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Top 5 Tips to Get Hired In House in 2018

By George Khoury, Esq. on January 10, 2018 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

Beyond reviewing the places where in-house attorney jobs get posted and then actually applying to the postings, there are quite a few things you can do to increase your chances of actually getting hired.

Like any job, if you know what the actual duties of the job will be, tailoring your resume and cover letter to highlight your most relevant experience is critical. And if you don't have in house experience, you'll really want to stress prior transferable skills, training, or if you don't have either of those, then just hope your connections will be able to carry you through the door.

Below you can find five of the best tips for getting hired in house.

1. What Companies Want When Shopping for In-House Counsel

When applying for an in house job, depending on the specific role, certain skills could be valued rather highly. If you'll be representing the company and advising regarding important decisions, having a business mindset is really important. However, if you'll be primarily responsible for farming out work to outside counsel, then being a well connected lawyer could make all the difference.

2. What Is the Timeline for Getting Your Next In-House Job?

Although most lawyers believe that non-IP attorneys usually have to put in five to ten years practicing before moving in house, this is nothing more than a professional legend. There are many paths in house, and some corporations, from startup to megacorp, will hire recent grads in house.

3. Moving In-House: The Importance of Culture Fit

If you can get some inside info about a company's culture, or even glean some inside info based on your interviewer's office décor, you may want to consider finding a way to show off just how well you'd fit in. Though you may want keep in mind that you are a lawyer, and if the company culture requires some ethical bending, you could be walking into a trap if you play along, as the company may be relying on you to keep them on the right path, legally, at least.

4. Going From Government to In-House: Tips and Warnings

Unless you worked for one of the government agencies that is a scourge to businesses, like the SEC, or DOJ, many businesses will not find that much value in a government lawyering background. However, keeping that in mind, you can focus your search to businesses that might actually find your government lawyering experience beneficial to their enterprise.

5. What Should I Wear to My In House Interview?

While what you wear may not be the most important part of an interview, dressing inappropriately can certainly send the wrong signal. Also, dressing to the part, and to the culture, could very well be what sets you apart from other well qualified candidates.

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