The HBR Law Department Survey

The leading source of benchmarking data for law departments

Legal Spending | Staffing | Operations | Technology | Outside Counsel Management | Compensation

Purchase the 2022 Survey

The 2022 HBR Law Department Survey is now available for purchase.

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Participate in the 2023 Survey

Registration to participate in the 2023 HBR Law Department Survey is now open.

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Purchase the 2021 Survey

The 2021 HBR Law Department Survey is now available.

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Value to Your Law Department

Unparalleled detail and insights. With over 400 metrics, our reports offer detailed legal staffing and spending breakouts by industry, region and company size.

Easy to access, customized online dashboards. Our reporting platform compares your organization’s data to industry benchmarks making it easy to review and share with leadership how your department stacks up.

Consultation from industry experts. More than just providing data, our goal is to help position your organization for success through a personalized review session with HBR experts and invitations to exclusive roundtable events.


years of historical benchmarking data


companies participate in the survey annually


of the participation base is in the Fortune 500


data cuts across industry, revenue, department size, and region.

Benchmarks From 400+ Available Metrics

Below are just a few of the 400+ data points from the latest cycle of our annual Law Department Survey, the leading source of benchmarking data for in-house teams to assess and measure performance.
How does your law department compare?


anticipate increased legal demand in the coming year


anticipate an increase in lawyer headcount in the coming year


ranked diversity as a top priority when selecting outside counsel


have developed a strategic technology roadmap to guide investments

Example benchmarks from 400+ available metrics

Legal spending

  • Legal spending as a % of revenue
  • Balance of inside vs. outside counsel spending
  • Allocation of fees by practice area

Outside counsel management

  • Average hourly rate for top billing firms
  • Outside counsel cost control initiatives
  • Use of alternative fee arrangements

Legal staffing + organizational structure

  • Lawyers per $B in revenue
  • Ratio of lawyers to support staff
  • Size and scope of legal ops team

Legal technology + ALSPs

  • Adoption of law department technology
  • Vendor use and satisfaction
  • Use of alternative legal service providers

Work demands + management

  • Challenges facing the law department
  • Methods for handling increased demand
  • Expected staffing and spending changes


  • Base salary, cash bonus, target cash
    bonus, and long term incentives by
    title/position for lawyers and law
    department staff

Online Reporting Platform

HBR’s dynamic online reporting platform provides easy access to survey result graphs and metrics. The reports also include enhanced visualizations that make it easier to share the results with your company leadership. Participants in our survey receive a significant discount on portal access with options to select data cuts by industry, revenue segment, and law department size.