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Some variability in participation numbers during 2007-2011 of the ACC/Empsight large-department compensation survey

ACC and Empsight have coordinated for several years on surveys of member law departments. As a company, Empsight focuses on compensation data, at least as summarized by their website: “Empsight International, LLC is a human resource consulting firm which helps employers make better decisions about their investment in people. Our primary focus is on conducting compensation surveys in niche markets, domestically and internationally.” Even so, the survey report appends some staffing and spending metrics.

This year’s CLCM Law survey for large law departments, as it is called, had 186 participants, with average revenue of $25.7 billion and a median of $12.8 billion. Those participating law departments reported 7,481 attorneys and 13,720 total headcount.

Last year that survey had 30 fewer participants (156), with average revenue in excess of $23 billion. A year before that it covered 170 companies (See my post of Nov. 25, 2009: median revenue of $12.9 billion dollars, and 7,748 lawyers out of 13,558 headcount.) while two years before that (in 2007) 205 participated (See my post of Nov. 6, 2007: large department survey reported on 205 companies.).

The fluctuation around 190 or so participants may reflect the number of those large departments that belong to the ACC and who want compensation figures for their annual decisions on raises and bonuses.

Empsight’s survey for smaller law departments this year gathered 306 participants, with an average revenue size of $198 million (median of $125 million). They reported 514 lawyers and 778 total headcount. Empsight has also started a Mid-Market compensation survey for law departments with up to 10 lawyers and $750 million to $4 billion in revenue.

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