Why Choose an ALSP? – Law Technology Today

In recent years, new technology, specialization, client demand, and the pandemic forced the legal industry to adopt more efficient practices, including embracing the use of virtual legal services. In an ever-changing business environment, many companies need the flexibility of remote, on-demand engagement with outsourced legal services. Enter Alternative Legal Service Providers (ALSPs). Almost two-thirds of respondents to Bloomberg Law’s 2022 Legal Ops & Tech Survey revealed that their organizations outsource legal work to alternative legal service providers (ALSPs). So, what exactly is an ALSP and why do you need one?

Alternative legal service providers (ALSPs) are non-law-firm providers with purpose-built delivery services that perform legal work at a lower cost than traditional law firms and corporate legal departments, offering increased flexibility designed to address the legal needs of any organization.

What are the benefits of using an ALSP?

  1. Gain specialized expertise
    ALSPs can offer a range of expertise that legal departments don’t have in-house. In some instances, this allows companies to meet a peak demand or complex request without increasing their permanent headcount.
  1. Reduce costs
    ALSPs offer the benefit of a cost-effective pricing structure while budgeting and forecasting legal spend with absolute certainty. Legal operations consultants put a strong focus on data and metrics to conserve legal spend, maximize legal resources, and evaluate processes and solutions within legal departments.
  2. Access legal resources quickly
    With flexible staffing offerings, ALSP clients can tap into quality legal resources quickly to ramp up support for new or existing needs. These resources include lawyers and legal professionals at all levels providing added flexibility and fit to clients’ organizations.
  1. Save time and increase efficiency
    With the increasing pressures felt by legal teams, we often see a decrease in legal operations efficiencies. ALSPs have the ability to evaluate and adjust a wide variety of processes, methodologies, and technologies that are critical to maintaining effectiveness.
  2. Leverage cutting-edge technologies and innovations

As technology plays an increasing role in the practice of law, it’s essential that attorneys stay abreast of emerging technologies and disruptors in the field. ALSPs bring an innovation mindset to the legal industry that can prove invaluable to companies.

In today’s legal industry landscape, law departments and companies are challenged to find ways to do more with less by completing certain legal tasks at a lower cost and with more efficient methodologies. Once an outlier, ALSPs have since shown they can successfully provide the legal services that companies rely on to handle a wide range of legal work across numerous practice areas from commercial law and transactions to government contracting, intellectual property (IP) law and licensing, technology transactions, compliance functions, litigation, regulatory law, and more. Through innovative service plans with flexible pricing models, clients gain easier access to quality legal resources when they need them. This allows clients to manage overflow legal work, spikes in workflow, special projects, or any other legal support needed in that given practice area with clarity as to cost and timing.

Major law firms are also pressured by their clients to do more with less which makes ALSPs an excellent option for BigLaw players seeking to quickly expand or contract their workforce, offload routine matters, enlist specialized expertise, and support client needs with tech-centric offerings.

Offering the flexibility of remote, on-demand, and specialized engagement with outsourced legal services, according to the Alternative Legal Services Providers 2023 Report, published by the Thomson Reuters Institute, the Center on Ethics and the Legal Profession at Georgetown Law, and the Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford, ALSPs now comprise a $20.6 billion segment of the legal market. An excellent resource for efficient, cost-effective, and customized solutions, ALSPs can address the legal needs of almost any organization.

About the Author

Monica Zent is an experienced entrepreneur, investor, inventor, and trusted legal advisor and strategist to multiple global brands. Zent is also founder and CEO of Foxwordy Inc., a patented digital collaboration platform for the legal industry, and founder of ZentLaw, one of the nation’s leading alternative law firms. 

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