lone tree in the Australian outback

An article in today's on-line edition of The Lawyer reports that Anglo-Australian firm Herbert Smith Freehills has started a pilot project by which its dispute resolution work in Australia, especially in the area of document review, is supported by its team in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The project is expected to finish in April 2014, at which time the firm will evaluate the results.

This "internal globalization" of support functions is an option that many multi-office law firms overlook or dismiss at too hard.

Management of research, client service, and other support functions -- whether across a state, across the country, or around the world -- can deliver tremendous savings in internal costs, improve productivity, and deliver a level of responsiveness that few single-office operations can match. It needs to be done with care, however, to assure a consistent level of quality and to avoid the risk of unnecessary duplication of effort and cost.

Walker Clark members have more than more than 25 years of hands-on experience in integrating multi-office client service operations across countries and continents and around the world. Some of us have even implemented and manages such initiatives ourselves. Our Comprehensive Management Systems Diagnostic is often a good first step to make a well-informed a decision about whether innovation such as Herber Smith Freehills is testing now would be right for your firm.

Norman Clark