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9 Neatly Organized LexisNexis Reports and Studies from 2015

9 LexisNexis Reports, Studies and Surveys from 2015

We cover as many reports, surveys and studies as possible on these pages.  Regular readers will find most of these posts neatly categorize under this legal industry study tag.

Sometimes the data being reported is from third-parties and sometimes it is our own. As 2015 draws to a close, here is a curated list of nine studies we produced or reported in this blog this year.  They are listed in chronological order from the beginning of the year to the end.

1. Quantifiable Small Law Gains from Automation

A Blue Hill Research study found that small law firms that use practice management software to automate key functions use 40 percent less staff – and those efficiencies grow in value as the firm grows. For example, on average the research found a five-attorney firm without practice management technology has 2.5 staff members in support, which nets out to $149,923 per year. By contrast, a 5-attorney firm with practice management technology has 1.8 staff members in support, which tallies up to $107,088 per year – cost savings of $42,835.

 2. Law Firms and Developing Business 

This survey of 400 law firm marketing and business development professionals found that 52% said competition is the #1 barrier to law firm growth. The data suggests law firms are placing a greater emphasis on the narrower activities of business development.

3. Corporate Legal Department Maturity Model

Survey research late last year indicated most legal departments are in the early stages of maturity with respect to technology, analytics and process. So this year, the CounselLink team dug in and spoke with legal departments to develop a corporate legal maturity model.  This model is an analytical tool for measuring law department performance in those terms. The model — and corresponding report — enables inside counsel to benchmark their organization against peers and share best practices.

4. Biggest Challenges for Law Firms in 2015

Keeping pace with technology – it’s the top law firm challenge according to a poll of attendees at ABA TECHSHOW®. Economic pressure, follows a close second, and amid an industry climate where clients are expecting more for less from legal service providers.

5. Year-End ELM Trends: Big Law Winning in IP Litigation

Twice each year the CounselLink team culls through $18 billion’s (and growing) worth invoicing data to identify benchmarks in enterprise legal management.  Both reports look at six key metrics however, the year-end report seeks major trends in corporate legal spend. In May, the team released a report analyzing data for the full-year 2014 and found, “The largest firms are winning a growing share-of-market in IP litigation – from 36% in 2011 to 61% by the year ending 2014.”

 6. Litigation Cost Control US P&C Insurance Carriers

As far as legal departments go, those working insurance claims for U.S. property and casualty (P&C) carriers are under constant pressure to drive operational efficiency, while providing quality customer service. In the first of a series, this survey of 86 P&C insurers found that legal and claims departments are focused on the “big picture” or the total cost of a matter, as opposed to targeting just settlement costs or just legal costs.

 7. How to Get Ahead for Law School Graduates

A survey of 300 US attorneys, conducted by our sister division in research, involved in hiring found that 95 percent believe “law graduates lack legal research, litigation and transactional skills.” With an estimated price tag of $19,000 to train one new hire, this gap between graduates’ readiness and real-world practice costs law firms considerable time and money.

 8. Mid-Year ELM Trends: Law Firm Billing Rates

In the second, and most recent ELM Trends report, the team found median partner billing rates at the “Largest 50” law firms – those with more than 750 lawyers – rose to $711 per hour, based on 12 months of data ending June 30, 2015.  That number is up from the last report where median partner rates came in at $675 per hour for the 12 months ending December 31, 2014. This annual legal spending trends report found that big law billing rates grew notably – pushing a 6 percent increase in the gap between the top two tiers of law firms, by attorney headcount, from 38 percent to 44 percent.

 9. Most Effective Legal Department Metrics

If corporate attorneys across the market are seeking a sharper understanding of legal department metrics, then they might do well to review what peers in the insurance vertical are doing to measure litigation costs.  This second study in the series complements the P&C survey listed in #5 above.  The survey of 94 U.S. Property & Casualty insurance professionals managing litigation for carriers in claims or law departments, identifies what they deem the most effective legal metrics.

* * *

For some of the additional reports from third parties we’ve covered, here are the cliff notes or cheat sheets to some 17 studies and surveys from around the industry:

Note:  Compiled with assistance from Daryn Teague.

If you enjoyed this post, you might also like:
Law Firm Competition:  Buyers Becomes a New Entrant

Photo credit: Flickr, Adam Rifkin, Oddly Satisfying Beach Rocks Organized Neatly, (CC BY 2.0)

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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.