What are you doing about pricing and profitability in 2020? (first published on Validatum)

by Sue Bramall

The 2019 PwC Law Firms Survey revealed that, “…the finance function’s top three priorities are pricing and profitability, working capital and business analysis/ reporting. These priorities are reflective of the continued high fee income write off levels and widening gaps in year end and average lock up performance. …What will be frustrating for many firms is the inability to flow these improvements through to the high level of fee income write offs”.

Pwc 2019

So, if pricing and profitability have floated to the surface for you in 2020, where might you start? ‘Where’s the legal services pricing puck heading?

There are broadly speaking four areas you need to tackle;

Pricing governance and policy:

The firm needs to debate and reach a consensus on such things as;

Pricing Analytics & Reporting:

Pricing Skills, Resources & Pricing Execution:

Pricing & project management technology:

Where to from here?

Clearly, these issues can’t all be tackled overnight or simultaneously. Which issues are picked off and in which order, depends on the current status of pricing in the firm. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer to that question.

Before riding off in all directions at once therefore, it can often be helpful for firms to do a pricing ‘stock-take’ first – ‘Pricing Self-Assessment Health Check’

This kind of candid stock-take can help to provide a solid platform for further decisions about pricing.

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by Sue Bramall

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