In today’s legal industry, demanding clients want more for less. More and more, expertise and price are the factors that major corporate clients look for in their search for new outside counsel. The size of the firm and the prestige associated with the name on the door are much less relevant today than in the past. Firms of any size can compete for work with any client – if they have what it takes to get the job done.
Midsize firms have proven to be a particularly good fit for major corporate clients. Their structure, innovative cultures, responsiveness, and ability to collaborate both internally and with clients makes them attractive business partners. Their ability to mesh seamlessly with clients’ internal stakeholders makes them an integral part of the business that – in many ways – is equally invested in the success of the business.
The characteristics of a competitive midsize firm
There are many aspects of midsize firms’ operations that make them a solid choice for major corporate clients, including:
- Agility: The ability to respond quickly and to nimbly adjust course with the clients’ changing needs is an invaluable trait for a prospective outside counsel firm.
- Specialized expertise: The tendency of smaller firms to focus on a niche area of the law is often a benefit for corporate clients looking for representation in an extremely focused matter.
- Technology investment and adoption: Midsize firms are considered to be more open to investing in and implementing new technology.
- Efficiency: Agility, practice area focus and technology all contribute to the firm’s ability to work at maximum efficiency.
- Cost-effectiveness: In general, midsize firms are considered to charge lower rates than their Biglaw counterparts for similar work. Even if the rate isn’t substantially less, the value the client receives for the money is often perceived to be higher with the midsize firm.
Whether your competition is structured just like yours or is triple your size, you can still compete. It’s the quality of the work you do and the speed with which you deliver it that makes the difference in the eyes of the client.
Even if you don’t have the expertise to accommodate the client’s request immediately, technology exists to help you get up to speed quickly. Many successful firms commit to technology and embrace all of the advantages it offers. While there can be discomfort associated with the learning curve that comes with any new solution, the dividends it can pay in the long run are well worth it.
Not a David vs. Goliath scenario
With the knowledge of your attorneys and the right legal tech solutions, you can be in a position to bid for and win more matters than you probably thought possible. And, the time has never been better. Clients are actively seeking business partners that can deliver the best result for the best rate. Use technology to enhance your current strengths and build new ones so that you can take your firm to the heights you know it can achieve.
Learn more about what technology can do to help you compete for Biglaw business. Download a copy of our white paper, How Technology Levels the Playing Field for Midsize Law Firms.