Law Firms Have to Do Marketing, Too

But how? Law firms (like all of us) make many mistakes in marketing online. Law Crossing posted an article to help law firms in particular to boost their marketing efforts.

  1. Not using the internet to find clients– we should ALL be using the data we have freely at our fingertips!
  2. Not including practice area and location based keywords in target keyword phrases– if someone gets to your site and can’t figure out where you are and what you do in a matter of seconds, they will leave and go somewhere they can.
  3. Not having a Google Plus business page– the easiest way to increase exposure from searches (the searches are being done on Google, so taking advantage of Google SEO opportunities should be self-explanatory).
  4. Not engaging an audience on social media– build engagement with potential clients– a great way to set yourself apart when there are so many options.
  5. Blogging on the wrong topics– give your target audience relevant material, don’t just bombard them with irrelevant content.
  6. Not targeting synonyms and related keyword phrases– use both attorney AND lawyer, singular and plural!
  7. Not creating an AVVO profile– this is a legal directory with high authority in search, great for increasing traffic to your website and linking to specific attorneys.
  8. Not using video in your marketing efforts– they are much more personal than text (and Google owns YouTube, so videos will help your search ranking).

It is not an easy task to have great marketing for a law firm. But, many of these suggestions require a minimal amount of time and can go a long way.

Source: http://www.lawcrossing.com/employers/article/900047254/8-Marketing-Mistakes-Your-Law-Firm-Might-Be-Making/?utm_source=PC&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=t_18092–dt_20160706-cid_34795-Did_100200186-ad_Employer.Mined.Legal.All-logid_14555752

Who in the Denver legal market has raised salaries?

Since the inception of the new $180k salary scale for associates at Cravath, many firms across the U.S. have matched the scale, including a few in Denver. This puts pressure on others in the Denver market to follow suit, and while a few have, it remains to be seen who else will fall in line.

Thus far, Above the Law posted an article which lists the law firms to date who have adapted this salary scale. In Denver, they include:
Hogan Lovells
Morrison & Foerster
Gibson Dunn
Arnold & Porter
Wilmer Hale
Haynes & Boone
Baker Hostetler

We’ll most likely have updates to this list as this quarter comes to an end and into Q3 & Q4!

Source: http://abovethelaw.com/2016/06/salary-wars-scorecard-which-firms-have-announced-raises/

Legal hiring today: still a highly competitive market

Today, the legal market is as competitive as ever, and with a large supply of lawyers in the market, top tier law firms can be picky with their candidates. The New York Times reports a decline in jobs for low-skilled support workers at a time of expanding opportunities for highly educated workers.

One statistic in Texas noted as high as nearly one quarter of Texas law graduates are either unemployed or under-employed. Some law schools try to implement innovative programs to help attorneys advance their own professional advancement as much as possible to be as competitive they can when they enter the market.

Law schools also encourage students to develop their networking and relationship-building skills, because without those skills, a highly educated lawyer in an over-saturated market is still likely to be left high and dry without a well-paying job.

Regardless of attorneys position within their legal careers, it is vital to maintain a key network in order to be able to take advantage of new opportunities if the situation calls for it. No matter what, because of such a competitive legal market, attorneys of all caliber need to be aptly prepared to navigate the rough waters of the legal market if need be.

Source: http://www.dallasnews.com/business/headlines/20160422-nearly-one-fourth-of-texas-law-grads-are-unemployed-or-underemployed.ece

New Strategies to Narrow Big Law Gender Gap

The latest report from the National Association of Women Lawyers came out last week, showing that the gender pay gap among equity partners has widened.

. Some of the key findings include:

-Women equity partnership ranks have barely risen in 10 years.

-Men far outnumber women among lateral equity partners.

-The gender gap in pay for equity partners has widened.

-Women logged more hours but got paid less.

-Among firms that provided data about the gender of the top 10 highest revenue generators, only 12% were women.

Although women are still underrepresented in the executive level of the legal industry, an article in The American Lawyer contends that partners and practice heads are eager to seek out strategies to alleviate this gap. Teams are going to work together in a new strategy, a hackathon– to come up with proposals to “better recruit, advance and retain experienced women in midsized and large law firms”. The top three ideas will be awarded cash prizes by Bloomberg Law, and the winning partners will donate to a nonprofit that advances women in the legal profession.

This is not only important for societal reasons, but relevant for companies to ensure they are attracting more than just a fraction of desired talent.

Source: http://www.americanlawyer.com/id=1202740896546/Women-in-Big-Law-Are-Losing-Ground?cmp=share_twitter&slreturn=20150930112144

On the legal industry embracing social media

As unnatural (and sometimes risky) as it is for lawyers to embrace social media, the New York State Bar Association came out and called it an “indispensable” tool for legal professionals. While the profession is based on leather-bound books and a reverence for the past, the industry is changing rapidly to keep up with the times. Here are a few ways Bloomberg has noted that the legal profession has already embraced the social media revolution:

  1. Law firms are going virtual to keep up with the trend of reducing waste and increasing inefficiency while maintaining quality: a more fast-paced, culturally modern, tech-centric model where lawyers have more flexible schedules and firms have reduced some of their overhead expenses.
  2. Virtual lawyers: lawyers work more remotely, and have access to a larger client base. One of the noted downsides to this, however, is that there is a lack of direct access to coworkers where the Internet is an inappropriate arena to discuss some matters.
  3. Law firm marketing now almost all includes social media strategy.

There may be some aspects of social media where the legal profession is indeed behind the curve, but the industry really has clearly taken big strides. The truth of the matter is that there are some aspects of practice that cannot be easily replaced with technology, but where it can lean out, it should.

Source: https://bol.bna.com/get-social-why-the-legal-industry-needs-to-embrace-social-networking/

Manufacturing Stimulus and its Spillover Effects on the Service Sector

Recent Colorado legislation stimulating the manufacturing industry will benefit service oriented firms as well as manufacturing firms.

On May 18, 2015 the Colorado Legislature passed HB-1274 to propel Colorado’s manufacturing industry.  The bill creates a manufacturing “Career Pathway,” the goal of which is to prepare students to a full occupational proficiency after completion of the program. “Career Pathways is defined as a series of connected education and training strategies and support services that enable individuals to secure skills and then obtain employment in a specific occupational area.” In addition to the creation of the manufacturing pathway, there are plans to implement this strategy in construction, information technology, and health care industries. Furthermore, this manufacturing tailored bill is not the first of its kind for Colorado.

In fact, in 2013 the legislature approved the Advanced Industries Acceleration Act, which is a grant program designed to facilitate growth and collaboration within multiple industries, including advanced manufacturing. Days later, the governor approved the Advanced Industries Export Acceleration Program which focuses its efforts on buttressing the Colorado export economy. The Export Acceleration Program provides grants to multiple industries, also including advanced manufacturing. These three programs show the legislature’s serious interest in a strong manufacturing sector.

Colorado’s recent efforts to stimulate its manufacturing sector bode well for a strong regional economy as a whole as well as the manufacturing sector itself. This legislation is not working to create just a few jobs, it is focused on creating a manufacturing mecca. Because of the legislature’s interest in creating job educated individuals through collaboration of businesses and learning institutions, along with their export and growth initiatives, Colorado as a global manufacturing hub is entirely possible.  Colorado is already home to a diverse manufacturing industry, including manufacturing of advanced materials such as: electronics and consumer products, clean energy systems, aerospace vehicles (3rd in the country), and medical devices. In all, 5,900 manufacturing firms and more than 132,800 employees work and live in Colorado. Though Colorado only ranks 32d among the states in manufacturing numbers, this metric will likely change with the interest of the legislature. Colorado as a global manufacturing hub is on the horizon.

The manufacturing stimulus is expected to bring growth to the service sector. Because of the manufacturing sector’s usage of local goods and services to do business, manufacturing has a large indirect employment multiplier. Due to the large employment multiplier effect, this commitment to manufacturing stimulus should fall well on service sector ears. Through Nicholas Kaldor’s research, we have learned that growth, even long term, is investment driven. The stimulus, given the presence of the manufacturing employment multiplier, through growth in manufacturing will act as an investment into the service sector and will produce long term growth for the sector.

In time, if this legislative commitment stays strong, Colorado law firms will likely see more manufacturing work. Further, firms working with sectors that provide inputs to manufacturing such as energy and natural resources, construction, accounting, and engineering, will also experience increases in work volume due to the legislative interest.

Sources:

Harald Hageman & Stephen Seiter, Growth Productivity, and Emp’t Consequences of the New Information and Commc’n Tech.s in Germany and the U.S. 101 (2004).

H.B. 1275, 70th Gen. Assemb., 1st Reg. Sess. (Colo. 2015).

H.B. 1193, 69th Gen. Assemb., 1st Reg. Sess. (Colo. 2013).

H.B. 1001, 69th Gen. Assemb., 1st Reg. Sess. (Colo. 2013).

Advanced Manufacturing, Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade, http://www.advancecolorado.com/key-industries/advanced-manufacturing.

EPI: Manufacturing Jobs Pay Well, The Colorado Springs Business Journal (Jan. 27, 2015), http://www.csbj.com/2015/01/27/epi-manufacturing-jobs-pay-well/

Brian Lewandowski, Colorado’s Manufacturing Employment Growth Third-Fastest Nationally in Dec. Jobs Report, Company Week (Feb. 3, 2015, 01:32 pm), http://companyweek.com/articles/colorados-manufacturing-employment-rebounded-at-a-top-10-pace-in-december-j.

Robert E. Scott, The Manufacturing Footprint and the Importance of U.S. Manufacturing Jobs, Economic Policy Institute (Jan. 22, 2015), http://www.epi.org/publication/the-manufacturing-footprint-and-the-importance-of-u-s-manufacturing-jobs/.

Going from Law Firm to In-House

The move from private practice to in-house demands different skills such as the ability to influence and an understanding of business.

Global Legal Post draws from research conducted by the Association of New Zealand, which found that transitioning from a firm to an in-house legal team is not an easy task. 62 percent of respondents said that it took at least a year to get to grips with the change.

The survey also found that “the most important skill necessary for the move is “influencing skills” – with 99 percent of in-house lawyers surveyed agreeing that it was an essential skill for GCs. In descending order of importance this was followed by strategic thinking and the ability yo translate the complex into simple communications”.

A broad business understanding and specific legal knowledge related to the organization’s operations, and the industry in general were rated as necessary to the role for general counsel as well.

Source: http://www.globallegalpost.com/corporate-counsel/in-house-lawyers-need-influencing-skills-52161459/

“The legal profession rethinks its diversity dilemma”

Diversity matters, especially to the major national corporations that have pledged their commitment to advancing diversity within the legal profession.

The law lags far behind other professions in racial diversity (14.4% minority) time and time again. Around the world, many law firms and departments face similar diversity challenges – few ethnic minority students even apply to work for them, while women lawyers are grossly under-represented at partnership level.

Therefore, law firms are changing techniques so as to bring more diversity and inclusion into the legal world.

Diversity training has proved ineffective, so re-thinking its shortcomings is key. Several lawyers who gathered last week at the Institute for Inclusion in the Legal Profession Symposium in New York, even go as far to contest that business should be taken away from firms that fail to diversify. Not just in terms of race– but women, LGBT, transgender, and disabled. No matter what capacity the change in techniques will be, it is clear that despite all of the time and effort put into talking about diversity, the desired level of progress has not been attained.

The bottom line is that diversity is crucial in both business and the attendant legal profession. To compete successfully, both in-house counsel and outside law firms must work together to seek out well-qualified, diverse candidates to fulfill the goal of diversity in the legal profession.

Sources:
American Bar Association
National Law Journal

David vs. Goliath: Why Executive Search Firms Win

The Leadership Digest posted a great article about the values of working with a boutique executive search firm.

There are typically two ways to go when hiring an executive search firm: large or boutique. Speaking from experience on both sides, I strongly believe that most client companies get better results by partnering with the right boutique executive search firm, rather than by hiring the mega-firms. It may sound prestigious to use a big name firm, but choosing a recruiter is all about quality, from start to finish. And in our experience, bigger is not always better.

With boutique firms:

The client company is not forced down or handed off to a junior associate that then handles the recruiting assignment. We do it ourselves from sourcing the candidates, screening, evaluating, presenting and shepherding both the candidate and client through an offer.

The client deals directly with the person who knows the candidate.

Boutiques have the flexibility to structure their fees based on agreed-upon milestones, instead of the calendar (when the search is launched, when candidates are approved, when interviews begin, and when the final candidate accepts). Many do not charge any automatic administration fees and never add a surcharge for travel, lodging, or other fees.

Boutiques typically work on fewer projects, devoting a great amount of time and attention to each one. They are also always done by partners of the firm.

Boutiques have a business model that enables them to form a genuine partnership with their clients, and develop an in-depth knowledge of the company. This provides for a better opportunity to understand the needs of their clients and assessing candidates that will be the “right fit”.

The bottom line is, we are service providers. It is important to critically evaluate the quality of service you, as a business, will receive, by determining the recruiting firm’s commitment to provide what you and your company want and need.

Source: http://blog.epsenfuller.com/david-vs-goliath-why-boutique-executive-search-firms-win/

Elizabeth Dahill: A Person on the Move

CEO Elizabeth Dahill has been featured in this week’s Denver Business Journal People on the Move. This feature is in recognition of the MPD Partners team’s dedication and hard work in the mission to successfully establish their new legal recruiting firm, MPD Partners, LLC, which is parent company and complement to The Dahill Group, a growing oil & gas recruiting firm.

http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/potmsearch/reprint/submission/4522691?ana=e_potm_thx&ana=e_notification_potm