Posts Tagged ‘bottom line’

Legal Outsourcing Company: Someone’s thriving from Lawyers’ Misery

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On June 2, 2010 Corporate Counsel publishes an article regarding Wipro an Indian-BASED legal process outsourcing company.[

Wipro Legal Process Outsourcing Creates Gold Standard For Customer Value] and the same company will provide LPO services to Microsoft [Wipro to provide LPO to Microsoft’s IP, June 16, 2010]. Wow, I know Apple and Microsoft are always battling in the technology industry but who would have forseen Microsoft’s legal department work  outsourced to India.

On June 14, 2010 i Bridge gets a feature: Demand for Legal Outsourcing Drives Growth at iBridge in Beaverton, which profiles the company based in Oregon which does electronic business solutions for various fields including the legal industry. As stated before, many in the legal field have already noted the impact of the unofficial permissibility for law firms to outsource discovery materials to India for document review. iBridge is that “middle-man” in this instance to get the documents uploaded.

To give you some insight on the day to day o perations: “The company’s growth is driven by the demand for outsourcing of legal industry support services such as early case assessment, information collection and management, hosting and document review. The iBridge team comprises of experienced project managers, technologists, seasoned in-house and contract attorneys admitted to the bar in the U.S. and India.”  See those key words: ‘project mangers’, ‘facility’; ‘contract attorneys.’ Facility, isn’t that a work synonymous with hospitals and manufacturing plants? Attorneys, as other bloggers have called out, are part of the McJob and WalMartization of the legal industry. Those who have survived on working with firms doing similar work, is it not obvious a new career path is needed?

I am actually not surprised at all. Someone informed me a few years ago a company who was doing exactly that where the contract attorneys are akin to the permanent staff of the vendor company thus eliminating the need for a law firm to actually hire attorneys themselves through placement agencies or junior level associates whose primary job was to perform document review. As evidenced by this statement: “This team is often called to supplement law firms and in-house counsel to aid in complex litigation and document review projects.” Talk about business model and changing operations and saving money, well so the argument goes: “The value the firm provides is in enhanced productivity and lowered costs in data heavy litigation.” Though this company is innovative in decreasing costs to law firms. Just imagine the founders of this company don’t have law degrees and likely little to no student loans…the legal industry will never be the same.

A Post from Above the Law Website: Commentary on ABA approved outsourcing

This article was featured on Above the Law website, surprisingly it concerns the plight of unemployed attorneys who must survive amidst the legal outsourcing phenomenon by corporate law firms. Hopefully this wasn’t already posted on another blog. I wonder to what extent outsourcing is receiving such attention now, is it because T-14 graduates are now having to be in the company of the non-prestigious lawyers and it is having a big effect on them? I remember attorneys telling me that the discovery review work was for a long period of time the work of first year associates, then became the work of the contractual attorneys–which helped firms bottom lines. So I initially thought, maybe as a result the firms would not hire as many associates who are likely from T-14, thus rendering them in pro bono, internship or contract attorney work. As outsourcing gained additional support, more attorneys across the economic and social spectrum have been affected–is this why more people care now? Or do they really?: Anyway here’s the featured piece:

Legal Olympics Update: Outsourcing E-Discovery Sliding Down Slippery Slope, at Record Speed

The author doesn’t seem to oppose the cost-cutting effects on most American attorneys but suggests it’s primarily an issue of quality. Agreeably the standards in most foreign countries are likely not as strict in it’s process. So I get from this that it’s ok to keep outsourcing as long as quality measures were actually put in place. So in the end, no one cares about the masses of American attorneys affected by it.