The legal services sector has been slow to embrace changing workplace trends, but what was once "the future" is "the now." Pricing pressures and cost efficiency are making it crystal clear that firms must quickly pivot their traditional operational mindset and adapt strategically or risk missing the growth train. As research budgets are stretched, law firms will increasingly adopt alternative staffing strategies as they come to terms with the rapidly shifting landscape.
The legal profession may have been slower to adopt current workspace trends than other occupiers, but a new report from Savills Studley makes it clear that change is coming. “In a sector where individual offices are still the rule rather than the exception, we expect that law firms will occupy increasingly less space in the years ahead and look to extract many of the space efficiencies that other service sector firms have already embraced,” according to the report. The report notes that the current year may well surpass 2015 for M&A's “as firms look to strengthen their ability to serve their clients by adding new practice areas and growing existing ones, all while reducing duplicative expenses.” In addition, law firms’ research budgets are down generally, and an increasing number of large and small firms are pursuing alternative staffing strategies.