Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

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Anonymous User
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Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Apr 09, 2015 11:18 pm

I'm about 1.5 years into practice in biglaw, and got shut out of practice area I've always wanted. So I'm stuck in an area I have no interest in and do not like at all. Firm won't let me switch. Looking into positions at other firms to break into this area. Just saw an opening for a flex time position in this area, for which I meet the qualifications. I'm somewhat desperate to finally break into this area (considering leaving legal practice if I can't get in, since I have other options tangential to practice), so maybe a flextime position is worth it to at least get my foot in the door? My questions are (1) does anyone have any experience with flextime positions and how much less the pay/hours are compared to regular associates? and (2) is that kind of position a dead end, or a genuine way to get experience in that practice area?

KidStuddi
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby KidStuddi » Fri Apr 10, 2015 1:56 am

Your questions are best handled by applying for the job and interviewing with the firm. "Flex time" is differently defined at firms and no one will be able to give you meaningful feedback without you naming the firm specifically. If you still have questions after you have an offer in hand, just take them directly to the recruiting people and maybe do a smell test of their answers here. Asking random people to speculate on what the position means at an unknown firm is largely worthless though.

Anonymous User
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 2:02 am

KidStuddi wrote:Your questions are best handled by applying for the job and interviewing with the firm. "Flex time" is differently defined at firms and no one will be able to give you meaningful feedback without you naming the firm specifically. If you still have questions after you have an offer in hand, just take them directly to the recruiting people and maybe do a smell test of their answers here. Asking random people to speculate on what the position means at an unknown firm is largely worthless though.


True. Guess the amount of "flex" is really discretionary and depends on circumstances. I was just curious whether this would even be a good way of getting in the door in my desired practice area. Its looking like I may not get any shot in this area, so obviously I'm pretty desperate.

Anonymous User
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 7:01 am

Anonymous User wrote:I'm about 1.5 years into practice in biglaw, and got shut out of practice area I've always wanted. So I'm stuck in an area I have no interest in and do not like at all. Firm won't let me switch. Looking into positions at other firms to break into this area. Just saw an opening for a flex time position in this area, for which I meet the qualifications. I'm somewhat desperate to finally break into this area (considering leaving legal practice if I can't get in, since I have other options tangential to practice), so maybe a flextime position is worth it to at least get my foot in the door? My questions are (1) does anyone have any experience with flextime positions and how much less the pay/hours are compared to regular associates? and (2) is that kind of position a dead end, or a genuine way to get experience in that practice area?


I'd like to note that I had the exact same experience and just lateralled to another firm in a different practice area. I had to drop back to a first year salary, but who cares when you don't like what you do?

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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 9:11 am

I will maybe try that angle. I would have no problem at all dropping salary, since I'm getting pretty desperate. I can't take it much more doing something I dislike this much at this stressful a firm. So I'm expending all opportunities to break into this area, whether it be a at a lower class level, a flextime position, etc. Its sort of a last hurrah (odd given that I'm only 2 years in), but if I can't do something I enjoy, I'm not going to continue out of inertia. Life is too short. Fingers crossed, but I feel like my lack of experience in this area is obviously being held against me, which isn't a surprise.

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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 11:55 am

Why not? I mean get some experience and lateral again in a year or two or enjoy your life making 75% of your current salary and having time to enjoy your life. honestly sounds like a dream position to me. doing the work you want, still making bank, getting experience to go in house or wherever. What are your concerns? That you won't make partner as a flew time assoc.? As long as you're working 3/4 time or more it shouldn't be an issue for resume purposes.

Point of reference; at my firm, no weekends = 80% of pay; no nights and no weekends = 60% of pay (which it turns out is less than govt. in my PG). Other flextime arrangements such as having a few hours guaranteed off during the evening to put the kids to bed, varies.

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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:43 pm

OP here. The concern is that its not a typical flex time arrangement. Its for a position specifically as a research attorney, so its more of a backup role as opposed to being a regular old associate who just happens to work less hours. I figured that even a backup role like that would at least be in the area I'd like, and would perhaps give me a springboard to lateral at some point. Again, its a bit of a last hurrah.

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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. The concern is that its not a typical flex time arrangement. Its for a position specifically as a research attorney, so its more of a backup role as opposed to being a regular old associate who just happens to work less hours. I figured that even a backup role like that would at least be in the area I'd like, and would perhaps give me a springboard to lateral at some point. Again, its a bit of a last hurrah.


A research attorney? Then no, I wouldn't do it at all. Interview and see if you can talk them into making you an associate at lower pay or something. Flex time research attorney sounds like an hourly contract attorney.

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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 2:41 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here. The concern is that its not a typical flex time arrangement. Its for a position specifically as a research attorney, so its more of a backup role as opposed to being a regular old associate who just happens to work less hours. I figured that even a backup role like that would at least be in the area I'd like, and would perhaps give me a springboard to lateral at some point. Again, its a bit of a last hurrah.


A research attorney? Then no, I wouldn't do it at all. Interview and see if you can talk them into making you an associate at lower pay or something. Flex time research attorney sounds like an hourly contract attorney.


They said its not hourly and its not on a contract basis, and is permanent employment. But yeah, I really want a full time regular associate position. I have viable alternatives to actual practice that I could transition into that would be good for me, but I'd like to expend every opportunity to break into that group. That being said, a research attorney position may still not be worth it since I doubt it will actually get me in the door.

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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Apr 10, 2015 6:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OP here. The concern is that its not a typical flex time arrangement. Its for a position specifically as a research attorney, so its more of a backup role as opposed to being a regular old associate who just happens to work less hours. I figured that even a backup role like that would at least be in the area I'd like, and would perhaps give me a springboard to lateral at some point. Again, its a bit of a last hurrah.


A research attorney? Then no, I wouldn't do it at all. Interview and see if you can talk them into making you an associate at lower pay or something. Flex time research attorney sounds like an hourly contract attorney.


They said its not hourly and its not on a contract basis, and is permanent employment. But yeah, I really want a full time regular associate position. I have viable alternatives to actual practice that I could transition into that would be good for me, but I'd like to expend every opportunity to break into that group. That being said, a research attorney position may still not be worth it since I doubt it will actually get me in the door.



Doesnt matter what they say, it matters what the position looks like on your resume. It's less than associate which probably makes being an associate at another firm more difficult. But if you wont like being an associate, maybe that doesnt matter!!

Anonymous User
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Apr 11, 2015 11:28 am

^^^

Its not that I wouldn't like or want to be an associate. I absolutely want to be an associate in my target practice area. But I've decided that, if I can't break into that area relatively soon, I'm going to leave biglaw and do something tangentially related to law that I would really enjoy (I have a few options in mind that I won't go into at the moment). So I'm just looking to turn over any last rock for breaking into my target group in the next few months.

Persia
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Persia » Sun Apr 12, 2015 10:30 pm

Are you looking at L&E? I know Littler has junior-level research positions like this that are flex time and work-from-home. I think it sounds awesome from a work-life standpoint, assuming the pay is decent. But I'm skeptical that it would be easier to break into the field as a part-time research attorney in the right practice area than it would be to switch from whatever group you're in now as a full-time associate.

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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Apr 12, 2015 10:37 pm

Persia wrote:Are you looking at L&E? I know Littler has junior-level research positions like this that are flex time and work-from-home. I think it sounds awesome from a work-life standpoint, assuming the pay is decent. But I'm skeptical that it would be easier to break into the field as a part-time research attorney in the right practice area than it would be to switch from whatever group you're in now as a full-time associate.


You hit the nail on the head. Its L&E I'm shooting for. And I am also skeptical that this would be a way to get my foot in the door in the world of L&E. I'm gunning hard for a full time associate gig in this area. Shame since most big firms have marginalized this area, and put little focus on it. You have your L&E speciality large firms (ex. Littler, Jackson Lewis, Ogletree, etc.), and certain Vault firms that are strong in the area (ex. Morgan Lewis, Proskauer, Paul Hastings, etc.) but not much else. So theres few openings, and they almost always go to someone with prior L&E experience.

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nealric
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby nealric » Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm about 1.5 years into practice in biglaw, and got shut out of practice area I've always wanted. So I'm stuck in an area I have no interest in and do not like at all. Firm won't let me switch. Looking into positions at other firms to break into this area. Just saw an opening for a flex time position in this area, for which I meet the qualifications. I'm somewhat desperate to finally break into this area (considering leaving legal practice if I can't get in, since I have other options tangential to practice), so maybe a flextime position is worth it to at least get my foot in the door? My questions are (1) does anyone have any experience with flextime positions and how much less the pay/hours are compared to regular associates? and (2) is that kind of position a dead end, or a genuine way to get experience in that practice area?


Sounds like career suicide to me...

If you go from a "associate" to a title less than that ("contract attorney" "research associate", etc), your resume is going to scream "couldn't hack it" (even if that characterization isn't fair). It's important to create the impression with each move that you are advancing.

I know biglaw is not fun right now, but take it from someone who has been there: don't lateral until your find the right job for you. I am so glad I didn't end up at any of the places I looked at early on in my lateral job search. It took me most of a year to finally land at the right place, but it was the perfect position for me.

Anonymous User
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Apr 13, 2015 12:59 pm

^^^

I hear you. Though I doubt I will be practicing much longer if I don't land in my practice group of choice within the next few months. Already been searching for about 4 months and nothing yet. And in my case, the longer I go, the more the substance gap grows, which makes the flip harder and harder. Its a shame, but not a huge worry for me, since I have career alternatives I think I would ultimately enjoy much more.

gaddockteeg
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby gaddockteeg » Tue Apr 14, 2015 11:53 am

Considered clerking? I know someone who switched practice groups by clerking. Just a thought? Doesn't have to be A3 either. Person I know went from mid law practice group A to maryland court of appeals (highest court in maryland) to Kirkland Ellis practice group B.

Anonymous User
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Re: Flex Time Positions in BigLaw

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Apr 14, 2015 12:00 pm

I don't have the grades to clerk, unfortunately.




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