Traditionally, ALSPs have been regarded as opportunities for labor arbitrage, typically in margin-compressed practice areas of limited complexity. Reduced quality is (wrongly) considered the tradeoff for low-cost labor. “The idea that ALSPs can only support ‘simple’ workstreams is just not true… we continue to test the boundaries on what our ALSPs are capable of… we are well beyond using them just for the routine work,” says Chris Chaffin, Vice President (Legal), Corporate Securities and M&A; Head of Legal Operations McAfee, a leading computer security software company. McAfee uses ALSPs to support contract management, M&A diligence, revenue related contract abstraction work, an ongoing, large-scale, legacy migration project and compliance reviews of marketing and product releases.

While the cost-reduction mandate is the impetus for rethinking the inputs, corporate clients are finding improved quality of outputs is achievable when you decide to re-engineer how legal services are delivered. The promise represents the holy grail of legal service innovation: cheaper, faster, and better.

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