Biglaw, General Counsel, In-House Counsel, Rankings

Which Biglaw Firms Rank in the ‘Absolute Best’ for Client Service?

About a year ago, we brought our readers some stats on the Biglaw firms that were representing some of America’s biggest companies. While that information was interesting, it only covered firms that were currently involved in litigation on behalf of Fortune 100 companies, leaving all of the worthy dealmakers out in the cold. To make matters worse, we only knew which firms were in court the most frequently on behalf of corporate clients — we knew nothing about their success rates.

Now, we’ve got a list that general counsel will really be interested in — a list of the Biglaw firms that are the best of the best in terms of client service. Are you sick of your outside counsel giving you the runaround? Are you tired of receiving deliverables that are off the mark?

These are the firms that have been rated the “absolute best” by general counsel…

BTI Consulting Group conducted a comprehensive study on client service, noting that while 650 firms did business with Fortune 1000 companies in 2012, only 332 of those firms were nominated by their corporate clients for excellent service. If your firm was in the half of the list that performed unsatisfactorily, perhaps you should consult this list on why outside counsel gets fired. Hope that helps.

BTI then ranked the 332 firms that performed well, based on a scale of “17 client service activities.” The report (available here) doesn’t describe what those “service activities” are, but for the sake of argument, let’s assume those include, but are not limited to, not wasting the company’s money, not providing moronic legal advice in bet-the-company litigation, and other little nitpicky things like that.

When all was said and done, just 30 were honored for being the best of the best in terms of client service. Corporate Counsel (via Morning Docket) provides us with the top 10 firms on the list:

1. Jones Day
2. Mayer Brown
3. Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom
4. McGuireWoods
5. Seyfarth Shaw
6. Thompson Hine
7. Kirkland & Ellis
8. Faegre Baker Daniels
9. Baker & McKenzie
10. Sullivan & Cromwell

To see the full list of all 30 firms, check out the BTI Consulting report.

It’s worth noting that none of these firms were listed in the top 10 of Corporate Counsel’s “Litigation Kings” list (and Mayer Brown, Faegre Baker Daniels, Baker & McKenzie, and Sullivan & Cromwell weren’t on the list of litigation mentions at all). Perhaps these firms are great at keeping their clients out of court, which is sure to qualify as superior client service for any large company.

BTI Consulting also provides some great data for general counsel in its report, such as the firms that are the best at handling e-discovery (read: the firms that hire the best doc reviewers), trends in legal spending rates, and the growth of in-house legal departments after major cuts in 2011.

See anything shocking or surprising in these results? Send us an email, or comment. Thanks!

Which Firms Provide the Best Outside Counsel? [Corporate Counsel]

Earlier: Who Represents America’s Biggest Companies?

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