Showing posts with label legal research. Show all posts
Showing posts with label legal research. Show all posts

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

CONCERNS – LEGAL OFFSHORING TO INDIA.

The advent of legal off-shoring came out of the crying need to cut costs. We understand the reasons of various giant in electronics, automobile & other sectors opening their industries across the border with motive to transfer the technology for developing the products at cheaper rates. Many big brands of the world had opened their units in countries like China, India with the sole motive to produce the units at lower cost. One does not understand as to why concerns were not raised for those, off-shoring of huge industries out of their countries.

Let me examine it from the view point of consumer living in developed country. Mr. ‘X’ living in a developed country wants to purchase an article. He gets two options i.e. pay ‘A1’ for the said article being produced & sold in his country or pay ‘A2’ for the same article but being produced in other country & sold in his country. The different questions arising in his mind for choosing one of them can be put like this.

A. What is the difference between A1 & A2?
B. Is there any quality variation between the articles produced in different countries?

Mr. ‘X’ would prefer buying the article in which he pays less and gets the quality product. As I understand Mr. ‘X’ would buy article by paying ‘A2’ as the cost would be quite less. I am sure Mr. ‘X’ did not think of the loss of job in his country if he buys the article produced in other country. No eyebrows were raised for the export of goods produced by developing countries to developed countries.

But incase of export of services by developing countries to developed countries the logics become different. However, we still think of loss of jobs while talking about offshore industry. The concerns raised for outsourcing of services get a national touch when we try to understand and justify the outsourcing. The real concerns like quality, confidentiality are dominated by the issue of Nationalism. The decisive factors determining the issue of off-shoring/ outsourcing are:

a) The need of outsourcing which in turn is influenced by following things:
i. Cost effectiveness
ii. Non-availability of resources
iii. Time Zone Benefits

b) The availability of provider /people to give services depending on the following:

i. Being compatible in providing the services
ii. Availability of resources
iii. Capable of delivering quality services
iv. Breaking the language & accent barriers

The Push & Pull factors match up to determine and resolve the concerns of this infant outsourcing/off-shoring industry.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

IS LEGAL PROCESS OFFSHORING AN EXPORT OF SERVICES?

The cross borders issues generally prevail in the development of countries. This reminds me of an elderly man’s saying “The man on latch of a door control the flow of air from outside to inside & vice versa”. The import & export of goods is decided by different factors like the availability, demand and need. Country intends to export the goods looking into the fact of the ability to produce those goods & get them consumed in other International markets. The motive of export is to earn foreign exchange.

In case of offshoring the services cross border the organisation do not directly earn. However, the cost of those services in-house looks expensive which encourages its outsourcing. Offshoring can be a symbolic way of export when we consider the savings as also forming part of earning. In this services are off-shored to get the same being delivered at low prices. I am not trying to show the offshoring of jobs but the offshoring of services which technocrat offers to one’s clients.

A very simple hypothetical situation can be used to understand the balance of exchequer between two countries. Country ‘A’ exports various high profile and expensive goods to country ‘B’. In terms country ‘A’ needs to settle the balance of payment with country ‘B’ but the same always remain tilted towards country ‘A’. Country ‘B’ has got an excellent pool of people who can deliver good number of services to country ‘A’. This can be the best way to make up balance of payments as far as country ‘A’ & country ‘B’ are concern. Logically the export of goods from country ‘A’ to country ‘B’ can be matched up by export of services by country ‘B’ to country ‘A’.

Is it the way to conclude that export of services is also near to export of goods.

CAN I OFFSHORE WITHOUT REDUCING MY BILLING.

Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) got the boom due to the cost cutting. There could be different possibilities of sharing the benefits arising out of LPO viz:-

a) The benefit completely passes to the person directly offshoring the services.
b) Sharing the benefits between the person offshoring the services & whose work is being offshore.
c) Intelligent offshoring:

The offshoring industry has been passing through turbulent times as far as Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) is concerned. As far as offshoring of calling is concerned, there were no hindrances in its growth. The Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) could grow as the benefit of cost cutting passed only to the organization directly outsourcing the same. There were no constraints on the organization except the primary concerns.

As we talk about Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO), its growth was not many folds yet it grew. The reason of outsourcing had been the benefit of cost but constraint came from various angles like lack of growth in the said industry, difficulty in transferring & sharing knowledge based activities. The only part of the KPO industry which could develop consisted of IT offshoring which included developing, maintaining & repairing the software & hardware systems. In a way the growth of IT offshoring catalyzed the birth & growth of Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO).

It can well be understood that the offshoring of Legal & Paralegal services consists of:-

I Offshoring Paralegal Services including Legal Transcription, Filling of Forms etc.
II Offshoring Secretarial Services including maintaining relations with clients, writing letters to them, raising bills etc.
II Offshoring Projects of services like document review etc.
IV Offshoring provisional working of attorneys.
V Offshoring the monotonous part of core Legal working.

All the time the main cause of concern for the law firms & attorneys have been that the offshoring in a way reduces their own billing. The most frequent Question asked to me by attorneys & partners of the law firms from UK & US have been, “CAN I OFFSHORE WITHOUT EFFECTING MY BILLING?” My answer had been “YES.”

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Legal Research Outsourcing: Our Means and Your Ends

video

Among the series of Webinars being hosted by Draft n Craft, Rajni Minhas, Assistant Legal Head, held a Webinar on Legal Research Outsourcing: Our means and your ends.

The purpose of this webinar was to question the paradigm shift in the needs, means and results of Legal Research in wake of integrating world. After holistically looking at the intricacies of the service, the webinar aims to understand and analyse the regulatory and ethical aspects of the same.

Topics Covered in the web cast were:

o Legal Research outsourcing Needs
o Multi jurisdiction research
o Legal Research tools & deliverables
o Memo Writing
o Ethical and Regulatory aspects of Legal Research outsourcing.
o Issues of Confidentiality and Quality
o Process Flow
o Pricing the Legal Research