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Most innovative US law firms: Business of law 2012

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Firm
Rank
Innovation
Originality
Rationale
Impact
Total
Description
AxiomStandoutManaged Services Business78924The long-term outsourcing of company legal functions has enabled general counsel to increase their value to business through teams of different professionals, not just lawyers.
Orrick, Herrington & SutcliffeStandoutComprehensive approach to operations88824From project management to document review to its Global Corporate Solutions, the firm has transformed its approach to delivering legal services.
DLA PiperStandoutVenture Pipeline: a service for investors and start-ups78823A unique business development proposition that provides a free, value-add service to companies which need funding if they sign up as clients.
Holland & KnightStandoutAn alternative to the billable hour98623A new system to replace using the billable hour as a measuring unit in fixed-fee matters. The new system allocated percentages of the fixed fee to team members depending on their role.
Littler MendelsonStandoutLittler CaseSmart78823The firm re-engineered the defence and management of administrative agency charges to make cost savings for clients and introduce better risk management.
Latham & WatkinsHighly commendedNational office68822The firm set up a competency centre to centralise know-how and expertise on securities law to become one of the leading voices on the subject.
Paul HastingsHighly commendedSecondment revamp78722The firm has reinvented its programme to include partner-level secondees, resulting in better relationships and broader instructions.
Seyfarth ShawHighly commendedSeyfarthLean Consulting77822The firm established a consulting business to help in-house legal teams become more efficient through a holistic approach to workflow and resourcing.
Bracewell & GiulianiHighly commendedPolicy resolution group67720A new business unit that combines legal, government relations and communications advice for clients with flexible billing arrangements.
Crowell & MoringHighly commendedLegal project management68620Introducing project management in the firm with the aim of changing behaviour, introducing new technologies and improving training.
Paul HastingsHighly commendedClient-focused competencies78520Developing competency frameworks around behaviour that grades associates on the skills that are important to clients and empowers associates.
Simpson Thacher & BartlettHighly commendedSetting up the Public Company Advisory Practice (PCAP)67720A company board practice that focuses on issues such as executive compensation and succession, and corporate governance. One of the benefits is that it also helps the firm retain working parents through providing predictable work days.
White & CaseHighly commendedAssociate online business skills development curriculum68620The programme encompasses competency models for business skills including mini-MBAs delivered online across the firm's global offices.
Arent FoxCommendedTools to resolve financing deadlocks in construction projects67619The firm has developed new products within the legal community designed to create value and avoid competition by providing a meaningful and measurable approach to selling and providing legal services.
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & HamiltonCommendedEstablishment of a mini-MBA training program68519The firm invested $2m in giving first-year lawyers business training that amounts to a two-week MBA. The course is both practical and theoretical.
Davis Polk & WardwellCommendedInteractive Volcker rule tools67619The first to market with interactive tools that explain the Volcker rule, the response was favourable from financial institutions and won the firm new instructions.
Davis Polk & WardwellCommendedEarly career development program67619A new system of recruitment and training for summer interns and associates has pushed up productivity and client satisfaction levels.
DechertCommendedLegal project management for GlaskoSmithKline67619A collaborative approach to project management between Dechert and GSK has created matter-value prediction that is replicable.
Latham & WatkinsCommendedReal estate advantage67619Forward-thinking use of office space to enhance the working environment for attorneys, the firm was cited in the Citi report as having "a meaningful occupancy expense advantage".
Morrison & FoersterCommendedFrankNDodd™76619The resource is free for clients but is essentially a regulatory tool that revolves around a database.
RimonCommendedCloud-centered social media Pioneers67619Using cloud technology, the founders have created a virtual law firm that works on top-tier work and has grown to 32 attorneys.
WilmerHaleCommendedWilmerHale Discovery Solutions (WHDS)76619Developed WHDS to provide clients with efficient and cost-effective electronic document discovery and review. The service includes a specialist team of 70 discovery attorneys.
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