Lauer & Associates
Leading Lawyers to Higher-Value Legal Service




The Value-Able Law Firm: Delivering Client-Focused, Higher-Value Legal Service for Clients and Law Firms

(American Bar Association 2018) Order it here.

Reader's comments about The Value-Able Law Firm

“The authors practically explain value in a variety of contexts that clients can face. Lawyers need to connect these practical explanations with our own understanding of value in everyday life, with the creativity that we display in developing novel legal arguments, and with our curiosity about local, state, national, and international events in relating to our clients. Understanding what a client values should be considered part of our ethical obligations to zealously represent our clients." Albert C. Peters II, General Litigation and Contracts Counsel for the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission

“This book represents a strong contribution to the change management challenges lawyers face in moving from a time-billing to a value-based approach, magnifying key qualities clients desire most across cost, consistency, predictability, speed and responsiveness. In doing so, Mr. Lauer and Mr. Vermilion design pathways of success for outside and in-house counsel engagement. Law firms digesting this book can optimize business development to make client sourcing profitable on both sides of the ledger." Jason Mark Anderman, Vice President and Senior Counsel, General Counsel's Organization, American Express

“Lawyers aren’t alone in struggling to base their business model on value delivered to the paying client …doctors don’t bill on patient outcomes, clerics don’t get compensated from the collection plate for net souls saved or measurable progress of the earthly Kingdom, and educators resist tying pay to student achievement. But lawyers and firms face increasing competitive dynamics without the nature or degree of structural protections that insulate other learned professions from harsh competition. In The Value-Able Law Firm, Steve Lauer and Ken Vermilion continue to provide path-breaking thought leadership and actionable recommendations to address what every lawyer running a firm should want … selling and delivering what the client wants. This is a must-read with plenty of must-do's for lawyers feeling the competitive heat, and equally useful for purchasers of legal services in understanding and articulating what they value.” Chester Paul Beach, retired as Corporate Vice President, International Trade Compliance, United Technologies Corporation

“In my position at a global law firm, I spend a great deal of time pondering the question of the "value" of the service that the firm provides its clients in a wide variety of contexts. I agree with Steve Lauer and Ken Vermilion that this term is a bewildering one that is often misapplied, though widely used, in our industry. The Value-Able Law Firm constitutes a great description of what the value equation is of the "legal package." I applaud the authors for this contribution to the literature. Stephen Allen, Head of Legal Services Delivery, Hogan Lovells International LLP

The Value-Able Law Department

(Ark Group 2010) Order it here.

Using an approach that introduced the concept of value-related qualities, Steve explored the means of organizing an in-house law department and that department's use of external law-related resources in order to achieve the greatest benefit from their aggregate efforts for the company.

Reader’s comments about The Value-Able Law Department

“As law continues to modernize, the focus is shifting from the expertise of individual lawyers to the value of the legal work to the client. Steve Lauer has worked with some of the most sophisticated legal departments in delivering superior value, and has provided a superb and workable roadmap for all lawyers to better manage value. Steve shows how in-house and firm lawyers will need to collaborate better to achieve their mutual goals.” Paul Lippe, Chief Executive Officer, Legal OnRamp

The Value-Able Law Department portends the almost certain changing future for the corporate legal market and the service requirements of corporate clients. In-house counsel and the law firms who serve them can either ride the wave of change if properly prepared or be caught in its swirl if they fail to see the wave coming from the horizon. Mr. Lauer’s book, with its pertinent case studies, provides the reader with insight about the coming change and the skills to participate and thrive in the new world order where lawyers must deliver true value when providing services to their corporate clients. These skills and the other information imparted in Lauer’s book allows counsel to ride the front of the wave above their less-aware competition.” Madeline Cahill-Boley, Managing Partner, Sullivan Hill Lewin Rez & Engel

“[T]he book is full of real-life case study examples from corporate law departments/in house lawyers. This is more like a business text where there is a problem and a fact pattern/discussion of the actions of the in-house lawyer/department. This is valuable because there is a discussion, anchored/supported by real world examples of how someone took action.” Christopher Sheridan, Associate Corporate Counsel, Hyland Software

It should be purchased by those who wish to sell to inside counsel because it provides insights into the mindsets, processes and techniques utilized by the buyers of legal services. Steve Bell, National Director of Sales, Womble, Carlyle, Sandridge & Rice, PLLC

Value-Related Fee Arrangements

(Ark Group 2012) Order it here.

In this volume, Steve expanded on the concept of value-related qualities and applies that lexicon and framework to designing fee arrangements more closely tailored to a company's perspective on the value that it recognizes from its outside lawyers' work on its behalf.

Reader’s comments about Value-Related Fee Arrangements

“We all need to achieve at least one and eventually all three Value Challenge targets: reduce the client’s total legal costs by 25% (in-house and outside combined), provide near certainty in cost, and significantly improve outcomes. Steve Lauer’s book on value-related fee arrangements contains some very useful tools and insights and provides a good foundation for accomplishing this, and it is nicely written from the perspectives of both the clients and the law firms.” Michael Roster, former managing partner of Morrison & Foerster’s Los Angeles office, former general counsel of Stanford University and Golden West Financial and currently co-chair of the ACC Value Challenge steering committee

Managing Your Relationship with External Counsel

(Ark Group 2009) (out of print)

This book explored how to manage a company's relationship with the organizations (law firms, alternative legal service providers, etc.) that serve its law-related needs in order to maximize the value that the company realizes from their efforts on its behalf.

In 1999, Steve wrote Conditional, Contingent and Other Alternative Fee Arrangements (Monitor Press 1999) (out of print)

In this white paper, Steve explored numerous fee arrangements (both successful and unsuccessful) that were not based entirely on the amount of time that companies' external lawyers devoted to their assignments, as well as the reasons for their success or failure.  Taking note of the lessons from the unsuccessful and successful examples in the paper, lawyers can align outside lawyers' efforts with their clients' business-oriented goals by designing fee arrangements more closely calibrated to how the company's operations benefit from the lawyers' efforts.

Corporate Compliance Practice Guide: The Next Generation of Compliance

(Basri ed.) (LexisNexis 2009)

Steve wrote chapter 9 of this treatise, titled "Setting Up an Ethics and Compliance Hotline/Helpline"

Tipping Point: Transformation and Innovation in the Legal Department

(Ark Group 2019)

Steve and Ken Vermilion co-authored chapter 9 of this book, titled The valued legal department and legal ops - a strategy for success, in which they explained the benefits available by applying legal operations to the challenge of increasing the value of the legal service delivered to a company by its in-house and outside lawyers and related professionals.

In March 2012, the Association of Corporate Counsel released ACC Value Challenge Practices for the Small Law Department (InfoPAK 2012), an InfoPAK for which Steve was the primary author:

In this publication, Steve described many examples of how small law departments and the law firms with which they work had increased the business impact of their aggregate efforts on companies' behalf in order to maximize the value of their work for the client.

The Future of Legal Services: Expert Analysis

(Ark Group 2011)

Steve wrote chapter Expert Analysis 8 ("Combined forces affecting in-house counsel relationships") of this volume, in which he explored how the in-house bar has developed and how it has increasingly impacted the legal profession, as well as how it will likely continue to do so.

Building A World-Class Compliance Program: Best Practices and Strategies for Success

(Biegelman) (John Wiley & Sons, Inc. 2008)

Steve wrote chapter 11 of this book, titled "Recognizing Compliance Excellence: Premier, Inc. and Winning the Baldrige Award"