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One thing is for sure. Top legal decision makers see a surging workload. They see their backlog climbing. And they are being asked a lot of questions. BTI conducted 2 flash surveys to get a read on what they are thinking and what to expect on everything from risk, to data privacy, to M&A. Here are 7 key insights:

1. 35% to 40% of companies report business unit leaders are flooding their corporate counsel with questions about:

  • How to provide a safe environment for employees

  • Guidelines for closures

  • Language, procedures, and process to talk about closures

  • What to do with employees at work who are clearly or may be ill

2. Data privacy needs are surging daily

  • Clients see unintended employee mistakes as one of the most overlooked and underappreciated risks in the data privacy and cybersecurity world – and now companies are opening the floodgates to remote workers – a good thing – but not without this under appreciate risk

  • These decision makers point out there are no extensions for CCPA and GDPR

Look for our new report BTI Cybersecurity & Data Privacy 2020 tomorrow, March 19th. Learn the 109 law firms clients single out as leading the market, detailed client needs and expectations, hiring plans, and outlook for 7 key segments in this pivotal market.

3. Some courts have slowed or are closing – but clients are busy dealing with current caseloads and planning for the new. They are expecting a surge in:

a.      Increased gender equality claims as work from home combined with school closures and care giving puts new pressures on work life balance

b.      Employee claims around safeguarding health

c.      Securities claims

d.      Contract performance

e.      Supply disputes

4. 15% more clients plan to use AFAs than last year as a tool to manage the expected case load

5. M&A clients are looking at different strategies from 3 months ago:

  • 30% of clients have slowed their M&A activities

  • 40% put their M&A activities on temporary hold

  • 20% are not engaging in mergers and acquisitions at all

  • 10% of companies are hunting for deals at these valuations

6. Clients see tempered but increased risk

Clients are keeping a cool head. When asked to measure risk on a 1 to 5 scale, here is how things play out. Risk is up:

  • 11% from a year ago

  • 8% from 3 months ago

The increased risk is attributable to unexpected outcomes stemming from Coronavirus and volatility in the capital markets.

7. Faster decision making

Higher risk usually means slower approvals and decision making. But clients are acting with more gravitas and speed as the pandemic gains momentum. Clients don’t want to be behind this curve.

Faster decision making and minimally higher perceived risk gives you even more reason to stay in touch with your clients. Be helpful, educational, caring, and brief. We also recommend you learn to love video calls. They may be here a while – even when this finally passes us by.

Be safe and healthy.


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