LSSA LexisNexis Review of Attorneys’ Profession in 2016
- The majority of respondents were sole practitioner or small firms. 72% have under 10 professional and support staff and fewer than 5 fee-earners. 52% of respondents were partners/directors.
- Boutique/niche firms tend to have 1 to 2 free-earners. Larger firms are more generalist.
- Top practice areas: Conveyancing, commercial and family law.
Ownership by race of respondents
Fully white owned – 60%
Fully black owned – 11%
Mixed ownership – 20%
Ownership by gender of respondents
Fully male owned – 53%
Fully female owned – 20%
Mixed ownership – 27% In these firms 50% or less of the decision makers are female.
Online on PC/laptop — 91%
Print — 47%
Mobile — 20%
86% of respondents said access to the internet is not a barrier to doing online research.
Only a small percentage of recipients bill more than R3 000 per hour (page 31)
25% of respondents appear in the High Court (52% only brief advocates)
Choice of advocate
Long-standing relationship 57%
Word of mouth 21%
Transformational imperatives 6%
24% of respondents brief black advocates frequently.
22% of respondents brief female advocates frequently.
Since 2014, 10% more firms are planning to invest in marketing.
30% of firms plan to invest in technology soon.
Since 2014, there is a 19% increase in online services as a growth imperative for the firm.
92% of firms indicate that smarter use of technology is important for growth.
64% identify social media as important for growth (15% more than in 2014).