What goes up must come down—and the economy is no exception. While it’s been 10 years since the last recession, the economy is due for a downturn at some point in the future. So how can legal departments make sure they are fully operational during tough economic times?
Robert Graff, a partner at Major, Lindsey & Africa, said besides from implementing cost savings through the use of legal operations and legal technology, they must also be able to articulate why lawyers should not be laid off.
“I think in a recession CFOs get fixated on head count,” Graff said.
He said in-house lawyers are delivering legal services at a wholesale price. Whereas, if a company eliminates lawyers, they will be forced to go to firms.
“You’ve just doubled or tripled the price of your legal bill because then you do have to go out to a law firm to get the work done and you’re going to pay a much higher price,” Graff said.
He said with a recession the legal work won’t cost any less.
“That legal work is not going away,” Graff explained. “Smarter GCs can make that argument back to the CFOs.”