Fifty-One Percent of General Counsel Report an Increase in Budget, Consero Survey Reveals

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BETHESDA, Md- (July 24, 2014) – Fifty-one percent of General Counsel reported an increase in budget over the last twelve months, according to a new survey by Consero Group, an international leader in creating high-level, invitation-only events for senior executives. The results were reported as part of the General Counsel Data Survey, compiled by Consero Group.

In addition, 44 percent of surveyed General Counsel said their staff size had increased over the last 12 months.

“Our survey indicates that a majority of General Counsel saw an increase in budget this year, with a significant number reporting growth in staff size, as well,” said Paul Mandell, Founder & CEO of Consero.  “These increases are a positive sign that the level of resources available to legal departments is on the rise, providing General Counsel with the budgetary and staff resources they need in order to navigate the increasingly complex legal risks and liabilities of the business.”

Keeping Work In-House

The Consero survey also reveals that 84 percent of General Counsel said they are not delegating more of the company’s work to outside counsel than they did 12 months ago.  In addition, 58 percent are using alternative-fee arrangements for outside counsel work.

“With such a large majority of surveyed General Counsel opting not to delegate more of the company’s legal work to their outside counsel, and evidence of continued pursuit of alternative-fee arrangements, our survey indicates that despite recent budget increases, General Counsel remain focused on investing internally and on keeping legal costs down,” said Mandell.

Data Breach Risks

Nearly half (49%) said their companies are not adequately prepared to defend against a data breach.

“Our survey signals that companies are not fully protected from any potential cyber breaches, which is a significant area of potential liability,” added Mandell.  “This finding presents a clear opportunity for improvement.”

Other Findings Included:

  • Increasing Volume of Cases Against Companies: Forty percent of respondents said they had experienced an increase in cases filed against their company in the past year.
  • Social Media Policies Effectively Mitigate Risk: Sixty-five percent of surveyed General Counsel said their company’s social media policy effectively mitigates legal risk.
  •  Compliance/Regulatory Top Area of Focus in Months Ahead: Nearly a quarter (23%) of respondents named compliance/regulatory as their top area of focus in the coming months, closely followed by labor/employment (21%) and litigation (21%).

The General Counsel Data Survey was developed in connection with an invitation-only event hosted by Consero Group in June 2014 for General Counsel from Fortune 1000 companies. A total of 57 responses were provided.

About Consero

Founded in 2010, Consero Group is an international leader in creating industry-specific events for senior-level executives in industries that include: Legal, Compliance, Shared Services, Customer Experience, Finance, IT, HR, Procurement, among others. With operations in the U.S. and in Europe, Consero is best known for transforming the executive experience through intimate, invitation-only programs in a sophisticated learning environment with high-level content. For more information on Consero, please visit www.consero.com.

Contact:
Mark Pasetsky
Mark Allen & Company
212.699.3756
mark@markallenco.com