Despite the fact that your business has in-house legal expertise, there will likely come a time when it’s necessary to select outside counsel. This can be a very challenging process. Too often, the decision is made based on guesswork, or because one particular law firm was more affordable than another, with little thought given to other factors that will play a role in the relationship. Ultimately, data must be considered when selecting outside counsel, and analytics can and should play a role.
Expertise, Not Reputation
In the past, reputation was the yardstick by which you measured when choosing outside counsel. Today, that is not the case. Expertise matters more than reputation. Of course there’s more to it than that, and even measuring expertise can be challenging without the use of analytics.
The Wide Range of Data to Consider
When choosing outside counsel, you’ll need to consider a broad range of data in your decision, including the following:
- How experienced is the law firm in terms of alternative fee arrangements?
- Can the law firm adhere to legal billing guidelines?
- What patents were involved in previous cases with this law firm?
- Is the law firm able to conform to your budget?
- What findings and outcomes were involved?
- Will the law firm communicate regularly on budget-related matters?
- Has the firm successfully represented clients in similar circumstances, industries, or cases?
- What is the profile of the team that will be working with your company?
- What types of value-added services are being offered?
- What is the law firm’s profile in terms of diversity?
Data is the lifeblood of every business, but it can be challenging to leverage. This happens particularly when it comes to finding outside legal counsel. The key here is to use the right software. Modern AI algorithms can bring machine learning to bear so that they can connect all the dots for each of the law firms that you are considering.
For instance, the right software will be able to factor in things like lawyers and law firms involved, other parties, judges, patents, findings and outcomes, damages awarded, and more. Based on this, you can create an accurate picture of each law firm and then make an informed choice that will help support positive outcomes for your organization.
Ultimately, analytics are not just useful when choosing outside counsel. They are essential for making an informed comparison and the right decision.