Rees Morrison (the law department management guru) has some tips to help your law department work more effectively with outside counsel by developing effective outside counsel guidelines:
No self-respecting law department lacks its statement of principles and operating rules for its law firms…Here are ideas for how you might improve your guidelines.
1. Shorten them. Even if you keep all of the content and structure of your existing guidelines, you can make them briefer. Cut verbiage.
2. Simplify the language and be direct in your writing. Guidelines are not the place for complicated circumlocutions. “Bill us each month if your fees on the matter exceed $1,000.”
3. Delete all the high sounding, throat clearing. Guidelines that go on and on about the glories of collaborative achievement and world-class, cost-effective productivity waste trees. Partners skim them and look for the meat.
Read all of the tips on outside counsel guidelines at Law Department Management: Nine ways to improve your guidelines for outside counsel.