ULG's Language Services Blog

Consolidate Translation to Better Control Law Department Costs

According to Altman Weil's 2015 Chief Legal Officer Survey, law department leaders are taking an increasingly strategic approach to rein in costs. The 2015 survey found that 40% of law departments plan to decrease their spend on outside counsel in the next twelve months. While some of the work will go to their own in-house legal staff instead, nearly a quarter of CLOs surveyed will be using vendors and contract lawyers to do work previously done by law firms. Additionally, just under half (49%) of all law departments indicated that some of the decrease will come from work they no longer need outside counsel to do.

For example, Lucy Bassli, Assistant General Counsel at Microsoft Corporation, recently talked about how she created a managed service operation with two trusted outside firms. Law firms David Wright Tremaine and London-based Addelshaw Goddard built their own internal technology and/or processes to monitor the program, analyze patterns and provide continuous improvement said Bassli.

It's a complete managed service model that provides a holistic approach of Microsoft's procurement contracting process — and eliminates the scenario of four to five law firms doing the same type of deal over and over, with the in-house lawyers still in the middle of the engagement between the business owner and the outside firm.

Bassli says her next big project to wrangle is to really globalize the program. With globalization, often comes translation and localization. Inevitably there is overlapping content that must be translated from matter to matter. Unless managed at a corporate level, there is limited ability to leverage those translations for cost reductions. In addition to freeing law firms to focus on their core competencies, working directly with a translation service provider can reduce costs (by recycling prior translations), increase the consistency, and create a more secure and manageable process for information governance.

Ready to free your law firm to focus on core competencies? Let ULG do the work of translating your documents. Reach out to us today.