Biglaw, General Counsel, In-House Counsel, Rankings

The Association of Corporate Counsel Rankings

Association of Corporate Counsel logo.jpgOn Wednesday, we told you that the Association of Corporate Counsel was ranking law firms based on evaluations from its members. We also told you that some law firm partners were very concerned about this list.
We have the list.
The ACC Value Index currently has responses for 448 law firms — big and small, big city and secondary markets. Sadly, the vast majority of the firms have very few responses. Apparently corporate counsels have better things to do than rank the quality of legal services they receive. Most firms — including some of the bigger names, like Cravath and Sullivan & Cromwell — have three or fewer responses.
But some firms have generated more reviews. Which firms from the Am Law 200 are in the top ten and bottom ten of the ACC rankings?

The ACC is asking clients to rate law firms in these six categories, on a scale of one-to-five:

* Understands objectives/expectations
* Legal expertise
* Efficiency/process management
* Responsiveness/communication
* Predictable cost/budgeting skills
* Results delivered/execution

The firm’s individual profile also has a breakdown for subject matter. So corporate counsel can score firms highly in one area, but not so great in another. The ACC then translates that all into a five-star system.
The list is still very much a work in progress. And you can see how one “bad” evaluation might really mess with a firm’s overall score.
Since most firms have three or fewer reviews, we decided to look only at firms that have received at least five reviews. Below you’ll see the top 10 Am Law 200 firms (and the number of reviews the firm has received), as rated by their corporate clients.

5 star firms:
1. Ballard Spahr: 5 reviews.
2. Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge: 7 reviews.
3. Howrey: 12 reviews.
4. Thompson Hine: 6 reviews.
4.5 star firms:
5. Morrison & Foerster: 7 reviews.
6. Orrick: 5 reviews.
7. Schiff Hardin: 14 reviews.
8. Seyfarth Shaw: 11 reviews.
9. Pillsbury: 9 reviews.
10. Venable: 7 reviews.

And now let’s look at how the other half lives. The lowest rated (of the Am Law 200, with at least five reviews so far):

3.5 star firms:
1. Dewey: 18 reviews.
2. Kirkland & Ellis: 21 reviews.
3. Weil Gotshal: 6 reviews
4 star firms:
4. Cooley Godward: 17 reviews.
5. Hunton & Williams: 5 reviews.
6. Greenberg Traurig: 27 reviews.
7. Jones Day: 12 reviews.
8. K&L Gates: 5 reviews.
9. Holland & Knight: 30 reviews.
10. Latham: 8 reviews.

As you can see, there is a lot bunching in this list, and with so few responses overall, it’s hard to know if these rankings are going to be useful.
But it’s a start. Law firms are interested in what their clients think, and this list is sure to be something that firms will want to keep their eye on as it develops.
Earlier: Law Firm Rankings By Clients, But We Can’t See Them

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