2018 Law Firm Benchmarking  

The results of our annual law firm benchmarking
provide a timely snapshot of the legal industry's performance in the UK.

The big picture

 

 pep image  headcount image brexit image 

2/3

of firms saw an
increase in PEP

70%

of firms have
increased their 
headcount


Brexit cited as a threat by
56% of city firms and
40% of regional firms

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking back over the past year, it is difficult to find an area of the legal market that has not seen change. In the face of changing regulation, as well as economic and political uncertainty, it is interesting to hear where law firms consider the largest challenges and opportunities lie.


City Firms

City firms have experienced a more challenging year than in 2017, with 10% reporting a fall in revenue, compared to 8% last year, though the proportion of firms achieving growth of more than 10% remained strong.

For those firms that saw an increase in turnover, 40% saw an increase of more than 10%, which is a jump compared to one third seen last year. Overall however, City firms have seen a slowing in the pace of growth.

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buildings image

 

magnifying image 

Regional Firms

Almost 30% of regional firms experienced a fall in revenue this year compared to 20% in 2017. However, of the firms that did experience growth this year, a slightly higher proportion compared to the previous year, saw an increase of more than 10%. Like their City counterparts, equity partners in regional firms fared reasonably well this year with 64% of firms reporting an increase in PEP, compared to 60% in 2017 and an average increase in PEP of 6%.

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lighthouse-at-sunset

What lies ahead?

Firms are still placing importance on recruiting and retaining high quality staff, but the persistent uncertainty around Brexit, the threat of non-lawyer firms and the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) is encouraging many to reassess their next steps.

Our Professional Practices team

Our professional practices team advises law firms of all sizes on their growth plans, always tailoring our advice to best suit their needs.
Louis Baker
Louis Baker
Partner, Head of Professional Practices
London
Steve Gale
Steve Gale
Partner, Professional Practices and Head of Audit
London
Ross Prince
Ross Prince
Partner, Audit
Midlands