“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” – Sun Tzu, The Art of War
As with many of his other teachings, these words from Sun Tzu are as applicable to business strategies as they are to military ones. They speak to the importance of planning, preparedness, and, perhaps most importantly, competitive advantage.
For law firms striving to achieve maximum profitability or compete for new business, the “know yourself” component is essential.
Using up-to-the-minute data to inform law firm business strategy
In their pursuit of knowing themselves and the competition, many firms are implementing technology that gives them insight into their own operations as well as those of competing firms.
Peer Monitor from Thomson Reuters provides legal professionals with the data they need to make strategic business decisions for the firm. They receive invaluable insights from actual real-time data drawn directly from the financial systems of other participating firms.
From understanding the productivity of individual timekeepers to gathering competitive market information, Peer Monitor brings clarity to a frequently ambiguous analysis. Let’s take a closer look at three of the most frequent use cases:
- Rate analysis: This functionality allows firms to see competing firms’ data in aggregate form to understand more completely the rates their peers are charging for certain types of matters. Whether it’s part of their research for an RFP or simply checking market tolerance, many firms find Peer Monitor’s rate comparison functionality to be invaluable.
- Market and expense analysis: Firms can use Peer Monitor to learn more about salaries, equipment, and real estate costs as well as the demand for certain types of legal services. Some firms use Peer Monitor data to research new markets being considered for expansion. In addition, this functionality can be helpful to firms trying to understand if their expense models are in line with peers in their immediate markets.
- Productivity and efficiency: Another prominent use case of Peer Monitor is for hours assessment. Firms can use the data to analyze hours by practice group, lawyer title, and other criteria. This type of analysis helps firms maintain appropriate headcounts based on the demand for services in specific practice areas.
Using real data is better than a survey
Firms that don’t use Peer Monitor primarily get their data from surveys. But there are a number of situations where survey data may not always provide the most current or accurate picture.
This can happen in a couple different ways:
- The “honor system” approach to surveys: Firms that rely on survey data also rely on the respondents to provide honest and accurate answers. Issues like an individual’s interpretation of the firm’s data or simply wanting to paint the best picture of its current situation can dramatically impact the accuracy of survey results.
- Survey data can quickly become obsolete: When firms respond to surveys, the answers provided represent what is happening at that moment in time. Using data from Peer Monitor, users see the most current data available every time. This situation is exacerbated by the lag time between when the surveys are completed and when the findings are published.
Using the up-to-the-minute data provided by Peer Monitor helps ensure that firms are making decisions based on the most accurate, relevant, and timely data available.
Learn more about how your firm can benefit from Peer Monitor
There is no aspect of your firm’s business that could not benefit from the insights available from Peer Monitor. From budgeting and cost controls to RPFs and rate analysis, Peer Monitor can help your firm make better informed and smarter decisions. Contact a representative today to learn more about this invaluable tool and how to get started.