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A radical proposal – divert bill-review time to firm-direction time

Don’t even whisper the following thought to your law firms!

What if a general counsel were to abolish review of most invoices and re-direct the time thereby saved into approvals of weekly business plans by law, real-time calls and input, and other forms of on-the-scenes oversight of what law firms do?

After all, the amounts reduced from bills are miniscule (See my post of March 8, 2009: write offs and bill reductions with 8 references and one metapost.).

It takes time to review bills properly (See my post of March 2, 2008: bill review with 25 references.). Everyone despises the task of poring through bills.

And, bill review at best clumsily improves the conduct of law firms because the lessons derived from write-offs may be idiosyncratic rather than systemic, poorly explained to the firm, and irregularly implemented by the partners.

Try a new mantra: practice proactive cost control; eschew retroactive cost review!