Accenture may be narrowing its list of outside counsel that it uses in 2007, and those firms who haven’t increased their diversity over the last two years may be the first to go, as a recent article in Corporate Counsel points out:
"Having already grilled its outside counsel about their diversity once, Accenture is preparing to test them again. And this time the consulting giant is threatening to dump law firms that don’t come up with the right answers.
Two years ago, New York-based Accenture asked the 40 firms on its preferred provider list to fill out a lengthy diversity questionnaire. The company asked for the number of ethnic minorities, gays and lesbians, and women at the entire firm, on management committees, among student and lateral recruits, and among those attorneys working on Accenture matters.
Each firm also had to describe how well it was retaining its minority lawyers, whether it had any recruiting and retention programs for them, and how it measured the effectiveness of those programs.
In 2007, Accenture will resurvey its outside counsel to see how much they’ve improved. Firms that haven’t made changes to improve their diversity will be dropped from the company’s roster.
"We want to know if these people we are spending money on are dealing with diversity," said Accenture in-house lawyer Paul Chadha. "And we want them to know that ‘if you don’t improve, we won’t work with you.’ "