Legal departments can benchmark the strength of their billing guidelines using AI-enabled tools such as ELM Solutions’ LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer
Many corporate legal departments (CLDs) have outside counsel billing guidelines in place that dictate where and how a law firm is able to charge for its services. But while strong billing guidelines can help organizations save millions of dollars, a new installment of Wolters Kluwer ELM Solutions’ Legal Leaders Exchange Podcast explores why many of those parameters either go unenforced or open unintended loopholes.
Sharon Horozaniecki, Director of Operations for ELM Solutions’ AI-powered LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer spend management tool, and Michele Pratt, Associate Director for LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer, offer tips for drafting clear and concise billing guidelines that can serve as an effective roadmap for outside counsel. For example, successful billing guidelines will not only specify that administrative functions are non-billable, but also provide a comprehensive matrix of all the tasks that typically are billable. To help CLDs fortify their billing parameters, LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer includes an AI-enabled guideline benchmarking analysis service that allows clients to compare their outside counsel billing guidelines against those of industry peers.
“Legal departments want their firms to be compliant with outside counsel billing guidelines but are often unsure how to articulate that message,” Horozaniecki said. “There can also be large gaps in many legal department guidelines concerning tasks that are well-known in the industry to be non-billable.”
“Quality guidelines truly help to lay the groundwork for expectations when you are collaborating with a law firm,” said Pratt. “They are critical to building the strong relationship that law departments need to have with their outside counsel.”
ELM Solutions recently celebrated the five-year anniversary of LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer and the tool’s underlying AI algorithm, which has reviewed task-based billing patterns spanning 225 practice areas and 20 different industries. This diverse range of experience empowers LegalVIEW BillAnalyzer to create more nuanced and accurate outputs.