t likely to return even as the business climate continues to improve.”

     

5 Client Reports for Law Firms to Run

Our own James Paterson was fortunate enough to have a contributed article accepted by Legal Ink Magazine titled: Decoding Attorneys Discomfort with Client Billing.   In it, he outlines both a problem and a solution in this way:  

Profile your ideal client. A majority of law firms (67%) use software with integrated invoicing and billing – but do not use the reporting features these tools provide to analyze their client base.  Such analysis helps a law firm build a profile of an ideal client so the firm can focus its marketing and business development efforts to attract more clients that fit the profile.  Examples of typical reports a solid practice management program ought to be capable of performing include:

Time-to-pay.  Identifies which clients or types of clients are fastest to pay invoices.

Outstanding accounts receivable (AR).  Analyzes which clients, or types of clients, have bills outstanding and for how long.

Time tracking analysis.  Comparing work invoiced vs. actual work performed (this is useful for understanding the profitability of a flat fee).

Client profitability.  Distinguishes which clients and what types of cases are most profitable.

Top clients.  Characterizes a law firm’s top clients by fees billed vs. fees collected.

7 Hot Legal Links Shared in November

Using a service called Bitly, we’ve analyzed the top seven links we shared on social media channels that earned the most engagement:

#7. 3 Geeks and a Law Blog: Using Novelty, Surprise, and Shock to Change Behavior

…using gamification to reduce jaywalking (video embedded below), I got to thinking how such a method of novelty, surprise, and shock could be used to improve behaviors within our work environments.

#6.  Corporate Counsel: Law Departments Look at the Future, Like What They See

Around 37 percent of legal departments surveyed indicated that they expect to increase their technology spending over the next year.

#5.  Law Technology Today: Law Practice, Then and Now

In those days, the IBM PC was a 64k (expandable to 128k) system with dual 360k floppies, a green monitor, and an optional 20 MEGABYTE hard drive cost $10,000.

#4.  Real Lawyers Have Blogs: Law blog more valuable than law review in landing job

The things historically thought of value by law students — which law school, law review, moot court, who you know — were no longer as important.

#3.  RussHaskin.com: Profit Drivers – Utilization and Setting Standard Hours

We should immediately raise expected hours for associates from 1800 to 2000 hours…I asked the room how additional revenue would come through the door simply by changing expectations on standard hours. The managing partner with a straight face simply said that people would work harder.

#2. Legal Ink Magazine:  Why 25% of Lawyers Can’t Sell

Skepticism: lawyers have a 90% score for this trait, where as the general public scores on only 50%.

#1.  The Attorney Marketing Center: An attorney who gets it

He gets to pick and choose the cases he accepts and because he charges top dollar, he doesn’t need lots of business to enjoy a very comfortable income.

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That’s a wrap for November – was there an incredible legal industry story you’d like to share?  Please feel free to share it in the comments.

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like:
Monthly #BusinessofLaw Roundup for October 2014 

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About Frank Strong

Frank Strong
Frank Strong is the communications director for the LexisNexis software division located on NC State’s Centennial Campus in Raleigh. In this capacity, he leads communications efforts in support of software products for law practice and law department management and also litigation tools – across large law, small law and corporate counsel segments. With more than 15 years of experience in the high-tech sector, Strong previously served as director of public relations for Vocus, which developed marketing, PR and media monitoring software. He has held multiple roles both in-house with corporations, ranging from startups to global organizations, and has also endured the rigors of billable hours, having completed gigs at PR firms including the top 10 global firm Hill & Knowlton. A veteran of two year-long deployments, Strong has concurrently served in uniform in reserve components of the military for more than 20 years, initially as an enlisted Marine and later as an infantry officer in the Army National Guard. Strong holds a BA in Film and TV production from Worcester State University, an M.A. in Public Communication from American University, and an M.B.A. from Marymount University. He is a PADI-certified Master Scuba Diver and holds a USPA "B" skydiving license.