Wondering Why Your Salary is Low?: Legal Recruiters Consider Reduced Commissions

All Rights Reserved

Hot off the presses:  Connecticut Law Tribune: Legal Recruiters Consider Reduced Commissions June 21, 2010.

The first line of the article reads: “Too many lawyers and not enough jobs.” If this isn’t a clear indication that you should not attend law school, then there are no more words.

“Some law firms are asking their recruiters to take a lower commission after the firm has hired an attorney recommended by the recruiter. Generally speaking, recruiters earn 25 percent of an attorney’s annual starting salary.” So many associates who are directly hired by firms already have taken a pay decrease compared to those associates of yesteryear. Now those who are hired through placement agencies will see a bigger decrease. The agencies who make their money from getting the attorney the job must succumb to market pressures that if their pay is decreased, imagine what the actual attorney’s decrease will be. We’re not even referring to contractual attorneys, just associates hired through agencies, so imagine even further what contractual attorneys will continue to deal with lest they find a new field of work.

“During economic shifts over the past 20 years, Seder said recruiters “have all been asked to go with the flow, and when the economy recovers, firms have gone back to paying competitive rates so they don’t miss out on the talent.” I guess you have already, some of the ‘top talent’ are contractual attorneys as well.

She added, “I think this is temporary.” Of course you do, you have the same mentality as the 0Ls who are trying to convince themselves of the same thing, and why should you not, you benefit from more law graduates which equate to more commissions in your pocket.

Typically, the request is to drop commissions from 25 to 20 percent, Seder said. But she added that companies seeking in-house counsel have not discussed such reductions.

During economic shifts over the past 20 years, Seder said recruiters “have all been asked to go with the flow, and when the economy recovers, firms have gone back to paying competitive rates so they don’t miss out on the talent.”

“The activity in Connecticut is a reflection of decisions nationwide, though recruiters say this is not a widespread phenomenon.” This has widespread implications for attorneys throughout the country.

“Part of the current challenge for recruiters is that firms simply aren’t in aggressive hiring modes. With no shortage of talented attorneys on the market, some firms see an opportunity to cut their costs with recruiters.” In other words, too many attorneys drives down the market pay and firms exploit this to their fiscal ability where attorneys are asked to do substantive work for fast-food prices.

“Also on the rise, Lord said, are instances where firms reach out to a recruiter while at the same time conducting their own in-house searches. That leads to recruiters spending time on a project only to discover that their efforts were wasted when the firm goes out and hires someone to fill a vacancy in a particular practice area.”  Hmmm and we just thought agencies were greedy. Attorneys are a commodity, the placement agency is the broker and the firm is the owner. Here’s my flow chart: Attorneys may not be needed: attorneys need money but have no job → attorney seeks assistance in finding a job through an agency → Agency is actually a broker → broker is still in business because they’re plenty of attorneys to present for sale = Attorneys have it rough.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: