Camerons gets tough on billing targets

Camerons gets tough on billing targetsCMS Cameron McKenna has introduced tougher billing targets for partners in a bid to improve the cashflow from recession-hit clients.

The firm has introduced two-monthly targets for ­billable hours and cash ­collection. ;Previously ­partners were assessed on quarterly performance.

Managing partner Duncan Weston said the move was designed to energise the business during a difficult period, adding: “This simply reflects market ­situation and brings more discipline and focus to cash management by having more ­regular target dates.”

The move follows other firms’ efforts to improve lock-up ;performance. ­Eversheds has introduced a ‘red card’ scheme, which sees partners given a yellow card if bills are sent out on time but are not paid. If billing targets are still not met, partners are given a red card and equity distributions can be withheld for up to two ­quarters.

Camerons recently overhauled its internal accounting system. The firm now uses a matrix system, ­pioneered by Weston in Eastern Europe, that allows practice group managers to analyse the performances of individual sectors and the lawyers working in them.