Organizations in a wide range of industries are tightening their purse strings. Rising interest rates paired with the over-hiring that occurred the past two years has caused many to take a pause and reevaluate their next steps. Among corporate legal teams of all sizes, hiring managers are implementing hiring freezes, and legal operations professionals are looking into how to reduce outside counsel spend—a classic refrain that everyone has come to expect.
Unfortunately, as a result, some organizations and law firms are having to make the hard decisions to lay off good legal talent. While these lawyers are hopeful to find new permanent roles, hiring freezes are keeping those roles just out of reach, leaving high-quality, experienced lawyers in the market for opportunities.
Hiring on a Budget
The challenge that always comes with a tightened budget is how to get the work done—just because the money is not there does not mean the workload went away. So, what is a legal team supposed to do?
At this point in the new year, corporate budgets have already been approved—including how much outside counsel spend is available. While the logical default to getting work done is to lean more heavily on law firm support, legal teams should consider using alternative legal service providers.
Alternative legal service providers often have a significantly lower price point than a law firm’s hourly rate. (Think up to 50% less per hour.) Consulting attorneys can come in and work as members of the legal department, addressing a range of matters based on the team’s needs. These lawyers handle all aspects of legal work, including research and review, and can also be hired on a part-time or project basis depending on the volume of the workload. Interim talent is also hireable under