ALPMA 2014 December E-Newsletter

In this edition:

From the President

Andrew Barnes, CFO, Legal Lantern Group

Hello everyone. I am not sure whether I should be surprised or thankful that we have almost reached the end of another year. No matter what we do in our day-to-day lives, the end of the year always seems to land on us unannounced! So when it came time to contribute to our December newsletter, my first reaction was … surprise!

We have had another enormous year at ALPMA. Our success with the annual Summit remains the most prominent achievement over the course of the year but we see the Summit as the culmination of many other projects and key initiatives which make ALPMA a crucial membership for law firm management professionals. Our monthly lunchtime seminar programs continue to set the tone and added to this are the the establishment of the ALPMA On Demand Learning Centre and the introduction of our Leading Your Firm (LYF) program. We are excited by the LYF program as we expect it will extend our networks and resources beyond major centres to reach regional and smaller law firms and enable managers to access the same materials wherever they may sit. With the expansion into NZ and WA, this caps a pretty big year. We now have more than 100 L&D events scheduled for the next 12 months, a significant commitment by any measure.

We remain focused on our core promise to members. We are very proud of the membership engagement results and continue to not only grow our numbers, but to have more and more members wanting to be involved beyond just attending seminars or events. We have a great team of contractors who ensure we tick over on a daily basis but we also have more than 50 volunteers across Australia and New Zealand who sit on various committees and provide the drive to continue our improvement and growth. We will always welcome new contributors to our committees! We remain a little shy or our current membership target so if you are not a member, it is never too late to join.

Our sponsors, at all levels, are a key factor in ensuring our programs are delivered as well as they are. At ALPMA, we believe we offer enormous opportunity to get in front of decision makers (purchasers) within firms and we remain truly appreciative to those companies who see our value and contribute to our Association. The proactive relationship we have developed with many of these partners over many years has enhanced the experience on both sides of the fence. Our successful sponsors do not write a cheque and sit in the corner – they become part of ALPMA. I thank our partners for another great year and look forward to working with you again in 2015.

Each year we have people come and go from our variety of volunteers roles across the Association. There are too many to name individually here but I do thank my predecessor as President, Tony Bleasdale, and the retiring Board and branch members for their contributions and I know these guys will remain friends of ALPMA wherever their careers may take them. Thanks guys and hope to see you at an ALPMA event again soon.

In closing, I again thank our members, partners, volunteers and contractors for helping ALPMA be what it has become (and what it continues to strive to be). I wish you and your families well for the festive season and hope you have a safe and prosperous 2015.

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Now is a great time to join ALPMA!

If you haven’t yet taken the plunge and signed-up to join our close-knit community – then do it now!

There has never been a better time to get on-board with ALPMA, with membership now just $192.50 (incl GST) for regional members and Associates and $255.75 (incl GST) for full members for the rest of the financial year (to June 30, 2015). And there are additional discounts for companies who support multiple ALPMA members.

Becoming an ALPMA member will deliver tremendous benefits for you and your practice.

As a member, you can come for free to our practice management seminars, Leading Your Firm webinars and live-streamed events, helping you build your personal and professional network and learn from industry leaders and subject-matter experts. You also enjoy free access to more than 130 seminars and webinars on-demand, providing instant access to expert advice on managing and leading your practice. Your company benefits as you apply the practical advice and insights gained in the office and leverage your new connections.

Your membership also supports our efforts to provide a strong voice and practical resources for all Australasian law firm managers and leaders on issues central to the successful operation of your law firm or legal department.

Join-up now

We’d love to welcome you as a member.

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Save these 2015 dates!


United Leadership
Graham Winter, Think One Team
Live-stream broadcast from Adelaide to more than 22 locations across ANZ & online
Leading Your Firm Program. Free for members, $99 (incl GST) for non-members.

9 to 11

2015 ALPMA Summit  
Wednesday 9 September to Friday, 11 September, 2015
Gold Coast Conference & Exhibition Centre, Queensland, Australia

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Benchmark your firm's financial performance

Free for all Australian law firms

Open until 5 January, 2015

ALPMA and Crowe Horwath are pleased to invite Australian* firms to participate for free our annual financial performance benchmarking study.

Benchmark your performance across eight key measures of financial health. Interactively compare your results to similar firms. Use this knowledge drive improvement across your firm and anticipate your financial tomorrow.

Participate now!

*Please note, we are planning on extending this study to New Zealand next year! Stay tuned for more details on this.

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Check out the ALPMA FY14 Annual Report

The ALPMA Annual Report offers an overview of the key activities and achievements of ALPMA in 2013-14 and provides insight into where we are heading as a professional membership association for law firm leaders and managers committed to 'adding value to the business of law'.

Highlights included:

  • Establishment of our presence in NZ, led by our new NZ committee and secretariat
  • Continued membership growth, and the introduction of multi-member discounts for firms who support multiple ALPMA members
  • Development of a comprehensive Learning & Development strategy, including the establishment of the ALPMA Legal Practice Management Learning & Development Framework
  • Created the Leading Your Firm program for smaller and regional law firm leaders and managers
  • Successfully conducted 50 practice management seminars in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth.
  • Attracted more than 200 delegates to the 2013 ALPMA Summit: “Law Firm 3.0 – Leading the New Normal” in Sydney and launching new research into the Impact of the Changing Legal Landscape on Australasian Law Firms, with LexisNexis.

Read the 2013-14 ALPMA Annual Report

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Marketing & BD at law firms research results

Most Australasian law firms are struggling to develop an effective business development and marketing program - despite recognising that this is pivotal to achieving their firm’s growth ambitions, according to the results of research by ALPMA and Julian Midwinter & Associates.

151 respondents from 149 firms across Australia and New Zealand completed the inaugural “ALPMA/JMA Taking the Pulse of Business Development and Marketing In Australasian Law Firms” research, conducted online in September, 2014. “Taking the Pulse” is the first in depth Australasian research study of its kind.

“The results paint a stark picture of the current state of marketing and business development within Australasian law firms” ALPMA President, Andrew Barnes said.

“There is a real disconnect between anticipated revenue growth and how firms intend to achieve this growth. It’s hard to see how many of these firms will actually hit those revenue targets with the lack of planning and limited resources they have in place.” Amy Burton-Bradley said.

Key findings of the research included:

  • The majority of firms (65 percent) forecast revenue growth this financial year.
  • Three-quarters of respondents rate their marketing and business development function as either ‘under-developed’ (45 percent) or merely ‘adequate’ (32 percent). Only four respondents rated their firm’s marketing and business development as ‘sophisticated’.
  • Only 38 percent of respondents thought their firm appropriately resourced the marketing and business development function, although 55 percent of firms have a dedicated marketing and BD person or team.
  • Despite this, the vast majority of firms (80 percent) say that hiring additional marketing or business development staff was their firm’s least important approach to achieving growth.
  • In terms of achieving their growth strategy, 95% of firms claimed that the effectiveness of their individual lawyers’ marketing and business development activities was important.
  • Yet more than half of firms (56 percent) do not invest in business development and marketing skills training for lawyers, and nearly half of all firms (48 percent) do not have an overarching firm-wide marketing and business development plan in place

Download the full research report

Read the results media release

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New ALPMA On-Demand Learning

Leveraging Technology for Profitability & Innovation
2014 Summit Masterclass Workshop On-Demand - $99
Presented by Craig Rispin, Futurist and Business Innovator

Thinking Outside the Square: Hive Legal's Innovative Business Model
Presented by Jodie Baker, Managing Director, Hive Legal, ALPMA/Telstra 2014 Thought Leadership Award Winners.

View More

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