This just in. BigLaw firms can increase their standing among overworked associates by 1) raising associate pay and 2) letting associates know what’s going on. In a recent American Lawyer profile, Foley Hoag partners and associates talk about how “increased communication” is one reason the firm moved up 92 places in an annual
beauty pageant known as the associates survey. That, and “restoring” starting associate pay to $160,000. And moving other associate pay levels up to “market level.” With the pay bumps, American Lawyer offers up this startling conclusion: “[m]oney makes associates happy with their firms, too.”
Maybe it’s just us (and we said it here before about bumped up Wachtell salaries) but cash for associates is a no-brainer. Sure, pro bono scores for Foley increased a bit, as did openness about finances. But the biggest jump, again, came not because of a feel-good cumbaya demystification of the partnership process, but because of pay. Money still talks. Go ahead and file that now.