For the general counsel who wishes to plan ahead, the work analysis method can assist. With this method each lawyer projects how the workload may change over the coming 12 to 24 months. Concurrently, the law department solicits from its clients their prospective view of legal needs during the same period.
Marrying the two forecasts produces a picture of legal service demand over the coming years. One can widen this inquiry by speaking with outside counsel about what they see coming; similarly, articles, conferences, consultants, and other sources adumbrate trends. I included this technique in my recent article on strategic planning.