DPW callback

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Anonymous User
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DPW callback

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Aug 14, 2011 7:03 pm

any tips / info from people who have done one with DPW. They wont tell you your interviewers until day of, how do you deal with that.

Anonymous User
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Re: DPW callback

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Aug 14, 2011 7:32 pm

There isn't much to gain out of knowing your interviewers in advance. Creeping on interviewer background won't get you an offer, and a lot of firms won't give you a heads up in advance. At ALL firms your schedule is subject to availability day off, and thus even if you get a list rescheduling / random interviewers is so common as to be the rule and not the exception.

So don't worry at all about that.

If you have a morning interview, you'll start by going to the 27th floor and hanging out with other people there for callback day. Usually you'll get a tour from somebody in recruiting (i.e. they'll show you the new cafeteria and barely used library) and then have ~4 standard interviews with attorneys. Afterward two more will take you to lunch somewhere near the office.

The entire thing is fairly conversational, you won't be grilled on legal substance here. DPW places an enormous emphasis on fit at the callback stage, but you can't really fake it. The firm is looking for brilliant, motivated, friendly people, but not "win at all costs" or "take no prisoners" type attitudes. A lot of its peer firms have a 'swagger' or 'ego' that DPW definitely lacks.

It's definitely not a 'fratty' firm the way you may hear others described. People are sociable but not necessarily out drinking with one another every night, and there's a certain buttoned up / reserved / classy / refined culture to the firm. It's often described as "the Tiffanys of law firms" and there's something to that description.

You'll get an offer or a ding when the hiring committee meets, which could be anytime from 1 day to 2 weeks afterward. It's very random and depends on how busy the people you meet with + the committee itself are. Historically Davis Polk is amongst the most selective large law firms at the callback stage, post-callback offer rates of 20-30% aren't unheard of.

The firm itself is about 60-70% corporate transactions and 30-40% litigation, with a medium sized tax department and a miniscule trusts & estates practice. DC doesn't take summers, and the other offices are basically all corporate work. DPW's 3 major corporate specialties are capital markets (debt and equity, representing companies or underwriters), credit (loans and finance, chiefly representing banks and financial institutions), and mergers & acquisitions. DPW also has a major financial institutions group that is hugely relevant after Dodd-Frank, an enormous number of man hours just went into putting together reports and a regulatory tracker in the wake of the 1 year anniversary of that legislation. Other practices (bankruptcy, benefits, derivatives, hedge funds / private equity fund management, IP, environmental, real estate) are strong but not as large man-power wise. There's no need to 'know' exactly what you want at this stage, however.

Because DPW is so well known for corporate, some write-ups write off its litigation practice. The firm still has major litigation clients and matters, and is band-1 ranked by chambers, so don't overlook that. In recent years the firm has emphasized hiring from corporate, so a corporate preference is likely to get you further, though the firm is very accommodating of your preferences once hired for the summer and will give you work from any practice area you're interested in.

Doing a news search or looking at the website should turn up some of the major clients in litigation and corporate work of late. They have done a lot of IPOs lately, though not as many of the tech IPOs.

Anonymous User
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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: DPW callback

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Aug 14, 2011 8:39 pm

Anonymous User wrote:There isn't much to gain out of knowing your interviewers in advance. Creeping on interviewer background won't get you an offer, and a lot of firms won't give you a heads up in advance. At ALL firms your schedule is subject to availability day off, and thus even if you get a list rescheduling / random interviewers is so common as to be the rule and not the exception.

So don't worry at all about that.

If you have a morning interview, you'll start by going to the 27th floor and hanging out with other people there for callback day. Usually you'll get a tour from somebody in recruiting (i.e. they'll show you the new cafeteria and barely used library) and then have ~4 standard interviews with attorneys. Afterward two more will take you to lunch somewhere near the office.

The entire thing is fairly conversational, you won't be grilled on legal substance here. DPW places an enormous emphasis on fit at the callback stage, but you can't really fake it. The firm is looking for brilliant, motivated, friendly people, but not "win at all costs" or "take no prisoners" type attitudes. A lot of its peer firms have a 'swagger' or 'ego' that DPW definitely lacks.

It's definitely not a 'fratty' firm the way you may hear others described. People are sociable but not necessarily out drinking with one another every night, and there's a certain buttoned up / reserved / classy / refined culture to the firm. It's often described as "the Tiffanys of law firms" and there's something to that description.

You'll get an offer or a ding when the hiring committee meets, which could be anytime from 1 day to 2 weeks afterward. It's very random and depends on how busy the people you meet with + the committee itself are. Historically Davis Polk is amongst the most selective large law firms at the callback stage, post-callback offer rates of 20-30% aren't unheard of.

The firm itself is about 60-70% corporate transactions and 30-40% litigation, with a medium sized tax department and a miniscule trusts & estates practice. DC doesn't take summers, and the other offices are basically all corporate work. DPW's 3 major corporate specialties are capital markets (debt and equity, representing companies or underwriters), credit (loans and finance, chiefly representing banks and financial institutions), and mergers & acquisitions. DPW also has a major financial institutions group that is hugely relevant after Dodd-Frank, an enormous number of man hours just went into putting together reports and a regulatory tracker in the wake of the 1 year anniversary of that legislation. Other practices (bankruptcy, benefits, derivatives, hedge funds / private equity fund management, IP, environmental, real estate) are strong but not as large man-power wise. There's no need to 'know' exactly what you want at this stage, however.

Because DPW is so well known for corporate, some write-ups write off its litigation practice. The firm still has major litigation clients and matters, and is band-1 ranked by chambers, so don't overlook that. In recent years the firm has emphasized hiring from corporate, so a corporate preference is likely to get you further, though the firm is very accommodating of your preferences once hired for the summer and will give you work from any practice area you're interested in.

Doing a news search or looking at the website should turn up some of the major clients in litigation and corporate work of late. They have done a lot of IPOs lately, though not as many of the tech IPOs.


wow, thanks!

Anonymous User
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Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: DPW callback

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Aug 14, 2011 8:46 pm

At Columbia, DPW is very selective at the callback stage because the firm gives callbacks to way more people than any other firm. Last year, DPW screened approximately 220 candidates and extended callbacks to approximately half (e.g. 111). As a result, a smaller than average number of people who got callbacks received actual offers after callbacks.

I've heard that DPW's litigation department is very slow right now...

Anonymous User
Posts: 273572
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: DPW callback

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 15, 2011 8:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:At Columbia, DPW is very selective at the callback stage because the firm gives callbacks to way more people than any other firm. Last year, DPW screened approximately 220 candidates and extended callbacks to approximately half (e.g. 111). As a result, a smaller than average number of people who got callbacks received actual offers after callbacks.

I've heard that DPW's litigation department is very slow right now...


I'm at a T2. They usually hire 1 or 2 SAs from my school a year. They only screened about 20 kids. I'm not sure how many they called back though.




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