Based on my research, during the past five years at least 90 different U.S. organizations published reports based on 190 surveys of U.S. law firms or law departments. That plethora of legal-industry surveys addressed a wide swath of management data. An analysis of the topics finds that compensation, e-discovery and outside counsel cost control were frequent topics, but all manner of other data inquiries were also carried out. The sponsors were primarily publishers, vendors of software or services, bar associations and consultants. At least half a dozen law firms and several trade groups also launched surveys.
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Law departments of the world, unite. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain with data analytics!

Your business is awash in numbers, along with software tools you can use to learn from them. You also have an important cadre of allies: Your key law firms have for years been stockpiling operational numbers about your work that will help you increase and demonstrate your department’s value to your company. But those firms need prodding to encourage them to mine their data for your benefit. That’s why you need to stay informed and involved.

The five imperatives below are the kinds of things you may want to say to your key firms. If you do, this manifesto gives you an easy way to deliver the message.

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