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best practices for buying legal services and legal technology

Is 2021 the year we stop talking billable hours and start talking client value? (Deloitte)

  • 28 Apr 2021
  • 11:00 - 12:00
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Fixed fees, contingency fees, blended rates, capped fees, phased fees, the list goes on. The proliferation of different fee arrangements in the legal market is dizzying, but they all share one foundational component in common: the billable hour, or put another way, hours x rate.

Regardless how you agree fees with your law firms, more likely than not, the time-honored billable hour is at work somewhere behind the scenes. Yet with empowered clients increasingly flexing their muscles to benefit from seismic shifts in supply and demand due to COVID-19 and the progressive adoption of spend analytics and competitive bidding, there is greater interest than ever before in pricing legal work differently, and specifically, matching spend to client value achieved.

In value-based billing, value is ascribed to units reflecting desired client business outcomes, such as number of contracts concluded successfully, cases settled early, or litigation spend avoided. Challenges in negotiating and setting value-based fees include striking agreement on what constitutes a unit of value for different types of legal work, how it should be measured, and how assumptions and adjustment mechanisms can reasonably manage matters outside the provider’s control.

This session will explore emerging interest in value-based billing, provide practical examples of how it could be successfully used, where it is appropriate, and where not, and discuss whether it provides a viable tool in the toolkit as legal departments continue to look beyond the billable-hour.

This session is powered by Deloitte.