Legal Process Outsourcing, Staffing and eDiscovery

Author

Chuck Kellner

Charles Kellner helps attorneys to work with electronically stored information that may be used as evidence in litigations and government investigations. Chuck's experience is hands-on in strategy, tactics, budgeting, cost containment, project planning, consulting, sales engineering, management, and operations. Specialties include litigation hold and litigation response planning, litigation support and cost recovery in law firms and law departments.

Legal Staffing

Paralegals: Paralegals are in a hot job market! The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says “Employment of paralegals and legal assistants is projected to grow 15 percent from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the average for all occupations. Formally trained paralegals with strong computer and database management skills should have the best job prospects.”(September 2018).  Look to see if your state has certification requirements. 

Contract Attorneys: We need you! We ALL need you, in litigation, consulting, corporate law departments, law firms and dot orgs. This market continues to grow through 2019 in litigation, data privacy, contracts, compliance, and other specialties as law firms test their levels of permanent staffing and companies seek to grow their in-house capability without necessarily adding to permanent headcount. Call your recruiter!

Legal Tech: Technology continues to advance and reshape the legal industry. Our recruiters are very busy in Legal Tech. We see the trends continuing upward for 2019. Law firms and corporate law departments continue with strong demand in these areas:

  • Executive-level leaders (chief information officers, chief technology officers, chief knowledge officers)
  • Help desk and desktop support personnel
  • Application developers
  • Applications support personnel and analysts
  • Network and systems engineers
  • Document management system (DMS) specialists
  • SharePoint administrators and developers
  • eDiscovery professionals
  • Legal support personnel
  • SQL DBAs
  • Legal technology trainers

In-House Lawyers: This is the fastest-growing segment for lawyers in the market for jobs. Growth in lawyer staffing is about the same as U.S. job growth overall, but we see increasing demand for In-House attorneys. Many companies want the in-house capability for their most critical and strategic needs. As you know, they offer great pay, great benefits, and many lifestyle advantages. If you have specialties in contracts, privacy, financial services, insurance, healthcare, international transactions, or litigation, you’re hot! 

Professional Services and SaaS 

eDiscovery Services:  eDiscoveryis growing faster in 2019 than the overall cloud and SaaS markets generally. According to a Forbes report last fall, overall cloud services expect more than 17% growth in 2019, as companies (including law firms) seek to move out of expensive and static local infrastructure. They are moving historical. Other studies predict CAGR(Compound Annual Growth) at over 25% for the SaaS portion of this market. Professional Services generally are one of the hottest areas of growth nationally, (behind mining and construction). Based on the demand we have with our clients, we expect to seeeDiscovery Services on steroids in 2019. Biggest areas of growth are Relativity, O365 eDiscovery services, RelativityOne, and integrations with O365. Also topping the lists are Litigation Response Planning and legal hold solutions.

Data Intelligence, Analytics and AI: Explosive growth continues in 2019 for tools and services the legal industry uses to speed workflows and to manage costs. Legal enterprises are using big-data tools on data sets in timekeeping, billing, and accounting better to estimate the time and cost of projects and to evaluate return on investment. For litigations and investigations, we see better and faster tools are coming online to enhance decision-making with machine learning. We predict that the Technology Assisted Review (TAR 1.0, 2.0 3.0 etc.) monikers will blur together with more refined workflows that contain multimodal and hybrid approaches. True (or truer) AI will come on line in 2019 to assist litigations, investigations, and Information Risk Management.

Mergers & Acquisitions: Corporate consolidations in 2018 reached record proportions. Our staffing and services are in great demand for corporate compliance reviews, contract analysis, due diligence data collections and assessments, and attorney review for M&A and second requests. Though government challenges resulting in Second Requests are down from two years ago, the need for M&AProfessional Services and SaaS is strong and growing, due to the growth in number of corporate combinations.

Contract Management and CLMS: With 2018 being likely a historical record year for M&A, the resulting combinations have given us a growing market in post-combination integrations. Among the fastest growing is the need to normalize the new organization’s body of contracts. These companies have between a thousand contracts a year to tens of thousands of contracts per month that scream for automated controls in CLMS (Contract Lifecycle ManagementSystems). We see continuing strong demand to specify and install these systems and to analyze and normalize and manage the content and lifecycle of contracts among acquired organizations, geographic locations and languages.

3 Areas of Growth:

Information Risk Management and Cybersecurity: These are the “new black”, the two hottest areas of siloed professional services for 2019. They transform Information Governance with a new sense of urgency based on the risks of cyber attack and theft of PII. Companies of every size need documented, defensible and repeatable processes for document creation, information management, and retention. We predict higher demand for updated and streamlined Records Retention and Records Management policies that meet many industries’ more stringent requirements for compliance and privacy.

Privacy Assessments: While GDPR “readiness” was last year’s news, active GDPR compliance assessment is decidedly urgent and on the rise. Our EU and multinational clients are digging into GDPR in day to day operations and practice. The ability to assess and isolate sources of personal information is paramount. The need efficiently to conduct Data Subject Access Requests (DSAR) will continue to rise.  As we approach the January 1, 2020 effective date for the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), our U.S.-based colleagues will need these services too!

Defensible Deletion: We are seeing a huge uptick in the demand for defensible deletion of ESI, backup archives, and paper document repositories. The demand is a byproduct of litigation response planning, information governance, information risk management, and domestic and international privacy concerns. Corporate financial and risk managers and CIOs are looking for ways to trim their information stores for cost savings and risk management.

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