Casually browsing lawyer job search sites is a waste of time for most lawyers. At least the way it is typically done. Lawyers should only spend time on job search sites after completing several initial steps in the career transition process. Even then, the time spent on those sites should be for short periods as part of an information gathering exercise.
Then, why am I writing a long article about lawyer job search sites? Because I know the first thing most lawyers do when thinking about a career transition is to look at job search sites. That’s reality.
I have to provide what lawyers want, not what I think they need. If I don’t, you won’t even consider other ways I might serve you.
Lawyer Job Search Sites In Career Transition Process
Before we get to the lawyer job search site list, let me briefly describe how spending time on search sites should fit into your career transition process.
● First, you need to reconsider your life and career to identify your true purpose and passions. If you don’t bring your purpose and passions into better alignment with your job and career, you will soon find the same frustrations and unhappiness in any job.
● Second, recognize your interests and strengths. Not only your interests and strengths in law, but also non-legal interests and skills you have developed in your life. Your strengths also include the unique characteristics reflected in your personality. Prepare to build on your interests and strengths in finding a new job.
● Third, spend the time to envision a picture of your perfect career and life. Until you are clear about your vision, you won’t know how your next job will help you move along a career path to achieve your ideal career and life.
You won’t be ready to set goals and take action to revitalize your career until going through the preceding steps.
At that point, you might spend a limited amount of time on legal or other job search sites. You probably will not get a job just by applying for positions on job search sites. However, you might get valuable information and leads to use to in your career transition process.
Tips For Using Lawyer Job Search Sites
The search terms you use on job search sites is the most important factor in obtaining relevant job listings. Even at a high level, a keyword can make an enormous difference in the search results. A recent job search on the LawJobs site for the word “lawyer” only returned a list of 46 lawyer jobs, but a job search for the word “attorney” returned 504 lawyer jobs.
Experiment using a variety of keywords in your job search queries. Each search engine and site are different. While most search engines focused on the legal market favor the keyword “lawyer”, this is not always the case. Search engines and sites focused on the corporate market seem to prefer the keyword “attorney”. You probably want to use both keywords for your initial lawyer job search queries.
After you have completed the broadest search for potentially relevant jobs, you should narrow your search, or you will waste a considerable amount of your precious time reviewing irrelevant job listings. Use the filters provided to weed out irrelevant job listings. You may also use keywords to focus your search results.
Once you have identified the most effective and efficient way to find job listings on a site, save that search to use again later. Some sites allow you to save search queries. If you can’t save the search query, make a note to yourself for later searches.
Many job search sites allow you to be notified by email when a new job is listed matching the parameters of one of your relevant searches. Take advantage of this feature. You don’t want to review the same search results continually or try to remember the date you last searched a site.
Besides the job search sites listed here, also identify industry-focused job search sites. These sites are the more useful than general sites for lawyers focused in a practice area or in a particular industry.
Explore websites of industry associations and groups to locate these valuable job search resources for lawyers. For example, the eFinancialCareers (http://www.efinancialcareers.com) site allows you to search for lawyer jobs in the financial industry. Recent searches on the eFinancialCareers site returned approximately 70 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 24 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Websites Specifically For Lawyer Job Searches
General Lawyer Job Search Sites
The websites in this section include sites specifically devoted to lawyer job searches. Some of the sites also have lawyer job search resources and additional career information.
American Bar Association Career Center – The ABA Career Center has an excellent collection of free articles and other resources on legal careers and lawyer job searches.
Recent searches on the ABA site returned approximately 43 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 323 jobs for the term “attorney.”
GoBiglaw – As the name implies, the GoBiglaw website is focused on lawyer jobs in Big Law. The site uses the Indeed (see “General Job Sites”) job search engine.
The benefit of using the GoBiglaw site is that it automatically filters lawyer job listings from Big Law. You can’t do this directly from the Indeed site, although the Indeed database of attorney jobs is much bigger than shown on GoBiglaw. The GoBiglaw site has keyword search capability and limited filtering options. A good place to check if you are looking for a job in Big Law.
Recent searches on the GoBiglaw site returned approximately 125 jobs for the terms “lawyer” and “attorney.”
LawCrossing – Harrison Barnes founded LawCrossing. He also founded Hound.com, Gig.com, BCG Attorney Search, JD Journal, Legal Authority and numerous other companies in the legal industry. Also, he established the general job search site EmploymentCrossing.com.
Recently, the LawCrossing Attorney Jobs page stated that the site listed 48,108 attorney jobs and claimed that it has “more than 25 times as many legal jobs as any other job board.” LawCrossing is one of the only job sites to charge a fee for the lawyer seeking to use most of the site’s job search functions. The site states the service is “not free” and that the cost is “negligible”. However, it appears from secondary sources (negative reviews on LinkedIn) that the service costs at least $39.95 a month.
Unfortunately, I cannot recommend LawCrossing. I have seen way too many complaints about LawCrossing’s business practices in on-line forums and elsewhere. The site has a hard sell approach. The inability to get information on the cost of the service until you provide your email address and sign up for a short free trial period is troubling. I suspect most of the listings are on other sites, and some of the listing you can see without paying don’t appear current. I recommend you look elsewhere for lawyer job postings.
EmpLawyerNet – EmpLawyerNet is one of the oldest lawyer job search sites, and the tired website design confirms it. This site is also a subscription search site. Access to the job listings cost job seekers $14.95 a month (or less with discounts or longer-term subscriptions). The site has a free list of legal recruiters. I do not have access to the site so I can’t evaluate its value.
Recently, the EmpLawyerNet site represented there were 4,391 jobs in its database.
AllLegalJobs – The AllLegalJobs site is a bare bone legal job search aggregator with “job listings from company career pages, other job boards, newspapers, and associations.” You can refine job searches using keywords, geographic location and the source of the listing. The site allows you to set up email alerts for new job listings.
Recent searches on the AllLegalJobs site returned approximately 30 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 503 jobs for the term “attorney.” Quite a few were not jobs for practicing attorneys. Most of the listings appear to be from legal recruiters.
LawJobs – LawJobs is part of ALM Network of Legal Publications. The site has over ten filters to narrow results, and you can search by keyword. You can also set up alerts for new job listings. The legal recruiter and company directories are rather lean.
Recent searches on the LawJobs site returned approximately 46 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 504 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Legal Career Network – Legal Career Network is a provider of specialty job search engines to various legal industry associations. You can search for lawyer jobs on its home site.
Recent searches on the Legal Career Network site returned approximately 62 jobs for the term “lawyer” and over 200 jobs for the term “attorney,” but many appeared to be for non-practicing jobs. There are much better places to search.
Above The Law Career Center – The ATL Career Center is one of the best sites for lawyer job search and career information, including a law firm directory, rankings, and salary information.
Recently, the ATL Career Center discontinued its attorney job search capability. Use the ATL Career Center for all the information and resources, but go elsewhere for lawyer job searches.
FindLaw – FindLaw was once a useful resource for lawyer job listings. No longer. The career information and articles are out of date. The “Search Jobs” button takes you to Indeed (see “General Job Site” list). Go directly to Indeed instead of spending time here.
Martindale-Hubbell – Martindale-Hubbell Career Center is a shadow of its former self. The job search function of the site is through the Legal Job Board Network, which uses the Job Target search engine (see “General Job Sites” list). The career and job search resources on the site are old. You will waste your time if you search here.
Recent searches on the Martindale site returned approximately 631 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 666 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Lawmatch – The search function of the site uses the Job Target search engine (see “General Job Search Sites” list). Not worth your time.
Recent searches on the Lawmatch site returned approximately 745 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 600 jobs for the term “attorney.” Many jobs listed were for paralegals and legal secretaries.
Hieros Gamos Legal Employment Center – The HG Legal Employment Center has a few job postings. The lawyer career resources are mostly outdated. Don’t waste your time.
Recent searches on the Hieros Gamos site returned approximately 5 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 25 jobs for the term “attorney.”
The Legal Job Board Network – The Legal Job Board Network is a group of legal associations and other legal websites that resell job postings for one another, market each other’s job boards, and share job content. The Legal Job Board Network uses the Job Target search engine.
Recent searches on the Job Target site returned approximately 1,079 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 1,778 jobs for the term “attorney.” A quick review of the search results found most job listings were not for lawyers or attorneys. The career resources on the site are old. Proceed with caution on sites powered by Job Target.
In-House Lawyer Job Search Sites
The websites in this section include sites specifically devoted to in-house lawyer job searches. Some of the sites also have lawyer job search resources and additional career information.
Association of Corporate Counsel Job Line – The ACC job site has extensive career resources. The resources are for all lawyers, not just in-house counsel. The ACC search results are primarily recruiter listings.
Recent searches on the ACC site returned approximately 118 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 693 jobs for the term “attorney.”
GoInhouse – The sister site to GoBiglaw (see above). The GoInhouse website is focused on in-house counsel jobs. The site uses the Indeed (see “General Job Sites”) job search engine. The benefit of using the GoInhouse site is that it automatically filters lawyer job listings from larger or more prominent companies. You cannot do this directly from the Indeed site, although the database of attorney jobs is much bigger at the Indeed site.
The GoInhouse site has keyword search capability and limited filtering options. A good place to check if you are looking for an in-house counsel job in a larger or more prominent company.
Recent searches on the GoInhouse site returned approximately 140 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 200 jobs for the term “attorney.” There appeared to be duplications between the lawyer job and attorney job searches.
Minority Corporate Counsel Association – The Minority Corporate Counsel Association (MCCA) seeks expanded hiring, retention, and promotion of minority attorneys in corporate law departments and the law firms that serve them.
Recent searches on the MCCA site returned approximately 32 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 87 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Alternative Lawyer Job Search Sites
Lawlternate – The Lawlternate website is for lawyers interested in alternative careers and start-up opportunities. The site lists jobs that some people call “JD Advantaged.” The site’s database includes positions where being a lawyer is not a requirement, but might be advantageous. The Lalternate site also allows you to view some traditional lawyer job listings. You can search by keyword and location.
Specialized Lawyer Job Search Sites
The websites in this category include sites specifically devoted to various specialty lawyer job searches. Some of the sites also have lawyer job search and career information and resources.
American Association for Justice – The American Association for Justice, formerly the Association of Trial Lawyers of America (ATLA®), is an association of plaintiff-side trial lawyers. Little here, not worth your time.
Recent searches on the American Association for Justice site returned approximately 19 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 59 jobs for the term “attorney.”
The American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) (http://careers.aipla.org/jobseeker/search/results/) The AIPLA site lists IP jobs for lawyers. AIPLA is a member of Legal Job Board Network (see separate listing). Only worth a quick look if you are looking for an IP job.
Recent searches on the AIPLA site returned approximately 26 lawyer/attorney jobs.
Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association – The Black Entertainment and Sports Lawyers Association is “leader in legal education and professional development within the United States for lawyers and professionals in the entertainment, sports, and related industries.”
Recent searches on the BESLA site returned approximately 8 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Special Counsel – Special Counsel purports to be the nation’s leading provider of legal staffing services to corporate legal departments and law firms. Special Counsel offers contract staffing, search and placement, and document reviews.
Recently, the Special Counsel site listed 465 jobs, but many did not appear to be for practicing lawyers.
American Health Lawyers Association (http://archive.healthlawyers.org/crm_queries/career/jobBrowse.cfm) – AHLA is the nation’s largest non-partisan organization devoted to legal issues in the healthcare field.
Recent searches on the AHLA site returned approximately 91 lawyer/attorney jobs.
Government Lawyer And Public Interest Lawyer Job Search Sites
The websites in this category include sites specifically devoted to government and public interest lawyer job searches. Some of the sites also have lawyer job search and career information and resources.
USA Jobs.com – USA Jobs is the official site for most all federal jobs and employment information. You can apply for jobs directly through the site. It also has information about eligibility, compensation and benefits for federal workers, including vacation time, commuter subsidies, insurance, and childcare.
Recent searches on the USA Jobs site returned approximately 146 lawyer/attorney jobs.
Department of Justice (http://www.justice.gov/legal-careers) – The career site of the DOJ. The place for Assistant United States Attorney position listings.
Recent searches on the DOJ site returned approximately 100 lawyer/attorney jobs.
OSCAR – OSCAR is the On-line System for Clerkship Application & Review. The site contains clerkship and staff positions within the federal court system. The OSCAR website allows applicants to apply directly through the site. It also has information concerning clerkships, contacting chambers and working for the federal government.
PSJD – PSJD is a National Association for Law Placement initiative. PSJD job listings include non-profit, government and other public interest jobs. The listings also include internships and postgraduate fellowships. The PSJD site has a list of almost 15,000 organizational profiles for non-profit, government, and other public interest employers.
Recent searches on the PSJD site returned approximately 291 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 716 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Idealist – Idealist is a job search site for finding employment in the non-profit world. The site also includes volunteer opportunities, a blog with stories like tips on managing student loans and a listing of events related to the non-profit world.
Recent searches on the Idealist site returned approximately 147 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 351 jobs for the term “attorney.”
General Job Search Sites
Whether you are a lawyer searching for a legal job or a lawyer leaving the law to pursue another career path, the following sites may be useful:
LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com) – The LinkedIn site is the largest professional social networking site. It is also one of the best job search sites for lawyers, if not the best.
To start your search in LinkedIn, click on the “Jobs” tab. A Jobs search box is at the top of the page. However, before you search, if you have a LinkedIn profile (and if you don’t, stop right now and complete your profile) in the “Jobs you may be interested in” section you will see a list of jobs selected for you by LinkedIn based on your profile. You can modify the LinkedIn selections by specifying a preferred geographic location, company size, and industry.
Below “Jobs you may be interested in” is a “Discover jobs in your network” section. This area contains information on law firms and companies that have job listings where you also have LinkedIn connections (another reason to build you LinkedIn connection network). The information shown includes the number of people you have relationships with at that firm or company and the number of job listings. The job listings shown are for all jobs, not just lawyer jobs. If you click on the firm or company, it will take you to the home or careers page on LinkedIn with the job listings.
Then go back up to the top of the Jobs page. Click on the “Advanced search” button and then the “More options” button. This will take you to the Advanced Search page. Type in your search keywords and specify your search filters to find the jobs on LinkedIn that fit your criteria. You can filter your search by location, company, date posted, job function, industry, and experience level.
I have just described the tip of the LinkedIn iceberg. There are many other great features in the “Jobs” section to assist lawyers searching for job listings. There are also many other ways to use LinkedIn to help lawyers in their job search.
Recent searches on the LinkedIn site returned approximately 7,847 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 5,387 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Job Search Listing Aggregators
SimplyHired – The SimplyHired website has a general job search engine that aggregates listings from job boards, news sites and company sites. You can sort job listings by relevance, date listing posted, distance from a location, job title, experience, job type (full-time, contract, etc.) and over 10 other specialty filters.
The SimplyHired sit also has an advanced search function where you can narrow a job search by keywords, distance from a particular location and other criteria. A unique feature of the site is job listings display your LinkedIn connections next to each job listing.
Recent searches on the SimplyHired site returned approximately 18,914 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 35,402 jobs for the term “attorney” that were listed in the previous 30 days. I suspect there is duplication, but there do not appear to be many non-lawyer positions in the search list, unlike many other prominent sites.
Indeed – The Indeed website is similar to the SimplyHired site. You can sort job listings by relevance, date of listing, salary range, job title, location, job type (full-time, contract, etc.) and source (employer/recruiter). The site also has an advanced search function where you can narrow a job search by keywords, distance from a particular location and other criteria.
A majority of the jobs appear to be listings by recruiting firms. There are also many job listings by companies, but it seems there are few by law firms. Clicking on most listings takes you to the website of the recruiter, company or firm behind the listing. You can register to receive emails alerting you when new job listings match your search criteria.
Recent searches on the Indeed site returned approximately 3,804 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 25,749 jobs for the term “attorney,” although some of the jobs listed were not practicing lawyer jobs. The 176 listings for attorney positions at Dave & Busters aren’t listings for lawyers. Dave & Busters has a “STUFF OUR ATTORNEYS MADE US WRITE” section in their job listings and the Indeed search engine pick that up when the keyword “lawyer” is searched.
Glassdoor – The Glassdoor website is another job aggregator. Glassdoor has user-written reviews of what it’s like to work at companies and information about what to expect during a job interview. However, Glassdoor’s sorting and filtering options are basic and not near as robust as those at SimplyHired and Indeed.
Recent searches on the Glassdoor site returned approximately 12,903 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 23,173 jobs for the term “attorney,” but these are all-time listing numbers.
Vault – The Vault website is a treasure chest of information on law firms and other professional service providers. Its annual “top” list of law firms is must see for Big Law lawyers. The top lists are also broken down by various subcategories such as “Career Outlook” and “Satisfaction”.
The Vault job search engine is powered by Indeed (see above). Since there are only a few filters for the Vault job search results, I recommend that you go to Vault for its job search information, but go directly to Indeed for any lawyer job searches to use the wide variety of filters available.
LinkUp – The LinkUp site only includes jobs on company websites; there are no listing by recruiters. This lack of recruiter listings reduces duplication or recruiter fishing expeditions for potential clients to add to their databases.
Recent searches on the LinkUp site returned approximately 1,024 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 6,915 jobs for the term “attorney.” There appears to be a fair number of listings not for practicing lawyers.
Traditional Job Search Boards
Monster (http://www.monster.com) – The Monster website is one of the oldest job search sites. Companies pay Monster to list on their site. Last year Monster expanded beyond its paid ad model and now lists jobs much like the job search aggregators. The Monster site has the usual filtering and keyword capabilities, but they are not as robust as some other sites.
Recent searches on the Monster site returned 1,000+ jobs for the term “lawyer” and 1,000+ jobs for the term “attorney.”
CareerBuilder – The CareerBuilder website has many of the same features as Monster. The majority of the listings appeared to be from recruiters.
Recent searches on the CareerBuilder site returned approximately 2,457 lawyer/attorney positions listed in the last 30 days.
Non-Traditional Job Search Sites
TweetMyJobs – The TweetMyJobs website is similar to other aggregator sites. The sites main distinguishing feature is you can have new job listings tweeted to you. Most of the listings on the site appeared to be from recruiters of a few big companies whose job listings are on most every site.
Recent searches on the TweetMyJobs site returned approximately 275 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 1,293 jobs for the term “attorney.”
Craigslist – The Craigslist website is still the Wild West for job searchers but may be worth a look if you are a lawyer searching for part-time or temporary jobs. Find your city, check under jobs, and then look at the legal/paralegal category. You can also search for jobs by keyword.
Because Craigslist is a free listing service, some of the jobs posted are not legitimate, though the vast majority are actual jobs. Use common sense when replying to job listings on craigslist.
New York Business Journal – The New York Business Journal website has a job search page. Glassdoor (see above) supplies the majority of the search results. Some search results from Career Builder are also included. Besides jobs in the New York City area, you can find jobs in over 50 other cities.
Recent searches on the New York Business Journal site returned approximately 255 jobs for the term “lawyer” and 293 jobs for the term “attorney.”
There is little reason for lawyers to spend time on job search sites until they have gone through the process of identifying their core purpose and passions, assessing their strongest skills and envisioning what their ideal career and life would look like .
Once a lawyer has done the work in the career transition process, I recommend that they spend less than 10% of their job search time on job search sites. A much more effective and efficient use of your job search time is to be networking, making direct contacts and promoting your personal brand.
Job search sites may be useful for uncovering terms that firms, companies, and recruiters use in describing your ideal job. The sites may also be helpful in identifying firms and companies in a hiring mode. Beyond that, waste little of your time on these sites.
If you have done the preliminary work, your job search efforts should be focused on making contacts and learning more about the firms, companies and industry where you will find your ideal job.
If you use lawyer job search sites in your job hunting process, I suggest you use the following sites:
LinkedIn – the best place to locate lawyer jobs. The site also has information about employers, recruiters and members of your professional network that will be useful in your job search.
SimplyHired – The best of the general job search sites for lawyers at the current time. When I researched this article six months ago, I would have picked Indeed instead, but SimplyHired has moved ahead of Indeed at his time. Both are good. You can experiment to see which one is best for your needs.
Indeed – Indeed has slipped behind SimplyHired for lawyer job searches. Six months ago, I would have put Indeed ahead of SimplyHired (see above). Not today. Both are good. You can experiment to see which one is best for your needs.
Association of Corporate Counsel Job Line – For in-house lawyer job searches.
PSJD – For non-profit, government, and other public interest job searches.
If you have a narrow job target in a specialized practice area or industry, look at the descriptions of the lawyer job search websites above to see if any might be useful to you.
I have listed none of the general lawyer job sites that cater exclusively to attorneys. I believe that they have outlived their usefulness and do not provide the value provided by listings and search functions available in the sites listed above.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
I recently formed a career consulting practice to serve lawyers and other professionals after a successful career as a practicing attorney.
Prior to starting my new business I was a:
• Equity partner at two of the largest law firms in the country
• Rainmaker who developed an annual book of business of over $3.5 million
• Winner of the Turnaround Management Association Turnaround of the Year – Large Company 2011
• Lawyer in a small boutique firm
• In-house counsel for a publicly-traded investment firm, and
• Manager at a Fortune 500 company and at several small businesses
I Now Work With Lawyers and Other Professionals to Help Them Revitalize Their Careers And Achieve Success, Prosperity and Personal Fulfillment.
You can go to my website to learn more about me.
The post “Lawyer Job Search Sites – The Good, The Bad And The Ugly” appeared first on the Greg Yates Consulting website.