12 June 2019

ALS systems go!

In-house departments relying more on alternative legal services (ALS) says latest survey.


In the latest survey, sixty percent of legal operations professionals, attorneys and support staff of in-house legal departments overwhelmingly said they used alternative legal services in 2018.

Outside counsel spend

According to the Tower Legal Ops Survey 2019, a top initiative of legal departments for 2019 is to manage outside counsel spend. The survey was published by Tower Legal Solutions, an alternative legal service provider which is driving the use of alternative legal services. The survey was fielded to gain insights into what matters most to top decision makers from multi-billion dollar companies in the constantly evolving world of legal operations. The survey asked what’s keeping legal ops leadership up at night? The answer is managing outside counsel spend. In fact, 58.5 percent of those surveyed cited this as their number one strategic legal initiative for 2018. Looking forward to 2019, managing outside counsel remained the number one strategic legal initiative (46.5 percnet), followed by technology tools and systems (43.5 percent) and financial management/controlling costs (39 percent).

Hiring ALSPs

To achieve these goals, legal ops professionals are hiring ALSPs to solve for managing outside counsel spend. In 2018, 60.9 percent of respondents utilized ALSPs and 42.8 percent cited reducing outside legal spend as their number one reason for doing so. Of those who engaged with ALSPs, 98 percent say they achieved their goals for hiring an alternative legal service provider. For 2019 and Beyond, of those who commissioned alternative legal solutions for the first time in 2018, 78 percent said they plan to continue or increase their current use of alternative legal services in 2019. Those surveyed included top decision makers from multi-billion dollar companies, including general counsel, CLOs and head of legal ops. Over 42 percent spent between $20-$40M on legal services in 2018, with 24 percent of all surveyed spending over $40M last year. Data can be found here.

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