What are the reasons the candidate is considering leaving his or her law firm?
What type of book of business does the candidate bring and do conflicts exist?
Research the financial health of the clients the candidate intends to bring.
Consider the candidate's business plan to determine billings and collections from the past five years (e.g., originating, managing, billing and working).
Retrieve a copy of the current firm's financial profile for the candidate.
Will the overall considerations lead to a quality hire?
Will economic conditions make lateral attorney recruiting more or less competitive going forward?
As the nation's leading law firms are looking at the recession as something, metaphorically, through their back window and are thinking optimistically about their futures, the unsettled economic conditions should have different effects on lateral recruiting competitiveness. (According to The American Lawyer's 10th annual law firm survey, 75 percent of the 113 participating Am Law 200 managing partners and chairs described themselves as either somewhat or very optimistic with respect to their firms and the economy, a slight increase over 73 percent a year ago.)
The increased complexity of the legal landscape to include technology, the ratcheting effect of regulations and global business expansion will impact lateral hiring.
Large law firms anticipate that litigation, and especially IP litigation, will be a source of increased revenues. This is in large part because of the technology/software industry and its interest in protecting their intellectually property. Technology waits for no one and is forever changing and being redefined. There will be a need for more talented lateral hires to keep up with this reality.