We invest in client relationships by providing value beyond the delivery of legal services. From assistance with vendor selection to educational training and collaboration on pro bono projects, we leverage every available firm resource for the benefit of our clients.
Pro Bono Partnerships
Ballard Spahr provides an average of 40,000 hours of pro bono legal services each year to individuals and organizations in need, making us one of the top firms in the country for pro bono work. Many of those projects are handled in partnership with clients, including Comcast, Wawa, Exelon, and DuPont. We work side-by-side with in-house legal teams on efforts to help homeless and disabled people apply for benefits, on child advocacy and immigration cases, and in clinics that provide free estate planning to first responders. Our program gives clients access to a wide variety of pro bono projects and allows them to participate at any level they wish.
We regularly hold customized CLE training sessions so clients can learn to provide the pro bono work that best aligns with their priorities. We also help clients develop pro bono programs and provide ongoing guidance on structure, policy, and project selection. Partnering with clients on pro bono projects gives us a chance to share our values, work together as a team, and get to know each other as people.
Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives
Diversity and inclusion are core values at Ballard Spahr. We are committed to creating a vibrant community where the needs and contributions of people from all backgrounds are valued and integrated into every level of the firm. Our Chief Diversity Officer works closely with our lawyers to build diverse legal teams and ensure the effective integration, development, and engagement of all lawyers on client matters.
Our diversity and inclusion efforts also extend beyond the walls of the firm. We partner with clients to support diversity and inclusion in our workplaces and in the legal industry. We host informal networking events where we share best practices and collaborate on the most effective ways to recruit diverse law students and create diverse teams. We have partnered with clients to offer secondments and joint training programs to diverse associates.
In addition, our Chief Diversity Officer works directly with clients to support their diversity goals—helping them structure and implement diversity and inclusion programs, meet their pipeline goals, quantify success, and communicate their mission to internal stakeholders.
Strategic partnership with a client begins with understanding that client’s business. One way to do that—and also leverage the resources of the firm for the benefit of a client—is through a robust secondment program. Ballard Spahr has seconded top-notch partners and associates to clients in industries including financial services, energy, and manufacturing. Our secondments have ranged from six weeks to one year. Our lawyers come away from these assignments with enhanced legal skills, a broader perspective, and a more comprehensive understanding of the client, its business, and its in-house team—which benefits everyone involved.
AdvanceLaw is a program designed to provide information about law firms to in-house counsel and help them identify firms that set the bar for quality, client service, efficiency, and innovation. AdvanceLaw works with participating firms and in-house General Counsel to actively solicit feedback and to formally measure and share information on law firm performance. Using this feedback, participating law firms can continuously improve the quality of service and enhance the value that they provide to clients. More than 100 General Counsel at leading, multinational corporations take part in the program. Those General Counsel help select participating law firms.
Ballard Spahr was chosen for inclusion based on the quality of its legal work, its cost effectiveness, the strength of its long-term client relationships, and its commitment to diversity and pro bono services. AdvanceLaw—and the inside counsel who drive the program—are committed to transparency. Its performance feedback system uses data and client evaluations to measure achievement, quality, value, and efficiency.
Client Relationship Development Team
Our clients want legal advisers who understand their business, the sectors in which they operate, and the impact that market developments might have on their organization. Our business development professionals serve as partners to our lawyers and client-focused teams, providing them with valuable business intelligence related to the industries and the clients we serve. They look for market trends as well as business and legal developments that might present risk, challenges, or opportunities for a client—and make sure clients are made aware.
The team also collaborates with the attorneys to ensure that we are effectively educating clients on evolving legal issues. The team assists in producing educational offerings such as webinars, legal alerts, and customized CLE presentations, as well as sharing information through various social media platforms.
Internally, the team facilitates information-sharing within practice groups and strives to connect the dots for the lawyers when determining all the ways Ballard Spahr can provide solutions to challenges a client might face.
Training and CLE Program
Ballard Spahr is known for the strength and breadth of its CLE program. Each year, we provide dozens of programs that deliver comprehensive, up-to-the-minute information on legal industry developments and outline specific ways to improve the practice of law. In addition to the programs we provide at our 15 offices nationwide, we also develop programs specific to clients, many of which we deliver at the client's place of business.
Other Professional Collaborations
Our goal is to leverage every available resource at the firm to benefit our clients, including the experience and expertise of our non-lawyer professionals. Our technology, financial management, pricing, and project management professionals work directly with client legal operations personnel to assist with matters such as the evaluation, selection, and implementation of e-billing and document management systems and vendors, training, and the review and design of key business processes.