When Linklaters became the latest major firm to modify its lockstep system last week it was yet another sign of an industry moving away from traditional pay structures that many say fail to meet the needs of the aggressive modern market.

Linklaters’ step followed similar moves by Magic Circle rivals Allen & Overy—whose own changes have fueled U.S. growth—and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, which has been in rude health in the U.S. hiring market in 2021, and notably Cravath Swaine & Moore in a move already seen as highly influential.