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Anonymous lawyers spill the beans on own firms

Anonymous lawyers spill the beans on own firms

PIPER ALDERMAN scores top points for its pay, but its meeting room biscuits leave a little to be desired. While Arnold Bloch Leibler has the best biscuits, it is rumoured to be stin

PIPER ALDERMAN scores top points for its pay, but its meeting room biscuits leave a little to be desired. While Arnold Bloch Leibler has the best biscuits, it is rumoured to be stingy with equity. So say the results of a UK survey of Australian law firms.

UK website RollOnFriday has released the results of the first couple of hundred responses to its online survey, which has been running for just over two weeks.

Respondents are asked to provide their level of qualification, as well as tell how competitive their firm’s pay is. Questions range from how easy it is to be promoted to how well the firm treats its staff. But respondents are also asked how they rate the quality of meeting room biscuits, the standard of the firm’s toilets, and how attractive the firm’s staff is.

According to the results, Arnold Bloch Leibler has top quality biscuits, but is “notoriously stingy with equity”. RollOnFriday states that this is a problem common to larger Australian firms. “One Minter Ellison associate comments that ‘it’s easier to cure cancer than make partner’.”

At Freehills, lawyers have access to “awesome Friday night drinks”, while Clayton Utz lawyers pride themselves on being “less nerdy” than their competitors.

Hunt & Hunt has the swishest toilets, the results suggest, while “Corrs Chambers Westgarth apparently ‘court evil’ with clients including British American Tobacco”.

Allens Arthur Robinson respondents have stuck the knife in about their own marketing department, claiming the firm is cursed with that department’s “gratuitous use of AAR where it does not belong. For example, the Annual Swimming cAARnival”.

However, one Allens lawyer with three years’ PQE claimed to be making $140k. So, RollOnFriday notes, “the associates can probably put up with it”.

The website recently reported on a Lawyers Weekly survey of the firms that attended the Sydney Law Careers Fair, writing “hats off to Gadens”, which offered candid responses. For example, in response to a question about who from the firm would be attending the fair, Gadens replied: “A representative selection of some of our finest and most earnest young solicitors may attend, subject to their daily billing targets. If the stall is unattended, it’s because we’re all doing something more important.”

But RollOnFriday said it was disappointed by its own survey results concerning Gadens, which suggested the firm’sSydney Law Careers Fair response to Lawyers Weekly — that it looks for a willingness “to work till it hurts” — may be close to the truth.

“We’re told that fee earners’ weekly billings are circulated round the firm, and offices are allocated based on the number of hours each lawyer racks up. Nice,” the website states.

Like this story? Read more:

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

The legal budget breakdown 2017

Anonymous lawyers spill the beans on own firms
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