Anne Heaviside, a managing director and legal recruiter with ELR in Houston, joins us on today's show. Anne talks about the lateral legal market, work from home policies, and top tips for candidates. Her firm and roleELR Legal is in the Tanglewood area of HoustonSpecializes in 2-10 year lawyers in T
Publish Date: Nov 08, 2021
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Anne Heaviside, a managing director and legal recruiter with ELR in Houston, joins us on today's show. Anne talks about the lateral legal market, work from home policies, and top tips for candidates. Her firm and roleELR Legal is in the Tanglewood area of HoustonSpecializes in 2-10 year lawyers in Texas law firms / mostly Houston / mostly Big Law (AmLaw 200)Got her start practicing law, including at McGlinchy Stafford. She then took over the recruiting role there before stepping out to work as a legal recruiter on the outsideLegal Market Update2019 was good as was the start of 2020COVID put everything on hold until about November 2020November things opened up, especially in the Big Law corporate world (Can you say SPACs?!)Capital MarketsM&APrivate EquityDebt Finance2021 only got hotterBig signing bonuses ($10k-$50k)There are not enough corporate associates in Texas for the demandThe need is new work. Clients have more demand from Big Law firms and there aren't enough 3-6 year associates with the necessary skills.Record number of lateral moves in Houston and DallasPlus new Big Law firms opening up in AustinSeptember hit and those associates have worked between 2000-2800 hours already in 2021 and are no longer taking recruiter calls; they are waiting for their year-end bonus before lateralling at the start of 2022.Real Estate an Executive Comp/Employee Benefits have gotten hotBig Law litigation is cool/slowLitigation boutiques are hiring but they are super picky (think Big Law requirements)Davis Polk raised the first year starting salaries from $190k to $205k and Cravath (the previous trend setter) matched (as have several others now). Has led to some mid/small firms rethink their comp.Big Law v. Small LawCorporate v. LitigationHardly any small/mid corporate firmsNo sign of slowing down in 2022In this market, small/mid associates and in-house lawyers CAN make a move to Big LawWork/Office ArrangementsFlexibility is here to stay (in Big Law)How flexible is the questionAmLaw 50 is still at home in Houston or back in the office by choiceMultiple office firms across the county/internationally have a hard time making different policies for different officesAmLaw 200 will likely move to a 3/2 (three days in the office and two at home)Though new associates will likely be required to be in the office for the training/mentorship/culture/etc.Mid-levels and Senior associates will likely push for even moreSmall firmsWill likely have more variety of policiesMore likely to be in the office than the Big Law firmsChallenges to flex workLack of integration within the firmWhat happens when promotion time comes or the work slows down and layoffs are required? Will the person who has been at home be disadvantaged versus the one who has been in the office?How can we replicate the in-office benefits and experiences that we don't want to lose?Advice to Lawyers On The Lateral MarketThis is not OCI anymoreNot tell me about yourself or what practice to you want to go inThere is a specific need they are looking to fillSo firm needs to understand exact experienceIf you have stellar academics (great grades at a great law school), list that first. Otherwise start with your law firm experience3-6 bullets under each position communicating exactly what you doYour role in what types of deals/casesYou can take out the bullets under internships or clerkships if you need spaceIf you have been practicing for at least 3+ years you need a deal sheetKnow as much about the job you are applying for as possible so you can tailor your experience to the needLitigators definitely need a writing sampleGPA on the resume if it was at least a 3.2 (Big Law still cares even for laterals)Big Law resumes don't need interest sections, but small law firms will often like to see itIf you do have it, make the interests unique, specificFinal ThoughtIf you are going to use a recruiter, look for those who have contacts at the firms you are interested inRecruiters can help navigate some tough conversations and issues that come up (conflicts, negotiating offers, etc.)Once your resume gets submitted to a firm (whether directly or through a recruiter), another recruiter won't be able to help you for at least 6-12 months at that firm. So be mindful.Pros/Cons about using one or multiple recruiters, but one tends to work better for the candidate.Candidates should give thought to whether they want to use a recruiter BEFORE they start doing anything in the process; this allows for any recruiter to best help you.Recruiters can give insight on comp