Briefing Frontiers 2024


Top trends in law firm transformation agendas for the year to come



The Briefing Frontiers report is this publication’s flagship annual benchmarking research into the intersection of more than 60 leading law firms’ investment plans and choices, evolving organisational challenges as working patterns, processes and possibilities continue to shift the market, and the strategic decisions laying the ground for ambitious growth goals.

For example, where are innovation priorities headed as the firm of 2025 approaches? Do strategic legal leaders already have an official plan for leveraging large language models within legal and operational processes? How soon will all of your core business systems be cloud-based — and which are the most troubling tech-touching pain and/or turning points?

Data is clearly displayed and carefully explained with eye-catching, easy-read graphics, alongside Briefing editorial team analysis and supporting commentary from C-suite level business management leaders at a broad range of firms, including Boodle Hatfield, Burges Salmon, Clarke WillmottHempsons, Forsters, Howard Kennedy, Shearman & Sterling and Weightmans.

We also bring valuable perspectives on the year’s big findings from each of our Briefing Frontiers research partners for 2024: Aderant, Aiqos, Elite, Intapp, Fulcrum GT, LexisNexis Enterprise Solutions and NetDocuments.

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Appetite for innovation in the age of AI

Over two-fifths (44%) of top firms, according to their leaders, made more funding available in 2023 specifically for activity that would be classed as innovation. In line with the question of appetite, just 6% report that an innovation budget or similar was reduced — although more than one in 10 don’t ring-fence such spend away from business as usual at all.

What’s the plan for business process improvement?

Over three-quarters (78%) of law firm leaders report their firm now has a ‘strategy or plan’ for applying generative artificial intelligence to some processes. Moreover, two-thirds (64%) believe the technology will be used in aspects of legal service delivery itself within 12–18 months.

Data deliverables — leaders lack confidence in the keys to connectedness

Regardless of their approach to data management, a mere 16% of business leaders can currently describe the flow of information between the firm’s various business systems as ‘effective’. Just over a third say they still face ‘significant challenges’ in getting the business to that point.


Generative artificial intelligence

How can firms unleash the power of generative artificial intelligence?

Reem Khurshid


Business development and marketing leaders 2023

Where does law firm BD and marketing want to see progress as a priority?

Richard B