UK law firms are looking toward outsourcing

January 29, 2013 Leading UK law firms are looking to cut costs by outsourcing litigation support and document drafting services, according to new research.

Consultant firm Sweet & Maxwell surveyed the top 100 UK firms, finding that 22 per cent of respondent finance directors said that outsourcing was likely in 2013 – up five points from similar research last year.

‘Some legal sector watchers may be surprised at the number of finance directors considering outsourcing M&A due diligence work, as this is usually regarded as a core function,’ commented Teri Hawksworth, managing director of Thomson Reuters Sweet & Maxwell. ‘The fact that firms are more willing to outsource such an important service indicates that the level of trust is rising.’

Firms cited two primary reasons for considering outsourcing legal support services: cost-cutting and improving service quality. And it seems that industry concerns regarding potential downsides of outsourcing are receding: last year, 94 per cent of firms said losing control over service quality was a key concern, while this year the figure dropped to 79 per cent.

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