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The GCs have spoken. And already, their outside counsel have heard a “wake-up call” and a “warning bell” about impending change that could shake up competition among law firms.

A group of 25 general counsel from major companies on Tuesday announced a plan to share and analyze data on the law firms they use and the outcomes they achieve, with the goal of figuring out what types of firms and billing arrangements work best.

The “GC Thought Leaders Experiment” will use data to answer questions such as: How do the most pedigreed global firms perform relative to others? Do more expensive partners tend to receive higher performance scores than lower-priced peers? Do competitive bids negatively impact quality?

For firms that have built their business by presuming answers to those questions, the potential for the sand to shift underneath them will cause anxiety. Others, confident they’ve answered these questions correctly, see opportunity.


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