JordanFurlong + jf   327

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:
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
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.
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.
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. 
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,
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
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.
december 2017 by JordanFurlong
Welcome to the 2017 ABA Journal Web 100
hen the Journal launched the first Blawg 100 in 2007, podcasts, Twitter and smartphones as we know them existed. But they were in a nascent stage. (By our second Blawg 100, we were highlighting podcasts and sharing bloggers’ Twitter handles.)

But from now on, other digital media will share the spotlight with legal blogs—and we’re leaving the portal open to highlight new web platforms that are not yet imagined. 

Our inaugural year of this feature honors 50 blogs (and
november 2017 by JordanFurlong
Trending Resources: 8 Progressive HR Practices for the Modern Law Firm | Legal Management
s attorneys and staff increasingly become a priority, firms are modernizing their human resources practices to attract and retain top talent.

“It is absolutely integral that law firms take their human resources as seriously as possible,” says Jordan Furlong, Principal of Law21. “I’m not sure that law firms have traditionally appreciated that as much as they do now.”

Below are eight progressive human resources practices being adopted within law firms.

One-size-fits-all training is no longer meeting the demands of diverse associate classes, who come to firms with wide ranges of life experiences. “Law firms are taking their human development or their human management more seriously than they have in the past, which is unquestionably a good thing,” says Furlong.
jf  hr 
november 2017 by JordanFurlong
Canada: Trading places | Feature | Law Society Gazette
Local legal knowledge and expertise are certainly in demand, says Jordan Furlong, Ottawa-based legal market consultant with Law21, as Canada is increasingly seen as a ‘rock of political and economic stability’ compared with its southern neighbour. And it is ‘starting to punch above its weight’ in new areas such as biotechnology and AI startups.

Huge uncertainty internally over president Donald Trump’s move to redraw the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) between the US, Canada and Mexico in the US’s favour is also driving demand for legal advice on the potential implications.

Given that Canada and the US share the biggest single trading partnership in the world, Trump’s attack will require skilful handling by Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau and his government. Trudeau is currently going through a rocky patch in the polls over who will benefit from proposed tax changes, and the failure of his finance minister to have an appropriate blind trust for his assets.

But he may find support from within the US itself. As financial journalist Charles Wallace commented in Forbes magazine: ‘While I’m all for countering disruptive trade practices, attacking Canada in this way seems increasingly like a big bully poking his finger in the little kid’s eye. In the end, we wind up hurting American consumers and making our closest trade partner – it takes more US exports than any other country – feel angry and betrayed. Is that smart politics?’
november 2017 by JordanFurlong
Millennials Won't Destroy Your Law Firm. Can They Save It? | The American Lawyer
aw firm leaders have followed two main approaches to dealing with millennial employees, said Jordan Furlong, a legal industry analyst at Law 21. The first way is simply making them fit into the traditional law firm model, like a square peg in a round hole. The results, he said: “spectacularly unsuccessful.”

The alternative, Furlong said, is accepting millennials for who they are and working with their tendencies and preferences, instead of against them.

“What’s becoming more apparent to me is that law firms need millennial lawyers a lot more than millennials need the law firms,” Furlong said. “They might not think they do, but every day, we get closer to an entire generation of rainmakers and relationship partners and corner-office heavyweights shifting into retirement.”
jf  generations 
october 2017 by JordanFurlong
Legal job outlook murky for 2017 - The Lawyer's Daily
However, Jordan Furlong, principal at Law21 and analyst of the global legal market, isn’t as optimistic about 2017. He paints a grimmer picture, maintaining that companies remain under financial pressure and are spending less, while law firms are looking to cut costs.

Mid- and large-scale businesses don’t have as much money and their legal departments are being asked to do more with less, so lawyers that serve those clients are going to be under pressure, he says.

“If I’m in the legal profession, I would expect that there’s going to be fewer dollars directed my way and if I’m an individual lawyer or law firm my focus should be on how to get my share or more than my share of the fewer dollars that are going to be in circulation.”

Furlong says company law departments are keeping more work to themselves, rather than sending it to outside counsel, unless it requires a particular specialization or top-notch expertise.

“They’re basically saying, ‘Look, if it’s basic straightforward stuff, we’ll keep it. I’m not sending straightforward, routine work out to a law firm to get charged $300 an hour when I can hire someone to do that for a fraction of the cost internally.’ ”
july 2017 by JordanFurlong
Podcast #124: The Client-First Future of Law Practice, with Jordan Furlong
In this episode, Jordan Furlong explains why law has become a “buyers market” and how lawyers can take advantage of the opportunities presented by that market by becoming client-centered law practices. You can read more in Jordan’s book, Law Is a Buyer’s Market: Building A Client-First Law Firm, available as a paperback and for Kindle.
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Law firm strategy in a buyer’s market - Remaking Law Firms
“Strategy” is a widely used and frequently misunderstood term in law firms. Ask most lawyers about their firm’s strategy, and they’ll think back to that time when the firm’s leadership team took several meetings and at least one offsite retreat to come up with a grand vision for the firm, eventually expressed in a handsome bound document that now occupies the rarely accessed top shelf in their office. (Editor: The truth of Jordan’s observation is not limited law firms.)
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Lawyer proofing law firms & building stronger enterprises
Peter, Natalie, and Jordan discuss Jordan’s first book, Law is a Buyer’s Market: Building a Client-First Law Firm.  They dive deep into the business of law, law firm (mis)management, lawyer substitutes, and how law firms need to change to meet and manage the demands of the shifting legal marketplace.
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
NHBA - Bar News Issue
It was not the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs, it was the resulting climate change. They did not die in an instant but over time; author Jordan Furlong thinks the same about law firms. They won’t die in an instant, but if they do not recognize the change in the business climate, then they will eventually go the way of the T-Rex.
jf  book 
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Podcast: Is Law Really A Buyer’s Market? And If So, Now What? - Jim Calloway's Law Practice Tips Blog
Our podcast Is Law Really A Buyer’s Market? And If So, Now What? is quite exceptional if I do say so myself. Of course exceptional is much easier to accomplish when your podcast guest is an esteemed expert like Jordan Furlong discussing an important topic that is near and near to his heart.
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Podcast #124: The Client-First Future of Law Practice, with Jordan Furlong
In this episode, Jordan Furlong explains why law has become a “buyers market” and how lawyers can take advantage of the opportunities presented by that market by becoming client-centered law practices. You can read more in Jordan’s book, Law Is a Buyer’s Market: Building A Client-First Law Firm, available as a paperback and for Kindle.
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Ask Your Clients to Help You Improve Your Client Experience
In a recent email, the president of The Atlantic Monthly, Bob Cohn, sent subscribers a note about the magazine’s revamped website. Nothing new there—good publications refresh their online presence regularly—but the process Cohn described by which his team gathered data for the change caught my attention:
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Is your Law Firm Fulfilling its Purpose? – Slaw
The whole reason we’re in business, folks, is to meet our clients’ needs. It is literally, the single most important thing we do. Every time a client hires your firm to do something, you create and send out a retainer document that describes in detail what those needs are and what you’re charging the client to do about it. Do you systematically look back on that document and ask if the client received what you promised therein? If not, I’d like to suggest that you start.
june 2017 by JordanFurlong
Flexible legal services from Lawyers on Demand - The Rise of the Millennial Lawyer: 14 ways a generation is changing the rules | LOD
As we head towards the 2020s, we are in a transition between generations of legal leadership – the Boomers giving way to the Millennials. This means a huge shift in attitudes about how law is purchased and provided. The Millennial lawyer is now the emerging law firm partner or GC, accustomed to working in a digitally open world where personalisation, choice and transparency are the norm.
may 2017 by JordanFurlong
Furlong Book a Must-Read for Law Firm Leaders | Amazing Firms, Amazing Practices
Jordan Furlong has been a professional colleague and close friend for many years. His passion for understanding the legal profession is unmatched. Perhaps that’s why he is in demand to speak to prestigious organizations and firms throughout the world.
april 2017 by JordanFurlong
Why Your Law Firm Must Stand Out From The Crowd – LawStrat
Other clients are looking for a firm that specializes in their particular need, which offers an advantage to niche players who have decided to do a very small number of narrowly focused things and do them very well. Niche specialization offers the added advantage of narrowing your playing field and reducing (sometimes to zero) the number of firms you’re up against.
So one of your first orders of business, when designing a Competitive Strategy for your firm, is to understand the drivers behind your clients’ (and your prospects’) legal services buying decisions. Why do they purchase services from the vendors they use? How important are the deciding factors, and in what priority order are they considered? If you don’t know the answers to these questions, call up your clients and ask them.
jf  clients' 
april 2017 by JordanFurlong
Interview: Jordan Furlong, Legal Market Analyst and Forecaster – LawStrat
What matters, I think, is that these are “legal service providers.” That they’re online makes little difference, except insofar as a virtual platform obviously increases their reach and convenience to clients while lowering their costs. But lawyers and law firms should look past “online” and recognise that these are, for the most part, reliable, competent options for clients to access solutions to their legal needs. Law firms should emulate them where feasible, ally with them where appropriate, and simply buy them out where a value proposition is clear. But ignoring these providers, or denigrating them, is just about the worst thing firms can do. Clients are taking these providers seriously, and that should be all the motivation law firms require to do the same themselves.
jf  robo  marketing 
april 2017 by JordanFurlong
WHY Should You Care About AI? — Flip Cat Consulting
The biggest mistake that incumbents in every industry make -- every single industry, and law is absolutely no exception -- is saying, “My customers won’t want that.” Never assume your customers or clients won’t be interested in something that’s faster than you and cheaper than you. Never assume that something faster and cheaper than you can’t also be as good as you, or maybe even better. And never assume that “quality” --  which is what I hear most lawyers say is their unbeatable advantage -- is as important to your clients as you think it is. Most of your clients don’t want “the best.” They want “good enough.” 
jf  robo  clients  competition 
april 2017 by JordanFurlong
Choosing your law firm's optimal markets
I think many law firms historically acquired their clients first and their markets second. Somewhere early in a firm’s genesis, one of its lawyers landed a client and performed the assigned tasks well; impressed, that client hired the lawyer again and recommended the lawyer to a similar client, which also retained the lawyer, and more followed.
jf  book  markets 
april 2017 by JordanFurlong
Thursday Thinkpiece: Jordan Furlong’s 3 Key Components of a Client Strategy – Slaw
1. Client intelligence
Recall the purpose of our modern law firm from Chapter 7: “To serve the interests of clients in our chosen markets by addressing their legal challenges and opportunities, so that those clients can achieve their objectives.”
What are those interests? What are those objectives? Law firms learn the answers to these questions through the collection and maintenance of intelligence. Your firm’s client strategy hinges on knowing your buyers’ identity, circumstances, and goals, so that you can best anticipate and respond to their needs
jf  book 
april 2017 by JordanFurlong
Do you really know why your law firm has partners?
I know that might be a grotesque prospect for some of you. But just for the purposes of this column, let’s imagine that your law firm was allowed to receive a significant capital injection from, say, a benevolent and highly ethical trust fund that sought only market-average annual returns on its investment and pledged never to intervene in the firm’s operations.
jf  partners 
april 2017 by JordanFurlong
On the Growing Share of Legal Spend that’s NOT Going to Law Firms | Legal Executive Institute
That potential $6.4 billion growth in spending on non-firm outside vendors is a nice source of revenue for lots of new players to go after. And there are a lot of new players to go after it. Jordan Furlong has one of the best inventories in a much-cited post, An Incomplete Inventory of NewLaw, that appeared on his blog, Law21.
march 2017 by JordanFurlong
Creating an Online Publishing Strategy for Law Firms
Creating an Online Publishing Strategy for Law Firms

ISBN: 9781634254182
Jordan Furlong
Steve Matthews
ISBN: 978-1-63425-418-2

Product Code: 5110808

2017, 106 pages, 6x9
jf  book 
march 2017 by JordanFurlong
Creating an Online Publishing Strategy for Law Firms (Book Review)
“Advertising is telling the world you’re a rock star. Content marketing is showing the world that you are one.”
The authors included the above Robert Rose quote on page 4 of Creating an Online Publishing Strategy for Law Firms, a new ABA Law Practice Division book by Jordan Furlong and Steve Matthews, and I was hooked. Admittedly, they were preaching to the choir.
Excuse my indulgence for a minute, but I appreciate this book for several reasons:
It’s in my wheelhouse. My entire history in legal marketing has been about content. It worked for me when I went on my own and I’ve seen it work for countless others. It just works.
The book is less than 100 pages. That’s a big deal for today’s attention-deficit readers. It echoes one of my favorite tenants of creating content: write with empathy for your audience. Be concise and make every word count.
jf  book 
march 2017 by JordanFurlong
Creating an Online Publishing Strategy for Law Firms - Law Technology Today
Law firm publishing efforts that are divorced from the firm’s business development strategy, or that take place within a firm that has no strategy at all, are in serious trouble right from the start. They might satisfy some lawyer’s itch to write, or look nice on a marketing plan, but they won’t deliver meaningful results.
february 2017 by JordanFurlong
Big law is having its Uber moment -
Though Alarie believes Tax Foresight is the first tool of its kind on the market, Blue J Legal is far from the only company employing AI to change the way lawyers work. Jordan Furlong, an Ottawa-based consultant and legal analyst at Law21, says Toronto has become a hub of activity for AI-based legal tech startups, which isn’t surprising since Toronto, along with Montreal, has also emerged as a global ground zero for AI research in general. Other firms applying AI technologies to the law include Ross Intelligence, which scours databases to answer legal questions, and Kira Systems, which brings machine learning to contract analysis.
jf  robolawyer 
january 2017 by JordanFurlong
Top Canadian Firm Scoops Up E-Discovery Shop | The American Lawyer
“I don’t get the sense that it’s an especially adversarial or voracious relationship between the two,” said Jordan Furlong of Ottawa-based legal consultancy Law21. “My sense is that they’re not really in open war right now.”
jf  competition 
january 2017 by JordanFurlong
David Bilinsky - Thoughtful Legal Management
I admit, this might be wishful thinking. But I have a feeling that 2017 will turn out to be the year we reach a tipping point in the campaign to improve access to justice. I’m now encountering A2J in many different contexts outside the legal profession — in the mainstream press, at technology conferences, and among governments, think tanks, policymakers and corporations. It looks to me like access to justice, about which the legal profession has said a great deal but accomplished relatively little over the past few decades, has finally breached the consciousness of society at large.

This may prove to be a double-edged sword for lawyers. On the positive side, bringing many more resources and many different and diverse perspectives to the A2J problem can only accelerate us towards a solution. On the negative side, as Lawyerist’s Sam Glover pointed out a few years back, we can close the access-to-justice gap, but lawyers aren’t going to like it.

It is very clear to people outside the legal profession that lawyers are demonstrably unable or unwilling to make adjustments to their business model that would make their services more affordable to more people. It’s equally clear to these observers that the legal profession intends to indefinitely maintain barriers against “non-lawyer” service providers who could help enable more access to legal services. Whatever merits these positions might have when viewed from within the profession, I can assure you they have almost no traction outside it.

Access to justice is about to become a mainstream social issue. When it does, it will leave the orbit of the legal profession, and along with it will go the profession’s ability to dictate or even influence the solutions that are eventually found. Those solutions will have consequences for lawyers, both intended and unintended, and not all of them will be good. But I suspect our window of opportunity to do much about that, a window that has been open for many years, is finally going to close.
december 2016 by JordanFurlong
Lexpert ® | Design Thinking: Try, Try Again
“Law firms, if we’re being honest, tend to be centred on the lawyer rather than the client,” says Jordan Furlong, a legal market analyst and principal with Law21 in Ottawa. “The workflow, the billing and pricing, the overall accessibility of law firms, are all built around the needs and conveniences of lawyers.” A law firm’s users are its clients, and the experiences of those users constitute the firm’s design. This presents a problem for lawyers, says Furlong, because “few lawyers ever go out and hire a law firm. They just find someone else in their own firm, or they look up a friend or classmate from law school, and get them to do the work.”

But no lawyer, says Furlong, hires his or her firm from the outside, the way a client would. “Have you ever tried to use your own law firm for a legal service? What’s that experience like? Hardly any lawyer can answer that.” Furlong suggests bringing in some of your firm’s “users” for a face-to-face meeting and asking them about their experience with the firm — not just the outcome they achieved, but the process by which the outcome was reached. What worked well, and what didn’t?
jf  design  firms  innovation 
october 2016 by JordanFurlong
6 Takeaways from Norton Rose’s Acquisition of Bull Housser | Big Law Business
Norton Rose has now finished its Canadian expansion, which began six years ago when Ogilvy Renault threw in its lot with the British multinational on June 1, 2011. “Certainly within Canada, we have completed our jigsaw puzzle right now,” Norton Rose’s Canadian head of infrastructure, mining and commodities told the Vancouver Sun. And a pretty big puzzle it is: Norton Rose now has a strong presence in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal, the four cities that really matter for a national law firm in Canada. (Norton Rose also has an office in the national capital of Ottawa, which is kind of the Fifth Beatle of Canadian metropoli, as well as in Quebec City). That’s a larger presence than many homegrown Canadian nationals. Whatever else about Norton Rose’s other global interests, they are all-in on Canada, where they’ve earned one of the country’s top legal brands in a remarkably short period of time.
september 2016 by JordanFurlong
Jordan Furlong: AI Should Be Helping Lawyers Move Up The Value Chain – artificial lawyer
AI should be helping lawyers move up the value chain by removing from their dockets the most mindless and mundane tasks that have consumed so many billable hours over the last few decades. Lawyers who have great skills in analysis, judgment, advocacy, risk assessment, or risk prevention will benefit by escaping the billable demands of drone work and developing higher-priced, higher-value offerings that are not subject to automation or algorithm. Lawyers who don’t have these skills need to learn them. And that’s why every law school, bar admission program, and CLE provider in the world should be gearing their curricula to building these skills immediately.
jf  robolawyer 
august 2016 by JordanFurlong
Young Quebec lawyers face bleak prospects
But Jordan Furlong, an Ottawa-based lawyer, analyst and consultant, believes that the Young Bar’s recommendation to impose quotas coupled with its call to be more transparent over job prospects is “really designed to thin the herd,” and could very easily be interpreted as protectionism. He also points out that studies indicate that approximately 85 per cent of potential legal needs are unfilled in Canada, a finding that the Young Bar’s report alludes to as well. “So you can make the case to say that there aren’t enough lawyer jobs,” said Furlong. “What we do need are lawyers who are trained, equipped and educated in ways to meet that unmet demand and serve that untapped market. So there is a disconnect with the idea that there are too many lawyers because some of them can’t find jobs or there are too many lawyers because there is heavy price competition.”
jf  schools  admission 
july 2016 by JordanFurlong
Dentons, Referral Industry Square Off Ahead of New Network Launch | The American Lawyer
The fact that there are so many networks out there “suggests there’s value that’s being delivered,” said Ottawa-based consultant Jordan Furlong. Denton’s free membership and technological platform “are certainly attractive features, but for a firm thinking about leaving a network to join Denton’s network, it will come down to ‘how well do I know the firms in the NextLaw network?’”
networks  jf 
june 2016 by JordanFurlong
7 best legal posts in 7+ years of LexisNexis social media - LexTalk
Afraid to be a leading lawyer? The tepid analyst vs. the courageous advisor (Jordan Furlong)

Around 2500 blogs/articles … that’s roughly the number of items I read each year. And I read everything … at least in part. A lot of good writing, but often variations on similar themes/topics. Once in a while, I stumble upon something novel and ingenious, like this article by Jordan Furlong.
june 2016 by JordanFurlong
What Makes Uber Tick (and What Lawyers Can Learn from It)
What Makes Uber Tick (and What Lawyers Can Learn from It)
june 2016 by JordanFurlong
CBA AB - Legal Service Delivery
The market for legal services in Canada is changing, in ways that not every lawyer will like and that no one in the legal profession can control. 
may 2016 by JordanFurlong
Lexpert ® | Lawyers: Accountants are eating your lunch
A couple of years ago, I was introduced to a law student who was visiting Canada from France. In the course of our conversation, I was encouraged to ask her to name the largest law firm in her country. Her reply: “Ernst & Young.”
jf  accountants 
april 2016 by JordanFurlong
What's behind the breakneck pace of law firm mergers? | Logikcull Blog
While the turmoil has caught some off guard, others say the seeds of upheaval were sewn long ago. Among those is Jordan Furlong, an Ottawa-based attorney, change management consultant and close watcher of industry tumult he’s documented for years at Law21. In most acquisitions, he says, there are common threads: failure to plan for the future and a “bailout” mentality.
march 2016 by JordanFurlong
Podcast #58: Preparing for the Future of Law Practice, with Jordan Furlong
Jordan Furlong talks about the changes in store for the legal industry over the next 5-15 years, and what those changes mean for lawyers who will be practicing during (and after) them.
march 2016 by JordanFurlong
Incubator of Tomorrow’s Tech, Suffolk Law Program Revolutionizes Legal Access | Legaltech News
“Middle-class households deserve to receive the same quality of legal services and products as any Fortune 500 company, and technology’s real power in this respect is to upgrade and maintain high standards of product and service quality,” he added. “So it’s not just learning how to deliver low-priced legal services; it’s also about ensuring that these more accessible services are just as high-quality, reliable and useful as high-priced services elsewhere.
schools  jf  access  it 
february 2016 by JordanFurlong
Law firm metrics ‘not much use to clients’
“What's interesting is that all these measures are employed by law firms in what amounts to preening contests among themselves to determine which is the ‘best’ firm, but they're not much use to clients,” Mr Furlong told Lawyers Weekly.

Profit per partner is the most prominent metric used to compare firms in Australia and the US, but is not used in Canada, where Mr Furlong is based.

Law firms typically submit profit per partner figures to independent bodies or media outlets that collate and publish the information on a yearly basis.
metrics  jf 
january 2016 by JordanFurlong
Consolidation is Hitting the Canadian Legal Market | Big Law Business
Anytime an American law firm announces a move into Canada, the locals sit up and take notice. When two American firms show up on the same day — one in the NewLaw space and the other in, well, OldLaw — then people like me start writing analyses like this, because something is definitely up.
jf  global 
january 2016 by JordanFurlong
David Bilinsky - Thoughtful Legal Management
We’ll look back at 2016 as a turning point for legal regulation in Canada. “Non-lawyer” ownership of law firms was stymied in 2015, but this year will bring us something profoundly more important: proactive, principle-based, entity regulation of legal services. Starting with Nova Scotia and the Prairie provinces, law societies will shift the regulatory focus away from rules of conduct and lawyer misbehaviour and towards “ethical infrastructure” and enterprise-level responsibility for maintaining and improving a regulatory culture. This will have an enormous influence on how lawyers practice, how law firms manage, how law schools teach and how law societies regulate. ABS would have affected maybe 1 lawyer in 100; entity-based regulation will affect every single lawyer in private practice.
december 2015 by JordanFurlong
Summer hiring on Bay Street has another good year | Precedent Magazine
These are not trivial investments,” says Jordan Furlong, a legal consultant at Edge International. “These are 278 people who, even for four months in the summer, are going to make a good wage. Firms clearly think this is the best way to recruit and train future lawyers.”
december 2015 by JordanFurlong
[no title]
Have We Gone TFARR, or Not Far
Enough? The Search for Lawyer
Competence Standards
jf  competence 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
Lawyers On Demand Thought Leadership Reports — Who we are | LOD
Find out why lawyers should think like baristas and counsel like doctors… Award-winning legal consultant Jordan Furlong is back for a third report, this time about what makes a stand-out lawyer.  Do you agree with his list of 8 ‘super skills’?  Download the report and let us know.
jf  skills 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
UX and the Future of Law Firm Branding – Law Firm Web Strategy
In reality, of course, law firms have very little control over their brand. Partly, this is because law firms have almost no mechanisms for quality control and no power to enforce protocols for lawyers’ behaviours and relationships with clients. A law firm that tries to force a partner to strictly follow a specified regimen when performing work and communicating with clients will usually be down one partner in short order. As for “expertise,” most clients assume their lawyers have it, and very few know or care enough to distinguish the fine gradients of expertise that separate one lawyer from another — and in any event, with partner movement rampant among firms, expertise has become mobile to the point of peripatetic, and therefore an unreliable foundation for a brand.
jf  branding  design  ux  marketing 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
How will artificial intelligence affect the legal profession in the next decade? | Faculty of Law
FURLONG: I think we’re going to see the adoption of AI in the legal market, more broadly speaking, rather than in the legal profession for quite some time to come. Lawyers are sort of naturally disinclined, for cultural reasons, to disrupt the way they work and go about their jobs. Technology tends to generate that aversion.
robolawyer  jf 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
Principle, Not Politics – Slaw
I submit that if we approached the issue from this perspective, we could do away with much of the defensiveness and rancour to which we’ve subjected ourselves lately. We could combine the efforts of well-meaning people on all sides and focus our collective attention on improving the position of the end users of our services. That seems to me the direction in which the Working Group is headed, and if so, I am definitely on board.
jf  regulation  competition 
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
The Relevant Lawyer – new Book from ABA Publishing – Slaw
The Relevant Lawyer: Reimagining the Future of the Legal Profession
november 2015 by JordanFurlong
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