Empsight International compiles benchmarks from large law departments as a competitor to Thomson Hildebrandt’s survey. Empsight’s website states that its most recent CLCM Law covers 170 companies, which had median revenue of $12.9 billion dollars, and covers 7,748 lawyers out of 13,558 overall incumbents.
Although I could criticize myself for the calculations that follow, let me squeeze some juice from those numbers. First, lawyers as a percentage of total staff comes to 57 percent, which is quite close to the typical ratio of lawyers per support staff (See my post of Oct. 27, 2009: one-to-one ratio of lawyers to support staff with 9 references.).
With a further squeeze what comes out is that the survey cohort averages 45.5 lawyers per department. At the median revenue of $12.9 billion, division of average lawyers by median revenue leads to 3.5 lawyers per billion, which is a quite plausible ratio (See my post of Feb. 25, 2009: lawyers per billion with 22 references and one metapost.).