Predictability in The In-House Counsel Hiring Cycle? If so, what is it?

Last updated on October 6, 2020

The Lawyer Whisper has a solid blog post on trying to time the in-house job market. While this post was written in 2019, it offers an interesting analysis that may still be relevant in the COVID and post-COVID times.

15+ years ago the hiring market for in house lawyers was fairly predictable and cyclical in nature. Most of the hiring activity occurred in the first quarter (Q1) of the calendar year when legal budgets were created and authorized. Hiring might trickle in to Q2 but by August, the first lull was in full force. September and October usually saw moderate activity with replacement hires, but by the time the holidays rolled around the crickets were chirping. Employers and candidates hunkered down until the New Year when the hiring cycle started again.

Today, it’s a different ballgame. And the hiring activity remains generally constant throughout the year. Budgets are still set in Q1 and the beginning of the quarter still kicks off the hiring season. But hiring continues throughout the year. There is a modest slow down in August, but as a whole there’s far more activity than in years past. The following months are more active with new opportunities arising and interviews pushing through the holidays.

So what accounts for the change? 

Go here to read the full blog post.