Growing dissatisfaction with the billable hour dominated a discussion last week between in-house counsel and lawyers from boutique firms, who used the issue to make their case that smaller firms are more efficient than big firms.

Questions posed from the floor of 130 in-house lawyers — members and guests of the Georgia chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel at its monthly meeting — revealed concerns about rates, hours billed, burnout, turnover and dissatisfaction with work at law firms.