Annual Law Firms’ Survey 2019

Adapting to a new world

Welcome to our 2019 Law Firms' survey. Here you'll find section by section key themes and findings. Join the conversation on Twitter: #PwCLawSurvey


The theme for our 2019 Law Firms’ Survey is ‘Adapting to a new world’. The digital revolution continues to disrupt professional services, forcing these traditionally conservative organisations to evolve. Law firms need to adapt. To be successful, firms will need to invest in technology, and transform their workforces to drive productivity and innovation. At the same time, economic and political uncertainty means that law firms will also need to remain agile to find and exploit opportunities for growth.

Read our latest blogs on this year's Law Firms' Survey findings:

Explore the data

Use the tool below to explore the results of all of our law firms' surveys from 2009 to 2019. You can analyse and compare the performance of the Top 100 firms in the legal sector over the last 10 years. The explorer gives KPIs for law firms including fees per fee earner, profit margin, annual change in the size of Top 100 by fee income, and male vs female full equity partners.

Access the explorer below and download the full report to get a more detailed analysis of the 2019 results:

Explore by selecting a date and range
Fees per fee earner (£'000)
PEP (£'000)
margins (%)
Chargeable hours 1-5 years pqe
% spend on Business Support
& HR
IT revenue
& BD
Summary P&L
Staff costs*
Property costs
Other costs
Net profit margin
Male vs Female full equity partners (%)
Size of Top 100 by fee income
Top 10
Top 11-25
Top 26-50
Top 51-100
* inc. fixed share equity remuneration

A look to the future

What does the future hold for UK law firms? Unsurprisingly given the current political and economic uncertainty, firms are more cautious in their outlook this year. Most firms expect only modest fee income growth with profit improvement lagging in the short term. Technological change and Brexit uncertainty present key challenges, while new entrants and competition for talent are also threats.

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Kate Wolstenholme

Kate Wolstenholme

Leader, Law Firms Advisory Group, PwC United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)7740 923078