‘TIS THE SEASON? - The pandemic pushed the official OCI season from August 2020 to January 2021 and, as Law.com’s Dan Roe reports, made the process more cutthroat than ever, with firms flouting the rules and reaching out to candidates early. While that has always been the case to a certain extent, this year the competition appears to be particularly intense, with one legal recruiter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, telling Roe he knows of at least one Am Law 100 firm that offered candidates signing bonuses if they committed prior to January 1. The good news, however, is that there’s also heightened competition for diverse hires, which is forcing firms to find innovative ways to expand their pipelines.

LET IT RIDE - We told you yesterday that law firms’ traditional aversion to risk is likely keeping many of them from investing in legal tech startups. They simply don’t like to gamble. But as the haunted hayride that was 2020 made clear, you can plan all you want but you never know what horrors wait around the corner. As Perkins Coie managing partner Bill Malley told Law.com’s Dylan Jackson: law firms this year will have to place a series of “bets” that will touch nearly every aspect of their operations, from real estate and remote work to staffing levels and vaccine requirements. How the industry will handle making decisions with imperfect information remains to be seen, but Malley said it really doesn’t have a choice but to adapt. “You kind of need to make a bet,” he said. “You can’t wait to see how the world is going to change so you’re deciding now.”

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