Feature image HSBC report 2020

Briefing | HSBC Strategy and investment report


What are law firms' strategic and investment plans and priorities in 2020?





Welcome to HSBC and Briefing’s 2020 report on law firms’ evolving growth and investment strategies. It is based on a wide-ranging survey of business leaders at leading UK-headquartered law firms, including managing partners, CEOs, CFOs and CIOs, and seeks to understand both current priorities and thoughts about the future. This year’s results are seen, of course, through the lens of an intensely challenging year, and the survey covers many factors in light of this – including plans and priorities for future growth, technology investment, use of office space and agile working adoption, and key aspects of financial management.   

Keep growing?

Law firms aren’t planning to apply the breaks to international growth plans in the face of the continually unfolding effects of the pandemic. Four in ten law firm leaders report that the current strategy is to grow internationally, and a mere 1% indicate they are looking to retrench from global markets.

If your firm has an international presence or an ambition to grow, what is your current strategy?



Model behaviours

Leaders indicate that firms don’t have plans to pull on at least one longer-term financial lever – their number of equity partners relative to salaried fee earners.

Will your firm make any changes to its partnership structure as a consequence of Covid-19?

Technology strategies transformed?

Over half of leaders say their firms are spending more on technology in 2020, but top-priority projects have changed.

How is technology investment being affected by the pandemic in your firm?



Support for agility

How is software supporting firms to change?

Paths to greater knowledge

What are firm knowledge leaders prioritising for focus and change in 2021?