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Hire former employees for tasks that support litigation (Purdue Pharma)

Clobbered by a wave of lawsuits against its key product, OxyContin, and revenue pressure from a generics competitor, the law department of Purdue Pharma turned to contract lawyers.

Then, inspired by layoffs the company had made, the law department hired 18 former employees and trained them to do work that junior lawyers and paralegals normally handle. “Within a few weeks these employees were conducting research, reviewing and analyzing medical records, summarizing depositions and reviewing and summarizing discovery documents,” Corp Legal Times, Vol. 15, Sept. 2005 at 42. (See my post of July 14, 2005 about hiring former lawyers of a department.)

Started sometime in early 2004, within the next 12-15 months the new system saved the law department $1.5 million in legal expenses.