2015 ALPMA/Crowe Horwath New Zealand Legal Industry Financial Performance Benchmarking Study


New Zealand

Report released on

29 October 2015

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2015 NZ Legal Industry Financial Performance Benchmarking Study

The inaugural ALPMA/Crowe Horwath New Zealand Legal Industry Financial Performance Benchmarking study was conducted in July – August, 2015.  Thirty firms from across New Zealand participated in the study.

Results from the 2015 Financial Performance Benchmarking Survey of New Zealand include:

  • Operating profits before interest and taxes average $280,000 per equity partner.
  • The 10 best performers have an average operating profit of $568,000 per partner and a median operating profit of $396,000 per partner.
  • Non-equity partners’ salaries average $195,000.
  • The median work in progress (WIP) and debtor-days lockup amongst all firms surveyed is 86.36 days consisting of:
    • WIP days of 24.95
    • debtors days of 59.52
  • The average revenue generated per fee earner is around $352,000 and more than $705,000 per partner.
  • The 10 best performers average $1.017m per partner in revenue and the bottom 10 average $431,000 per partner.
  • Average gross margins* are 78.06 per cent and average net operating profits* 30.39 per cent.
  • Average return on capital employed is an impressive 61.46 per cent, seven per cent ahead of historic Australian results.

Are New Zealand law firms ready for a strong financial future?

This is the first year the survey has been conducted in New Zealand however Crowe Horwath and ALPMA have been running it in Australia for the past four years.  Thirty firms, representing a strong cross-section of NZ legal industry, participated in the inaugural research.

Open Measures

Participating firms also gain complimentary access to Open Measures, a proprietary Crowe Horwath online tool, to benchmark their firm’s performance against like firms.

In Open Measures (www.openmeasures.com) an operating unit can easily assess and review its performance against similar units across an organisation, over any time period. Visual score cards easily assess, track, rank and evaluate the performance of business units, franchises and divisions within an organisation or branches of a business.

Need more information?

If you have any questions about the research or need assistance, please contact our research team.

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