Law firm benchmarking

Since 1957, the PwC Law Firm Services Group has provided premier law firms with comprehensive benchmarking information on a broad range of management topics that challenge law firm leaders.

Participation in our benchmarking program can allow your firm to:

  • Gain a deeper understanding of its relative position in the market.
  • Identify potential opportunities to improve profitability.
  • Make better informed strategic decisions.

What's new in 2018

  • Base salary and bonus information will be collected and reported for the Staff Attorneys
  • A new section on Partner Turnover Information has been added and will be included in the Partner Management Report (PMR) 
  • Associate Retention by Law Class Year has been added and will be included in the Talent Management Report (TMR)
  • The Partner ‘Years of Experience’ Ranges for all metrics have been expanded
  • A ‘Report Export’ Spreadsheet will be available from the Talent Management Report (TMR)
  • The ‘C-Suite’ and another ‘Director-Level Administrative Leaders’ titles have been expanded
  • Additional content has been added to both the Revenue360 and Talent360 Performance Analytics Dashboards
  • Past participants in the LFSS can request a tailored Data Form that includes the individual Firm’s historical submissions
  • A newly designed Data Extraction Tool is available for all LFSS participants
  • Pricing has been modified to be more cost-effective for small to mid-size firms
  • A Subscription-based payment option will be offered for those firms participating in the unlimited comparison groups and Report styles from both the LFSS and the BRASSplus

Survey products/reports available

Metrics on the four core areas of revenue management – rates, realization, utilization and leverage.

Associate compensation & bonus levels and Diversity & Inclusion metrics.

Filter benchmarks across years, comparison groups, metrics and attorney groups.

Key metrics on the business owners of the firm, including compensation and capital balance levels.

Base salary and bonus levels for the ‘C-Suite’ and Director-Level Administrative Leaders.

Key metrics on the overall financial performance and operations of the Firm.

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Participant feedback

During the year, our Law Firm Survey Group responds to many requests made by our survey participants. The types of requests range from sending additional and customized benchmarking reports to preparing firm-specific presentations delivered to management teams of law firms. We strive to respond to your needs in a timely, informed and professional manner. Some of the feedback we have received regarding our responsiveness and the quality of our survey products is described below:

"The PwC annual statistical survey is the best tool available to help us better understand our operational issues, including staffing ratios and expense levels. The survey data has been extremely useful in establishing benchmarks for targeted financial improvement." – Director, "Top 10" law firm

"The best business intelligence available to law firms." – CFO, "Top 150" law firm

"The PwC billing rate & associate salary survey is the best source of comparative billing rate information available at the geographic and practice area level. And these are the levels of detail necessary to make informed decisions about our billing rates." – Director, "Top 10" law firm

"We use both the annual statistical survey and billing rate survey to help us perform our own reality check. With the volatility in associate salaries we have found the billing rate survey to be very helpful, especially for branch office information." – Executive Director, "Top 150" law firm

"Objective information obtained from the PwC surveys on billing rates, productivity by class of timekeepers and partner investments and earnings is invaluable in managing our business." – Financial Manager, "Top 50" law firm

"We use the survey information extensively in financial retreats, partner meetings and also in making billing rate decisions. I am even more impressed with the high standard of customer service we receive from the survey staff." – Financial Manager, midsize law firm

"The PwC semi-annual rate survey is an important management tool that we use to ensure we are receiving market rates for our services. This survey provides firm management with objective data regarding where our firm billing rates are relative to the market. Without a survey like this it would be easy for our billing rates to fall behind the market given the natural reluctance of lawyers to increase their billing rates." – CFO, "Top 150" law firm

“One major difference between the PwC surveys and other surveys available in the market is the detailed instructions that are always provided by PwC. These instructions prove to be a valuable resource when completing the surveys, and help provide a level playing field, as all law firms submit information that is comparable.”

“The PwC Surveys are a truly unique source of strategic information about our very competitive market. There really is no other source for this type of information. The surveys are very sophisticated and analytically rigorous.”

“Both Surveys provide tools that we ultimately use to budget and forecast for the upcoming year.”

“The survey support staff continues to be both professional and very responsive in working to accommodate any ad hoc requests our Firm may have.”

“We continue to use the PwC Surveys as our focal point in comparing ourselves and benchmarking operations, salaries, rates and the like each year. It is by far the most comprehensive and well subscribed benchmarking product that we use in this connection, and given the maturity of it, the most reliable in providing data we can count on. Given the data extraction tool also, it is no longer an ordeal to get the data. The continuous refinement of the data and statistics that we obtain reflects PwC's collective willingness to respond to their clientele and to allow all participants the value of each other’s good ideas. Given your broad scope and ability to slice and dice the data and then return it to us in so many combinations of geography, practice group, size of firm, profitability profile and so on, is really useful to us in decision making and resource allocation.”

“The PwC Surveys provides the benefit of utilizing free software, developed by Redwood Analytics, to extract data versus running various reports to compile the information onto paper documents. Behind the scenes calculations are performed to alleviate manual work, providing a more time-friendly experience. The resulting reports are very thorough, and provide excellent comparison group information that is tailored to the needs of our firm.”

Contact us

Gregg Sincoff
Tax Managing Director
Tel: +1 (646) 471 1335

Laurie Lieb
Tel: +1 (602) 364 8299

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