Chief Legal Officers Tell Where They’re Headed

John O. Cunningham

The 2017 edition of the Chief Legal Officer Survey was recently published by legal consulting firm, Altman Weil, which summarized 280 responses from 21% of the 1,332 corporate law departments invited to participate.

Among the key survey findings were the following:

  • Nearly 60 percent of the largest law departments (those with 50 or more lawyers) are cutting their total legal spending (part of a continuing trend)
  • Overall, more legal departments plan to increase legal spending on outside counsel in 2018 (first time since 2007)
  • Outsourcing to non-law-firm vendors is reportedly the management tactic that results in the greatest gains in efficiency and cost control, but this tactic is still used very selectively

The second bullet is good news for outside counsel, but the positive reversal of a ten-year trend in lowering outside counsel budgets is much more popular with smaller law departments, according to the survey.

The third bullet is…

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