How to Research Firms
★ Essential information
● Financial Health/Trajectory
● Market Reputation/Practice Strengths
● News & Events
● Practice Area Research
● Find Practicing Attorneys
Use Symplicity to upload your resume and enter employer bids for OCS recruitment programs. You can also use it to review firm profiles and to find specific information regarding particular employers’ interview preferences. Access Symplicity through the OCS website or the link above.
The NALP Directory is a user-friendly, searchable website containing brief firm profiles, demographics, and primary practice areas for large law firms. The NALP Directory also provides anticipated hiring numbers for the upcoming summer and year, compensation for summer and new associates, billable hour requirements, and data on partnership patterns.
Firm Websites ★●●●●
Each firm’s website contains valuable information regarding its office, attorneys, practice areas, summer program, etc. At a minimum, before you interview with a firm, you should review its website. While they’re primarily designed to attract business and recruit talented attorneys, firm websites do provide a window into how the firm views itself and how it positions itself in the industry. Pay attention to the number of attorneys in a given practice area or office, browse the “news” or “client alerts” sections to get a better sense of the firm’s priorities. Use the attorney bios to research your interviewers, to find Howard Law alumni, and to get a sense of the firm’s client base and major engagements.
This website provides various guides to the legal profession in the US, the UK, and globally. Chambers USA Guide ranks and describes top firms and attorneys by practice area in narrative form for every state in the US. In addition, the website has Chambers Global Guide, Chambers UK Guide, and Chambers Student Guide (which is the UK Guide with an insider’s view of the leading law firms).
Chambers Associate ●●●↑
Here you’ll find surveyed-based information presented in narrative form about a selection of large firms around the country. Search by practice area, geographic location, or firm name. The surveys cover associate life (quality/volume of work; hours; culture), areas of firm expertise, and information including benefits packages and national hiring practices.
This wide-ranging tool provides information about law firms and legal markets around the globe. From Albania to Zambia, their coverage is in-depth and presented in narrative form and rankings. Legal500 contains practice area reviews that report on major recent developments in a given field. It also presents qualitative assessments of law firms’ strengths and the names of leading lawyers in various practice areas.
With a focus on litigation practices in the United States, Asia, and Canada, Benchmark litigation provides tiered rankings and qualitative firm information derived from interviews with litigators and their clients.
The link to this website is available on the OCS website – registration is free if you use the link below and register using your Howard email address. Vault profiles and ranks large national law firms with a heavy emphasis on the “prestige” of the firm. The Vault Guide to the Top 100 Law Firms, which is available online, contains some qualitative information about firms. Vault publishes other guides that may be useful, such as regional guides and guides to different practice areas.
The Bloomberg BNA guides, available through the Howard Law Library and your Bloomberg student account, contain in-depth research regarding cutting-edge issues in specific areas of the law. Read these to stay up-to-date on practice areas of interest. library.law.howard.edu/databases
Available through your student Westlaw account, Westlaw has a guide to The One-Hundred Largest U.S. Law Firms and links to several professional organizations can be accessed through the Careers page.
Use the Advanced Search feature on both websites to find Howard Law alumni working in certain firms, cities, or practice areas.