It's not too late - BEST advice for the job search

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lsatlsat
Posts: 17
Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2008 12:36 am

It's not too late - BEST advice for the job search

Postby lsatlsat » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:13 am

Unless you're top 10%, or come from a top school, then it's not a numbers game. You can fill out hundreds of those online app forms and emaill all the recruiting departments, but if you don't actually make them believe that you want to work there, then you won't get an interview. You'll feel great after having hundreds of those application "seeds" out there germinating, but nothing's gonna sprout!

With your limited time remaining for that elusive big firm search, THIS is what you should be doing - not mass mailing. These methods have been the best for me, in order of success rate (I'm barely top 1/3, top 25 school, 2nd journal). They are obvious, but their importance should be stressed:

1) Think of any friend, family member, or friend's friend, or friend's family member that is a lawyer. Rack your brain. Ask around. Once you track down this person, get in touch and tell him/her that you're interested, and include your resume.

2) Apply to a firm you want through their preferred method. Then e-mail the chair of some practice area that you're interested in at the firm. Tell them you already applied, but you wanted to also bring your application to their attention. Only do this if it's a genuine interest that you can demonstrate through past experience. Otherwise you might piss them off.

3) Apply to firms outside of major markets. Think of any connection you can to some place like Mississippi or Minnesota, and hit this hard in your cover letter. Actually this can and should be combined with 1) or 2) above.

4) If you have any time after COMPLETELY exhausting the above methods, then you can resort to mass-mailing. Some people on TLS have had some success, although I haven't.

FYI I have 15 interviews so far - 5 through OCI, 10 through my above methods, and ZERO through cold mass-mailing (although I did waste a lot of time and applied to about 50 firms this way.) GOOD LUCK! Also save some time to pick out a new tie for interviews.

LS18
Posts: 53
Joined: Wed Aug 26, 2009 10:20 pm

Re: It's not too late - BEST advice for the job search

Postby LS18 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 5:25 am

Really good advice. Encouraging to see the # of interviews you received.

Two quick, semi-related questions for you if you don't mind.

1) Other than state connections for out-of-state firms, how much did you personalize your CL's?

2) My school has a resume collect for some firms. Do you think it makes any difference submitting an app through the resume collect vs. the employer's website?

Thanks!

lsatlsat
Posts: 17
Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2008 12:36 am

Re: It's not too late - BEST advice for the job search

Postby lsatlsat » Tue Aug 09, 2011 5:40 am

LS18 wrote:Really good advice. Encouraging to see the # of interviews you received.

Two quick, semi-related questions for you if you don't mind.

1) Other than state connections for out-of-state firms, how much did you personalize your CL's?

2) My school has a resume collect for some firms. Do you think it makes any difference submitting an app through the resume collect vs. the employer's website?

Thanks!


1) I'm interested in a pretty specific practice area. I looked at each firm's website and tried to find any unique language about this practice area. I put this language into the topic sentence of each paragraph about my background, gave a run down of my background, and then linked the two together in the final sentence. Just imagine you will be reading the letter. Does it sound like this person put any thought or research into your firm? The less generic the better.

2) I'm guessing resume collect will get looked at first, although I think they're pretty comparable. But in my experience, if you have any contacts at the firm, reach out to them even if the firm is doing OCI, res collect, or whatever.

Aston2412
Posts: 466
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 11:23 am

Re: It's not too late - BEST advice for the job search

Postby Aston2412 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:10 am

lsatlsat wrote: Only do this if it's a genuine interest that you can demonstrate through past experience. Otherwise you might piss them off.



What do you mean here?

Also, I assume we're talking BigLaw?

lsatlsat
Posts: 17
Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2008 12:36 am

Re: It's not too late - BEST advice for the job search

Postby lsatlsat » Wed Aug 10, 2011 11:54 pm

Aston2412 wrote:
lsatlsat wrote: Only do this if it's a genuine interest that you can demonstrate through past experience. Otherwise you might piss them off.



What do you mean here?

Also, I assume we're talking BigLaw?


For example, if you have an IP or tax background, or you're interested in int'l law and you lived in Singapore and they have an office there. I think they'll be a lot less skeptical if you have something meaty like that to show that you're really interested.




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