The debate over legal outsourcing is going mainstream, with a special report in yesterday’s Toronto Star (print copy only; Legal temps fill holes, cut costs).
The article focuses on Toronto-based LexLocom, a joint venture between Warren Bongard of legal recruiter ZSA and Scott Ewart. The services offered range from senior counsel with specialized expertise for specific projects, to low-end document review and due diligence work, and do it for about a third less than traditional firms.
Sue-Lynn Noel of Livingston International explains in the article why she used LexLocom’s services, when the boss of her in-house legal department suddenly left. LexLocom was more cost-effective than it was to either hire a new lawyer or outsource the additional legal work to a mainstream law firm.
The LexLocom website states,
There is no question the legal services industry is undergoing large and lasting change worldwide. In Canada, as in other countries, recent economic uncertainty has added new momentum to existing evolutionary changes that were already in motion. These changes take various shapes and forms depending on the sector of legal services industry and geography. Taken as a whole, the impacts will be significant.
They also speak an impressive list of languages: Arabic, Cantonese, Farsi, French, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese, Spanish, and Urdu.
Changes are not just related to in-house counsel. Both small and large firms experience surges and slow-downs in business, and outsourcing work might help create more efficient work-flows.
You can read more about LexLocom in the Fall 2010 edition of Canadian Corporate Counsel Association.