Law Firm Management: Extreme Targeting

Dave Harris says that law firms need to ‘Extreme Target’ to compete with accountancy practices. It is all about the data and the technology handling it

The UK legal arm of PwC is soon expected to have a turnover of £50m in legal services fees. Fast track to 2019 and the prediction is that the organisation will rank among the top 20 legal services providers globally with a revenue of around $1bn. The other big three accounting firms also have similar aspirations. It makes sense for them and others in that sector – given that they are well ensconced in the corporate world already, offering legal services in addition to what they already provide is a logical next step. Culturally too, they are a natural fit as they follow industry standard business practices.

Already, traditional law firms are beginning to feel the pinch and anecdotal evidence suggests that win rates for work aren't as healthy as they used to be due to ever increasing competition. Additionally, corporates are substantially reducing the size of their legal panels. Only recently, Shell reduced the number of firms on its global legal panel from around 250 preferred advisers to just six.

Furthermore, as the 'rule of law' expands into other regions, law firms recognise that growth will come from emerging markets. A recent survey of marketing and business development professionals in law firms across EMEA and APAC substantiates this – 62% of law firms are actively targeting international growth. Accounting practices also see the potential of emerging markets, and already have an established presence in many of the regions.

It is widely acknowledged in the business world that what sets top performing firms apart is a top notch service, but also an exceptional 'end-to-end client experience' as opposed to a siloed, scatter-gun service approach. They are adept at 'extreme targeting'. The firms that really succeed are the ones that really, really focus their efforts.

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Tags: InterAction