|[January 30, 2013]
Ethics and Compliance Leads Among Pressing Issues for Chief Legal Officers, According to ACC CLO Survey
WASHINGTON --(Business Wire)--
of Corporate Counsel (ACC), a global bar association representing
more than 30,000 in-house counsel, recently released the largest global
survey of the most pressing issues and challenges facing chief legal
officers in corporate legal departments around the world.
Chief Legal Officers (CLO) 2013 Survey received insight from more
than 1,100 heads of corporate legal departments from 36 countries on the
issues keeping them up at night, business priorities, career
satisfaction and trends. Issues covered in the survey also included law
department budget and staff changes, challenges involving pro bono
initiatives and how CLOs evaluate the success and effectiveness of their
Survey respondents were asked to evaluate the importance of issues in
law over the past 12 months and anticipate what will continue to be
relevant in the upcoming year. Chief among the top issues facing CLOs
today is ethics and compliance, followed closely by regulatory or
governmental changes and information privacy.
Over the past 12 months, the majority (78%) of respondents spent most of
their time advising C-Suite executives and participating in strategic
"Fulfilling the dual role of business executive and legal advisor is the
new normal for chief legal officers today," said ACC President & CEO, Veta
T. Richardson. "From reducing outside legal costs to keeping
apprised of legal developments that may impact business decisions in an
increasingly aggressive regulatory environment, the ACC CLO Survey shows
that in-house counsel are squarely positioned in the hot seat."
To measure the efectiveness and efficiency of law departments, another
trend uncovered in the survey was the focus on outside legal spending by
both private and public law departments.
"In-house and outside counsel are redefining value in the management of
legal costs, and we're seeing clear trends pointing to its continued
prevalence and growth," added Richardson (News - Alert). "Therefore, it's not
surprising that reducing legal costs is one of the top five business
priorities keeping CLOs up at night."
Findings also revealed other trends, including the increase in hiring
and the use of contract lawyers, which received a 59% increase over last
year. However, the level of job satisfaction decreased from 92% in 2011
to 81% in 2012.
Other significant findings from the survey:
Pro bono programs are not prevalent among the law departments of
survey respondents; primarily due to the fact that respondents'
departments were too small and the legal staff was stretched too thin.
CLOs also cited issues with the right to practice as one of the
reasons corporate law departments do not participate in pro bono
Only 11% of CLOs surveyed made staff cuts over the past year unrelated
to performance; 32% of staff cuts were in-house lawyers.
55% of the CLOs surveyed reported law department budget changes over
the past 12 months, and in the year ahead.
30% of the CLOs surveyed plan to increase their law department budgets.
About the ACC CLO Survey: The ACC Chief Legal Officer Survey
is the largest survey of the heads of corporate legal departments from
around the world. Released annually, it provides useful data for
corporate legal departments, law firms, and industry partners such as
recruiters and litigation support providers. Issues covered in the
survey include: law department demographics and staffing, the changing
role of the CLO, managing outside counsel and costs and emerging trends.
For more information on the ACC CLO Survey or to purchase a copy of the
full survey or customized benchmarking report, visit www.acc.com/closurvey.
About ACC: The Association of Corporate Counsel (ACC)
is a global bar association that promotes the professional and business
interests of in-house counsel through information,
opportunities and advocacy
initiatives. The association, which is celebrating its 30th
anniversary, has more than 30,000 members employed by over 10,000
organizations in more than 75 countries. ACC connects its members to the
people and resources necessary for personal and professional growth. For
more information, visit www.acc.com
and follow ACC on Twitter (News - Alert) http://twitter.com/ACCinhouse.
By in-house counsel, for in-house counsel.®
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