Parsing the drop off of the HBR Consulting benchmark study

At 219 claimed participants in the 2011 HBR consulting metrics report, the number has dropped, since press releases in the past make much of increases (See my post of Oct. 20, 2010: HildebrandtBakerRobbins press release stated 10% increase in participants.). (There is no mention of what number of those 219 completed only the compensation portion.)

In fact, last year’s report had 252 companies, so the loss of 31 leaves one wondering about the causes of the 15 percent decline.

Maybe it’s the hefty cost? Law departments without deep pockets can’t afford two or three thousand dollars for a survey that averages only 10 companies per industry. Maybe it’s the labyrinthine survey instrument? Managers may elect not to devote the man-hours to trying to complete, estimate, or flat out guess at the numbers. Maybe it reflects organizational disarray? The tumult and disorder of being flung out of Thomson Reuters probably took its toll. Maybe modest-sized law departments, which means nearly everyone out there, don’t find data from giant large departments compelling, nor are they wowed by 11 digit revenue ($10B and above)?

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