In several speeches I have presented a form of the following list. My contention is that these methods to limit the costs of external firms have yet to be proven effective.
1. Offshore lawyers and resources (See my post of Nov. 4, 2007 with some charges leveled against legal process offshoring.).
2. Unbundled services, where a law firm doesn’t do it all (See my posts of April 2, 2005 about unbundling services of law firms; and Sept. 13, 2005 which discusses a 5% estimate for external payments by law departments.).
3. Client representatives on major litigated matters (See my post of Nov. 10, 2007 on companies where clients also approve legal bills.).
4. ADR (arbitration, mediation, etc.) (See my post of May 9, 2007 with some dubious interpretation of data by PriceWaterhous Coopers.).
5. Procurement’s involvement (See my post of Nov. 13, 2007 and references cited.).
6. Electronic billing in terms of material net savings after the initial period (See my post of May 14, 2005 on the legitimacy of projected savings.).
7. Pursuit of recoveries, insurance, and affirmative claims (See my post of Feb. 8, 2006 on DuPont’s law department and its efforts to collect money as a profit center.).
8. Normalize rates across law firms for the same work (See my post of May 21, 2007 on three ways to set fixed fees.).
9. Defense contingency fees (See my posts of May 1, 2006 that makes a similar point; and Oct. 29, 2007 with some data on frequency of the arrangement.).
10. Give inside lawyers financial incentives to cut costs (See my post of May 26, 2006.).