By Rob Mattern
Back in March of this year, we predicted changes and trends the results of the 2018 Mattern Cost Recovery Survey would reveal. At that time, we got our crystal ball out and made the following predictions that the Survey would show:
- An increase in the “billable actually billed” percentage which indicates less client pushback and decreasing attorney write-offs.
- A “softening” in traditional areas such as black & white and color copies.
- A renewed aggressiveness for modern areas of recovery such as prints and scans, lit support and e-discovery.
Before we delve into the details on whether our predictions were correct, let’s lay the groundwork for the analysis with a few definitions:
Billable percentage: The percentage of an item charged to a billable client matter versus a non-billable (overhead) number.
Billable actually billed: The percentage of a billable item actually billed to a client.
Actual billed that is paid: The percentage of a billable item that is actually billed to a client and paid by the client.
Net realization: The net of the above numbers.
Black & White and Color Copies: Dramatic Drop in Average Rate
While 93% of firms are still recovering black & white and color copies — which is consistent with the 2016 results — there was a dramatic drop (28%) in the average rate charged to clients from ($.18 to $.13) on black & white copies.
Read the full article in Law Journal Newsletters Accounting and Financial Management for Law Firms