AUSTRALIAN LAW Firm of the Year, Truman Hoyle, has this year introduced an innovative solution for its clients, removing the need for time-based billing while still providing clients with regular access to lawyers.
A number of clients have adopted the firm’s fixed price General Counsel Services strategy, which provides an experienced lawyer on a fixed-price basis in the client’s offices one or two days per week to work as in-house counsel.
This enables the firm’s lawyers to rapidly develop a detailed understanding of its clients’ business. “This initiative has led to deeper client relationships and better skilled lawyers. It has assisted our lawyers to achieve the best of both worlds by combining the commercial interest of an in-house position with the variety of private practice,” said managing partner, Shane Barber.
“Our General Counsel Services model differs from the usual practice of Australia’s largest firms in sending junior secondee’s into corporations. We only provide senior professionals with extensive relevant legal and industry experience,” he said.
To complement its General Counsel Services model, the firm has adopted enhanced technology to fully mobilise staff.
For instance, all of the firm’s lawyers now use laptops with iBurst wireless broadband technology, allowing them to operate in a virtual office environment even when acting as ‘in-house counsel’, travelling or working from outside the office.
“This has enabled unprecedented efficiencies and has allowed lawyers to achieve more varied careers and better work/life balance,” said Barber.
Also on the technological front, all of the firm’s lawyers have access to digital dictation so they may dictate documents anywhere in the world and have them processed immediately at the firm’s Sydney office.