Holland & Knight staff set to lose pay and jobs

US firm Holland & Knight’s cost-cutting exercise continues apace as it imposes swinging pay cuts for lawyers and other staff members

Last week the firm admitted that 60 lawyers and 170 other staff were to go (The Lawyer, 6 May).
Although managing partner Robert Feagin would not specify how much salaries would be lowered by, it is understood that some people could lose up to 20 per cent. Feagin said that some positions had been reclassified and the employees affected would thus lose some income.
He argued that the firm had to respond to the pressures of a slower economy and that the changes were necessary to ensure that it remained competitive after undertaking a massive programme of expansion through a series of mergers. Profitability had been diluted as a result and the firm had to look closely at its outgoings.
The staff cull was the most dramatic outcome of a structural review conducted by Deloitte & Touche. Other cost-saving changes include reducing overtime, postponing spending on technology, cutting back on travel expenditure and cancelling the firm’s annual lawyers’ get-together.