Scaling companies often over or under do it with their legals. Doing DIY with cheap/free templates, platforms and other sticking plasters until something goes wrong. Or they go too far the other way, using expensive law firm lawyers for everything, who take a zero risk approach that’s often too expensive and impractical when you’re trying to grow.
A good in-house lawyer, on the other hand, is experienced at setting up and running the legal function. They manage legal strategy and the budget, prioritise what’s important to reduce risk, and allow the rest of the team to get on with their jobs knowing they’re covered. They pro-actively manage legal and compliance using the right people, processes and technology to ensure costs are kept under control.
So why hire a fractional in-house lawyer?
1. It’s the best way to build a cost effective efficient legal function and manage the legal budget
A good in-house lawyer will set up and run your legal function (including ‘legalops’) to manage the budget, i.e. put in place processes for risk management across the business – for sales, marketing, tech, people, data, etc. They will do the BAU, put in place processes for self-service, and only use law firm specialists for high risk/value/complex work. A fractional resource can be used where this isn’t (yet) a full-time requirement.
2. It reduces risks
A fractional in-house lawyer regularly working in your business is best placed to identify legal risks that may threaten your business now or in the future and prioritise dealing with these.
3. It’s an investment in growth
Spending on the right resource now means savings in the future. Fractional in-house lawyers can offer strategic guidance across your legal requirements, including risk and compliance, contracts, intellectual property, and people matters. This helps you make informed decisions that align with your growth strategies. It also means that your company and staff are better prepared for future milestones like fundraising and exit so these run quickly and smoothly when the time comes.
4. It’s flexible
You can use fractional GCs on an as-needed basis, scaling up and down as needs fluctuate. Without the cost of a permanent hire this means it’s cost effective too.
5. It frees up your C-suite to do their day jobs
The management team often have legal on their ‘to do’ list until a full-time head of legal/in-house lawyer is hired. This means they can be stretched too thinly to manage it effectively, plus they don’t usually have the experience needed to deal with legal issues and risk. A fractional in-house lawyer will take the burden from your executive team so they can focus on their proper jobs.
6. It’s adaptable
Legal needs become more complex as a business grows. Fractional in-house lawyers can adapt quickly to these changing requirements making best use of the right people and technology available internally.
7. It delivers good value
A fractional in-house lawyer is a cost-effective option, an experienced lawyer without the cost of a full-time role (adding to headcount) or working with a law firm – (which is unlikely to meet the need in the right way).
8. It opens up access to a network
A fractional in-house lawyer typically has access to a valuable community having built their own network, resources and know-how from previous in-house roles. GCs also have experience managing other specialists and law firms so can help you get the best out of them when it’s appropriate to spend on such resources.
How can we help you?
To talk to us about how our fractional in-house lawyer service could help your business grow and for more information about how we work get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org