For this exercise, assume four benchmarks are key: lawyers per billion dollars of revenue, legal staff per billion, internal spending as a percentage of revenue, and external spending as a percentage of revenue. For each metric, I ranked all 48 countries that have participating law departments in the fourth release of General Counsel Metrics. Accordingly, the country whose median law department had the least lawyers per billion was ranked 1 for that metric; the country with the highest median ranked 48. I did the same for each country for each of the metrics. The total of the four ranks gave a cumulative country score that allowed me to sort and find the best and worst.
Number one, with a cumulative score of 62 (an average of a bit more than 15) was the Netherlands and its 32 departments. At the median was Belgium, with a cumulative score of 97 for its 13 companies. The USA trailed at number 7 with 106 (358 law departments) and Singapore’s 13 brought up the rear with 139. I could write pages about this first-ever effort to compare countries on their legal staff and spend, but I will defer.
My findings for this post focused on the 11 countries that had at least 10 departments. Together they have 590 departments, comprising 84% of the total benchmark group.
If you would like to see the results for the fuller set of 19 countries with at least seven law departments, e-mail me from your corporate account,at Rees(at)ReesMorrison(dot)com. I will send you the Excel file with the data.
Take part in the largest benchmarking database ever assembled for legal departments! Click here for the six-minute, confidential online survey based on your fundamental 2009 metrics.