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Killing the Billable Hour in the Legal Sector? [PODCAST] – Jordan Furlong - LSE London Alumni & Friends
Welcome to Law 2.0, a podcast series where we talk to individuals looking to change the legal services and regulatory sector.

In this episode we speak to Jordan Furlong. Jordan is a legal market analyst and an award winning legal journalist, who has served as the editor of three leading Canadian legal periodicals: The Lawyers Weekly, National, and the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association Magazine. In 2007, Jordan launched an award-winning blog called Law21: Dispatches from a Legal Profession on the Brink.

In this podcast Jordan speaks to us about:
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may 2019 by JordanFurlong
Ep: 28 Jordan Furlong | Principal at Law21| The Future Legal Industry Landscape & Changing Client's Expectations | LinkedIn
I had the chance to sit down with Jordan Furlong, Principal at Law21, and ask him about a wide array of topics. Here are a few highlights of our conversation:

Perspective on the Big Four accounting firms
Continued developments and challenges law firms face
Geopolitics from a Canadian's perspective
His Alternative Legal Career
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march 2019 by JordanFurlong
25 Outstanding Legal Tech and Business of Law Predictions for 2019 | Aderant
20) Forecasting an “unremarkable” year

“2019 will be an unremarkable year in the business of law. ‘More of the same’ will be the rule:

Corporate clients will continue to complain about law firms but won’t really change their buying habits.
BigLaw firms will noisily roll out innovative projects but won’t change their profit and compensation models.
Amazing new legal technologies will be announced but won’t be incorporated into lawyers’ work habits.
Growing demand from clients will inflate law firm coffers and cool off most talk of impending upheaval.
A few law firms will grow stupendously rich; more young lawyers will take low-paying leveraged jobs.
Lawyers and judges will keep talking about access to justice while resisting new models that could address it.
Not much of a vision for the future, I know. But for once, I’d like to make a prediction about the legal market that I feel confident will come true.”
future  jf 
december 2018 by JordanFurlong
Better Late Than Never: Canadian Firms Are Finding Ways to Innovate | Legaltech News
“Ten years ago, bringing up innovation at a law firm would only have caused headaches,” says Jordan Furlong, a legal market analyst and consultant at Law 21. There was no market incentive driving law firms to innovate, he says.
jf  innovation 
december 2018 by JordanFurlong
New Partners Don't Know What to Expect After Promotion, Survey Shows | The American Lawyer
Of the 238 survey respondents who answered the question “What has disappointed you the most” about making partner, 71 were disappointed with compensation.

Asked to rate their satisfaction with various aspects of partnership, only 57.2 percent of new partners said they are satisfied or very satisfied with compensation.

One respondent said they were disappointed to be “treated as a glorified associate for purposes of compensation and bonus (and, thanks to the midyear associate raises, I’ll make less than most senior associates this year).”

Another said that buying shares, along with lower-than-expected pay and an end to performance bonuses, had placed a strain on finances. “It’s really depressing and demoralizing to get a promotion and then to have to put your family on a strict monthly budget,” that respondent said.

James Cotterman, a consultant at Altman Weil, said he’s not surprised by the number of new partners expressing a misalignment between their compensation expectations and reality.

“In general, career progression management is not a legal profession strength,” Cotterman says. New equity partners see higher pay, but they have to pay for their own benefits and self-employment taxes, as well as capital contributions.
jf  partners  firms 
november 2018 by JordanFurlong
Canadian Bar Association - When to expand your firm, when to outsource
For example, you may be able to expand without adding staff by outsourcing your routine, least-profitable work to lower-cost suppliers.

“In a lot of law firms, the lawyers tend to punch below their weight,” says Jordan Furlong, principal at the law firm management consultancy Law 21. “I go into law firms and I see partners essentially doing associate work, and associates doing work that could be done by paralegals or clerks.” In some cases, in fact, the work could even be done by clients themselves – having clients fill out forms online can cut staff costs without sacrificing service quality.

Another time to outsource is when a law firm is taking on a fixed-term project that will temporarily cause an increase in the workload, with no guarantee that this level of engagement will be sustained once the project has concluded. Outsourcing in this case will mean that there will be no need to downsize at the end of the project.
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october 2018 by JordanFurlong
The right leaders | Canadian Lawyer Mag
That requires the partners to buy in and for that to happen they need to be willing to be led by the managing partner or CEO, says Jordan Furlong, principle of Law 21 and legal market analyst and speaker based in Ottawa. Encouraging all the partners to forfeit a portion of their autonomy requires them to trust that person and accept guidance from them.

“I don’t think it matters that much what leadership structure you have in place. If the lawyers in the firm and the partners in particular don’t acquiesce at some level to being led and managed to some degree and some manner, it doesn’t matter what your leadership structure is,” he says.

Furlong sees that reluctance to be led as part of the culture of resistance in law firms to adopt the business model that sees a CEO at the top of the organization. At some point, the firm goes beyond simply being a bunch of lawyers working in close quarters, referring work back and forth and eating what they kill, but rather a business that requires a degree of business administration and management, he says.
jf  leadership  management 
september 2018 by JordanFurlong
Tech will only get us so far; you must first solve a ‘broken system,’ says legal forecaster Jordan…
Many entrenched in the legal innovation sector sometimes find themselves fighting an uphill battle. Indeed, how do you hack an industry to make it more efficient, and more accessible, when its business models discourage these very outcomes? Fortunately for us, legal market analyst Jordan Furlong has some advice for legal hackers, and it starts with asking the right questions.

In his latest book, Law Is A Buyer’s Market: Building A Client-First Law Firm, legal forecaster and former lawyer Jordan Furlong makes the case that lawyers and law firms, now faced with steep competition and decreased demand for their services, must change their approach and their understanding of themselves if they have any chance of defeating this existential threat.
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february 2018 by JordanFurlong
Rethinking Law-Firm Productivity Measurement
The traditional definition of “productivity” in law firms is seriously messed up. A few days before I sat down to write this piece, Joshua Lenon of Clio made the case much better than I could in a brief tweet storm on Twitter.
productivity  jf 
january 2018 by JordanFurlong
National | Law firm partnership: in name only? Lawyers can be fiercely independent. It's hindering their ability to change.
“I just don't think it's going to happen,” says Jordan Furlong, the Ottawa-based legal industry analyst. “The vast majority of law firms are incapable – not necessarily unwilling, though many are – of addressing the fundamental flaws at the heart of their model and making significant structural changes to address them.”

Furlong is not alone in doubting whether the old model can weather the combined forces of technology, globalization and a shift towards a buyer’s market for legal services. “What you’re seeing now is that the strains on the industry are revealing the issues that come with partnership,” says Janet Stanton, a partner at Adam Smith Esq, a New York-based consultancy for the legal industry. Stanton even challenges the notion that partnership was ever all that great a success. “Frankly, everybody was making a lot of money, so it didn’t really matter how they were organized,” she says.

Almost a decade has passed since the global financial crisis, and stagnant or declining profit margins are still a major concern for law firms understandably worried about lower earnings in the future. Meanwhile, they are losing market share to in-house legal departments, to new legal upstarts focused on technology and niche legal services and even to the Big Four accounting firms, who are at once boldly and surreptitiously making a push into the legal space.
partners  jf 
december 2017 by JordanFurlong
The Client’s Way-Start adapting your firm today to the buyer’s market in legal services | LegalBusinessWorld|Home
When I taught a law school course to upper-year students last year, I encouraged them to do something that was not part of the class and would not result in any credit, but that I felt sure would help them in their future careers. I advised them to go out and hire a lawyer.
It didn’t really matter what kind of lawyer or for what kind of matter. It could be as simple as getting a will made out — it’s never too early to check that off your to-do list, it’s a service that’s commonly available in most university towns, and as legal retainers go, it’s not that expensive or complicated.
But the point of the exercise was not to end up with a legal document. The point was to experience what it felt like to hire a lawyer. 
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december 2017 by JordanFurlong
#LegalTechLives with Jordan Furlong, consultant, author and legal market analyst
Jordan Furlong is a consultant, author, and legal market analyst who forecasts the impact of changing market conditions on lawyers and law firms. He has given dozens of presentations to audiences in the US, Canada, Europe and Australia over the past several years. Jordan is also a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management and a member of the Advisory Board of the American Bar Association’s Center for Innovation. He’s the author of Law Is A Buyer’s Market: Building a Client-First Law Firm, and he writes regularly about the changing legal market at his website, law21.ca.
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december 2017 by JordanFurlong
Think Tank: 20+ Legal Tech and Business of Law Predictions for 2018 - Part 1 - Aderant
2) “A Big 4 accounting firm will test the American legal profession’s ban against non-lawyer ownership by opening a law firm in the US practicing US law. This is going to happen eventually; might as well be 2018 as any other year.” – Jordan Furlong, Law21
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december 2017 by JordanFurlong
An Interview with Jordan Furlong – Colin S. Levy
I’m hard-pressed to see any way in which technology and analytics could be a hindrance to the evolution of law practice. They’re just tools, after all — means and methods by which a provider can amplify its productivity and enhance its effectiveness. You’re free not to use any tool that’s presented to you, so long as you’re prepared to compete with someone else who does — and who magically seems to increase their profit margins or market share by doing so.
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december 2017 by JordanFurlong

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