Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

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michaelscotch99

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Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby michaelscotch99 » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:38 pm

I don't get it. A 3-hour interview can only give so much information about someone. A whole summer will show you what kind of worker/person they really are. I've dealt with my share of bad coworkers/employees and fully expect a hiring class of 20+ to have at LEAST one bad apple. A hiring class of 50-70 will definitely have a couple.

So why does a firm get a black mark or a bad reputation for having a less than 100% offer rate if they're doing what any other company in other industries are doing? Probationary periods are typical elsewhere, why is it not the same for biglaw?

100% offer rate + almost impossible to get fired as a 1st/2nd year = poor management in other industries. Why is biglaw different?

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star fox

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby star fox » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:40 pm

From the Partners' perspective it stinks, for the Associates perspective it's not great, but for the prospective summer associate, it's great, nobody wants to be the person with the "no offer."

And you need to consider that 100 % offer is the "norm" in BigLaw. If everyone was no offering 1/3 of the class, it wouldn't be a huge deal. But when everyone is giving out 100 % and one firm is giving out 75 %, the people in the no offered group from that class are going to look really bad. Any other firms are going to assume this person must have been really awful and done something egregiously bad, and there won't be any spots available because every other firm just hired all their Summers to come back.

lolwat

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby lolwat » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:47 pm

The reputation comes from the SA perspective, that's why. All else equal, no SA comparing two firms would join the one with a 75% offer rate over the one with a 100% offer rate. Why subject yourself to the possibility that you'll be in the 1/4 that don't get an offer?

Npret

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Npret » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:51 pm

Getting no offered can kill your career before it starts. Not many people want to do that to someone just because they are a bad fit.
Also don't forget cold offers

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PeanutsNJam

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby PeanutsNJam » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:53 pm

michaelscotch99 wrote:I don't get it. A 3-hour interview can only give so much information about someone. A whole summer will show you what kind of worker/person they really are. I've dealt with my share of bad coworkers/employees and fully expect a hiring class of 20+ to have at LEAST one bad apple. A hiring class of 50-70 will definitely have a couple.

So why does a firm get a black mark or a bad reputation for having a less than 100% offer rate if they're doing what any other company in other industries are doing? Probationary periods are typical elsewhere, why is it not the same for biglaw?

100% offer rate + almost impossible to get fired as a 1st/2nd year = poor management in other industries. Why is biglaw different?


Well, don't almost all employer offer full time employment after <3 hours of interviews? And wouldn't you agree it's highly unusual for employers to fire an employee after 3 months of employment? If you consider the SA as the first three months of a full time job, it makes sense.

Blackfish

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Blackfish » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:56 pm

Only shitty firms and/or financially unstable firms no offer summer associates. Firms don't want that kind of image.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby star fox » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:57 pm

PeanutsNJam wrote:
michaelscotch99 wrote:I don't get it. A 3-hour interview can only give so much information about someone. A whole summer will show you what kind of worker/person they really are. I've dealt with my share of bad coworkers/employees and fully expect a hiring class of 20+ to have at LEAST one bad apple. A hiring class of 50-70 will definitely have a couple.

So why does a firm get a black mark or a bad reputation for having a less than 100% offer rate if they're doing what any other company in other industries are doing? Probationary periods are typical elsewhere, why is it not the same for biglaw?

100% offer rate + almost impossible to get fired as a 1st/2nd year = poor management in other industries. Why is biglaw different?


Well, don't almost all employer offer full time employment after <3 hours of interviews? And wouldn't you agree it's highly unusual for employers to fire an employee after 3 months of employment? If you consider the SA as the first three months of a full time job, it makes sense.

It's not, but it's the norm that it basically is so it is what it is, anyone deciding between a firm that offers 100 % and one that doesn't is taking a gamble. Students are rationally going to prefer firms with 100 %.

ur_hero

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby ur_hero » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:58 pm

I'd say the number one factor is making the firm attractive to top candidates who are smart people that want to account for the risk of having or not having a job.

I think it also speaks to the quality of the firm's selection and hiring process of Summer Associates. A lower offer rate may be interpreted as the firm essentially sucking at vetting and selecting SAs (either by bringing in students that just aren't suited for the job, or intentionally bringing in more than their hiring needs), while conversely, a high offer rate may mean the firm selects strong candidates that they knew after the interviewing process would develop into great associates (absent major blunders).
Last edited by ur_hero on Thu Apr 13, 2017 3:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Apr 13, 2017 2:58 pm

star fox wrote:From the Partners' perspective it stinks, for the Associates perspective it's not great, but for the prospective summer associate, it's great, nobody wants to be the person with the "no offer."

And you need to consider that 100 % offer is the "norm" in BigLaw. If everyone was no offering 1/3 of the class, it wouldn't be a huge deal. But when everyone is giving out 100 % and one firm is giving out 75 %, the people in the no offered group from that class are going to look really bad. Any other firms are going to assume this person must have been really awful and done something egregiously bad, and there won't be any spots available because every other firm just hired all their Summers to come back.

I really wish I would have heeded this advice when selecting a firm out of OCI. I chose wrong and went to a firm and ended up getting no-offered. I was lucky enough to land a District Court clerkship but who knows how firms will view me on the other side.

Moral of the story: 100% rates are desirable to candidates. Like this poster said, unless all firms are doing it, the wise candidate will choose the sure thing. Firms know they can't attract top talent unless that talent feels secure in their decision. I made the mistake and I would recommend those making the choice between offers consider the offer rate as a key factor in their decision.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby zot1 » Thu Apr 13, 2017 3:01 pm

Why wouldn't 100% offer rate be ideal?

Abbie Doobie

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Abbie Doobie » Thu Apr 13, 2017 4:14 pm

100% is literally the definition of the word ideal

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby HonestAdvice » Thu Apr 13, 2017 4:19 pm

The places giving summer offers are hiring from the same schools every year, and have a pretty good idea of the personality types they are looking for. The bar for fit is not very high. If you aren't an asshole or complete weirdo, you're not going to get no offered for fit. Someone might get picked over you based on fit, but the threshold to not disqualify yourself based on fit is very low. Further, the work product is pretty predictable because the summer work is easy and if you work hard, your word product will be fine.

Every once in a while you have someone like the I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell guy, but there's a reason his autobiography was a best seller and it's not because he was the first upper middle class white guy to graduate from Duke Law School. Most personality disorders are apparent in 5-10 minutes, and people don't go from Ruth Ginsburg to Girls Gone Wild at the drop of a hat. Unless the entire summer class sucks or the summer is a complete piece of shit, someone's forcing them in a cab before they do anything crazy. In terms of work product, the bar for success is not very high. The importance of the work you're doing will be hyped up to make you feel special, but it's mostly just an idiot test.

The incentive structure is also off - the associates creating summer work are doing so to immerse themselves in the firm to make themselves more valuable so they're biased towards giving you good reviews. On the partner level, summers naturally attract those who want to teach and develop young lawyers. The cynical pricks are less likely to get involved so from the get go everyone is biased in your favor.

What this means is that no offers are generally financial, and someone no offered at one firm would't have been at another. PPP are misleading, because the whole point of a law firm is to maximize PPP. No matter how bad business is, that figure won't be a negative for very long. If a firm no offers 2 out of 25, it's possible those 2 were ridiculous. Let's say 5 were no offered. It's a long shot all 5 were freak shows, but I once won a $100 from a scratcher. Shit happens. If there's 20% no offers year in year out, and the size of the class is changing - say 50 summers 2015, 30 in 2016, 10 in 2017, a 2L should proceed cautiously.

When people talk about no offers, they focus on the extreme cases because (1) they're memorable and (2) if you no offer 2 people - one who deserved it and one who didn't, you will focus on the first because you don't want to feel like shit. Within 3/4 years, you won't even remember you no offered the second one.

The danger is this situation where you're iffy on a candidate - let's say 60/40. They want you so it's not a cold offer, but you're the least wanted of the bunch. There's no reason for them to tell you this so they won't, and you'll just get a solid review.

All's good, sure, but then the firm hits a rough patch right before you start so by the time you start you're getting the worst work. Ideally you want to be on something as early as possible so you see it from beginning to end (best way to learn), and you develop relationships before shit hits the fan. There is also the work where they need another body, and you're thrown on something from 5 PM till 5 AM after shit has already hit the fun. You can do the work but have no exposure to the big picture, and are thus really just an overpaid doc reviewer.

This is obvious, but you also want to be on matters with people in your home office. If you work with a satellite office, you might get repeat work but the work isn't that hard and eventually there's going to be somebody competent in their office who they see every day. If you're not at a firm that always has a lot of work, the work you're getting when you start is very important and it's not random but it's just out of your purview and control.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby 2014 » Thu Apr 13, 2017 4:54 pm

You can't "fix" the 100% offer rate thing in a vacuum. It's one factor and a natural bi-product of what by all accounts is a terrible hiring model industry-wide but near impossible to change because of inertia and any multitude of competitive (or anti-competitive depending on your level of cynicism) forces.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby LurkerTurnedMember » Thu Apr 13, 2017 5:06 pm

when picking firms, a lot of law students mostly look at geography, pay, practice area, and employment chances, and rightly so. But to a large extent, every big law firm is the same. They pay the same, they have the same practice areas (vary in size of course), they're all in major markets by now so cover the same geographical preferences. The biggest thing that matters then is the employment chances. So if you tell me 10% of people didn't get a job at firm X but a 100% got it at Y, I'll pick Y in a heart beat, even if X has a larger preferred practice area. Even if X is skadden and Y is a V75 or something, I'm going with Y. I'll get the same everything without risking being unemployed. And that's how it should be. When we have 100k+ in loans, you bet your ass I'm not gonna have patience or time for anything less than 100%, for a firm to have me use up my one shot at big law out of law school just to tell me I'm getting kicked cause I didn't smile enough or listen to a partner's boring story with enough interest, or something dumb like that.

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Monochromatic Oeuvre

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Monochromatic Oeuvre » Thu Apr 13, 2017 5:34 pm

Because why would a SA subject themselves to more risk than necessary?

The premise of this question is weird. People don't shit on firms who give 95% offers. Chronic offenders are the only ones getting called out, for the reasons you identified.

Tiny Rick!

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Tiny Rick! » Thu Apr 13, 2017 5:48 pm

This question reeks of special snowflake syndrome.

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zhenders

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby zhenders » Thu Apr 13, 2017 5:51 pm

Tiny Rick! wrote:This question reeks of special snowflake syndrome.


Yep. Don't worry, OP -- the weeds you're worried aren't getting pulled will work themselves out. You just keep on shining brilliantly, and I'm sure you'll stand out just fine.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby anon3030 » Thu Apr 13, 2017 6:02 pm

PeanutsNJam wrote:
michaelscotch99 wrote:
Well, don't almost all employer offer full time employment after <3 hours of interviews? And wouldn't you agree it's highly unusual for employers to fire an employee after 3 months of employment? If you consider the SA as the first three months of a full time job, it makes sense.


This does make sense. Best answer.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby ur_hero » Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:27 pm

Abbie Doobie wrote:100% is literally the definition of the word ideal


Yeah, honestly this sums it up.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Npret » Thu Apr 13, 2017 8:58 pm

anon3030 wrote:
PeanutsNJam wrote:
michaelscotch99 wrote:
Well, don't almost all employer offer full time employment after <3 hours of interviews? And wouldn't you agree it's highly unusual for employers to fire an employee after 3 months of employment? If you consider the SA as the first three months of a full time job, it makes sense.


This does make sense. Best answer.

But it doesn't make sense because an SA isn't at all like your real job as an associate and is more of an extended interview.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby PeanutsNJam » Thu Apr 13, 2017 9:46 pm

Npret wrote:
anon3030 wrote:
PeanutsNJam wrote:
michaelscotch99 wrote:
Well, don't almost all employer offer full time employment after <3 hours of interviews? And wouldn't you agree it's highly unusual for employers to fire an employee after 3 months of employment? If you consider the SA as the first three months of a full time job, it makes sense.


This does make sense. Best answer.

But it doesn't make sense because an SA isn't at all like your real job as an associate and is more of an extended interview.


It's not a perfect analogy because no client pays for your work and you're not even a barred lawyer, but the point is it's not abnormal for a company to be prepared to extend a full time offer after 3 hours of interviews and give you like a year or so of leeway for you to learn the job.

Npret

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby Npret » Thu Apr 13, 2017 9:59 pm

PeanutsNJam wrote:
Npret wrote:
anon3030 wrote:
PeanutsNJam wrote:
michaelscotch99 wrote:
Well, don't almost all employer offer full time employment after <3 hours of interviews? And wouldn't you agree it's highly unusual for employers to fire an employee after 3 months of employment? If you consider the SA as the first three months of a full time job, it makes sense.


This does make sense. Best answer.

But it doesn't make sense because an SA isn't at all like your real job as an associate and is more of an extended interview.


It's not a perfect analogy because no client pays for your work and you're not even a barred lawyer, but the point is it's not abnormal for a company to be prepared to extend a full time offer after 3 hours of interviews and give you like a year or so of leeway for you to learn the job.


The 100% offer rate is there to protect the firm's reputation. They will cold offer people and they will stealth junior associates so they maintain their reputation as 100% firms. It has nothing to do with being the first 3 months of your job.

I don't think the same pressure applies to other employers so I don't understand the comparison.

I'm not sure why OP thinks everyone getting a job is a problem. I'm guessing OP doesn't quite grasp the pyramid structure of biglaw and the number of people who leave after the first two years.

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Re: Why is 100% offer rate "ideal"?

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:29 am

I wish that we didn't have to give offers to everyone, because some of them kinda suck, so yeah it's not ideal. It's also not ideal to pay people 180k when they aren't even admitted to practice, but when your competitors do it you have to, too.



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