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Seven reasons why clients might perceive law departments to be slow

Consider these reasons why clients might criticize the speed of their legal team.

  • The in-house lawyers might be not very capable. They lack training, draw on inadequate experience, or make do with feeble intelligence
  • The law department might be understaffed to handle even a normal flow of client requests for services.
  • The lawyers in the law department might set priorities poorly among the projects they work on and the order of their effort. Unwise choices on to-do lists lead to client complaints.
  • The clients of the law department might expect unreasonable promptness. Quality legal work takes time and clients as a group might not appreciate that. The noon e-mail can’t get a response by 1PM.
  • The law department might suffer from inadequate infrastructure, which causes delay, such as nonexistent work product systems, no intranet repository, or antiquated technology. Lacking tools, even the most competent lawyers slow down.
  • The law department might not have explained to clients how they should most effectively seek legal advice. For example, clients might fail to provide sufficient information, make excessive demands, or abuse the lawyers with quasi legal tasks.
  • The in-house lawyers and staff might fall short on project management. Despite ability, headcount, sound priorities, understanding clients, tools and in-scope tasks, the lawyers might bungle planning and implementation.
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2 responses to “Seven reasons why clients might perceive law departments to be slow”

  1. Ana says:

    As a paralegal in the office of the general counsel for a large financial institution, I have often heard these complaints from our clients. How can in help my GC overcome this stigma?

  2. Ana, consider legal-project management training. LPM training would help lawyers better manage their work, set priorities, manage their resources and make the case for more resources, make do with less, and better manage stakeholder expectations.