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  Retreats and Surveys

Continuous improvement requires comparison with others. It also requires retreats to help legal department members focus on action. Our services cover

surveying satisfaction with the legal department
benchmarking structures, compensation and select issues
conducting off-site sessions for legal departments

For further information on customized surveys or retreats, contact Richard Stock at or (416) 367-4447.

Articles on Surveys

"Survey Says ..."
Lexpert, Vol. 17, No. 4, February 2016

The article presents ideas regarding the emerging configuration of law departments as well as the type of work it is trying to do and not to do. There is little progress reported in the Altman Weil survey regarding cost controls and alternative fee arrangements. Law departments must take the first steps if they want to make changes to legal services delivery.

"The Value Enigma"
CCCA Magazine, Vol. 6, No. 2, Summer 2012

"Surveys: Value and Metrics"
Lexpert, Vol. 13, No. 9, July-August 2012

CCCA's 2012 Barometer survey of corporate counsel found that legal departments provide greatest value by managing risks associated with business decisions. It found workloads to be the most important challenge for in-house counsel. The questions on "hard metrics" were not comprehensive enough, even though fewer than 30% of legal departments reported that they are actually measured for their contributions. Performance management for legal departments is a developing area, and so work needs to be done to define, measure and better communicate the value of legal departments and of individual lawyers.

"Highlights of the 2010 ACLA-CLANZ Legal Department Benchmarking Report"
CCCA Magazine, Vol. 4, No. 3, October 2010
ACLA Journal, Vol 20, Issue No 3, Oct 2010 and Issue No 4, Dec 2010

One hundred and sixty Australian and New Zealand legal departments participated in this extensive study. A dozen sections deal with aspects of performance management - everything ranging from reporting relationships, deployment, resources, workloads and the relative use of time recording systems and charge-backs.
Other highlights include the balance of inside and external counsel, effectiveness indicators for the department, external spend controls, and longer term arrangements with law firms.

"Corporate Legal Department Surveys"
Lexpert, November/December 2007

The article profiles four surveys of corporate counsel conducted in 2007 in Canada, the US and Australia. All reported significant pre-occupation with the rising cost of legal services and the difficulties with innovation in this area. Fewer than 20% of respondents in a survey of 850 counsel answered the question on noteworthy innovations. It appears that in-sourcing, assigning work to the right people and imposing cost restrictions on firms constitutes the state of the art in cost management. The most pressing issues for corporate counsel are managing a growing workload, attracting and retaining qualified counsel to work in the legal department, and staying on top of the company’s business developments.

"The Strategic Client Survey"
Inside Counsel, February 2000

The survey as a tool to gauge the level of client. A well-planned survey will identify weaknesses in service delivery and help lawyers to better understand client needs. Practical suggestions for obtaining optimum results.

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