“Take no man’s word for it.” I subscribe wholeheartedly to the motto of the Royal Society (London) in the enlightened version: “Take no person’s word for it.” As a partisan of empirical evidence in law department management or at least explanations that try to be objective, I look for proof, not anecdote or assertion (See my post of July 20, 2011: the principle of charity.).
No-cost Federal Mediation Conciliation Services. I was told during a consulting project that the FMCS provides free intermediation when impasses develop between unions and employers. The service has professional mediators who are quite good. Who pays for this reduction in legal fees for certain companies (See my post of May 15, 2005: Nat. Labor Relations Board; Aug. 30, 2006: Industrial Relations departments deal with unions; and Dec. 22, 2006: long-serving GC of Steelworker’s union.)?
Calendar year or fiscal year for benchmarks. Benchmark data typically covers calendar years but perhaps it should cover the fiscal year of the participants. That cutoff might make it easier for law departments to assemble the data on spending when their company is not on a calendar fiscal year. I don’t think the data would be distorted by seasonality (See my post of July 8, 2011: seasonal fluxes of invoices.).
More about the Medela hold-back arrangement. I have referred to Medela’s alternative to hourly billing (See my post of June 19, 2011: litigation fee arrangement.). The CEO of Medela called and gave additional details. He confirmed that the company had no inside lawyers managing the litigation. He came up with the approach based on what he had read, notably about Jeff Carr’s efforts at FMC.
Hildebrandt’s law department consulting group, the best, circa 2007. Sic transit gloria mundi. At its zenith Joel Henning, Suzanne Hawkins, Jon Bellis, and myself were partners in the group. Working with us were many other capable consultants, including Kristin Stark, Truda Chow, Troy Laws, Marsha Keefe, and Lauren Chung. That assemblage of talent has now almost completely left consulting or dispersed.