Our fourth annual client survey shows the maturing role of in-house counsel leading to greater job satisfaction. But in winning more responsibility, are they taking on more than they can handle?
Career-wise, in-house is the new black. As Chris Fowler, general counsel (GC) for BT’s UK commercial legal services division, observes, there is now much more of a desire among millennials to work for companies than in private practice. With in-house teams evolving in status to become more important to the business, the role of the corporate counsel now is far more attractive to law graduates than ever before.
Our fourth in-house survey shows a softening stance towards external advisers from general counsel, reflecting the need for high-quality consultative advice.
With more than 20 years spent in multiple in-house legal positions, BAE Systems’ group general counsel (GC) Philip Bramwell has been at the centre of the evolution of the in-house legal profession. But despite seeing the GC rise in prominence to trusted adviser status, he doesn’t believe the role will shift so fundamentally that it will lessen dependence on external counsel.
Client rankings from our fourth annual in-house survey show that GCs continue to trust premium advice. Can non-law firm providers make headway?
During the 1990s, when ITV’s current group general counsel (GC) Andrew Garard was serving a stint as head of legal at Reuters, a deal landed on his desk that required external advice. A revolving credit facility which, he says, was the first-ever syndicated loan deal done via the internet.
Sarah Downey reports on the clients’ verdict
Linklaters has again been awarded top marks as an external adviser in Legal Business‘ fourth annual in-house survey, emerging as the clear overall favourite for both quality of advice on high-profile, strategic matters, as well as ranking first overall for value for money.
Interviewed for our annual in-house report, general counsel at leading companies give us their views on diversity, ethics and joining the c-suite
‘When I was a young lawyer, I remember working with an outside counsel and I said to him: “What’s your job versus my job?” He said: “My job is to make you look good.” My thoughts at the time were that there has to be more to it than that, but for firms that have focused on that mission, there’s been an upside for me and them. Those with no clue, who are just looking to build their book of business, have not fared well with me.’
Wanji Walcott, senior vice president, managing counsel, American Express
In what signals a marked return to favour for the City’s elite players, Magic Circle firm Linklaters has led the field in Legal Business’ third annual in-house survey as best overall adviser in 2014, pushing Eversheds, which emerged as the clear overall favourite in 2013, into second place.
In what signals a marked return to favour for the City’s elite players, Magic Circle firm Linklaters has led the field in Legal Business‘ third annual in-house survey as best overall adviser in 2014, pushing Eversheds, which emerged as the clear overall favourite in 2013, into second place.
Our 2014 survey, which drew responses from 436 individuals at major companies operating in the UK, reveals the top ten firms comprise largely the same names as last year, with the Magic Circle plus Eversheds, DLA Piper, Pinsent Masons and Baker & McKenzie all appearing. The only significant change was alternative legal services provider Axiom taking the tenth spot, pushing Herbert Smith Freehills into 11th place, demonstrating how non-law firm providers are winning over some bluechip clients.