Scope of law as a career
Ruth Ana Paul has just landed her dream job at London-based law firm Clifford Chance for a salary of Rs 30 lakh a year.
“This is exactly what I wanted,” exclaims the visibly excited 22-year-old as she anxiously hopes the year to rush by before she joins the London offices of the world’s second largest law firm as a trainee solicitor next August.
Ruth is not alone in getting an offer from a top global law firm like Clifford Chance, which has 29 offices around the world. At least five of her peers at NLSUI in Bangalore have received international job offers from leading global law firms such as Allen & Overy and Linklaters.
Global law firms search good talent
Graduates of IITs and IIMs getting offered such salaries is by now passe in India, but Ruth’s offer is a bit of a surprise : she is only a final year student at the country’s top law school.
The trend of global investment banks or consulting firms making a beeline to top Indian business schools for talent has been long chronicled, but law seems to be the new area that is drawing global firms in their search for good talent.
India is a fantastic talent pool
“We hire graduates from India into our training programmes because India is a fantastic talent pool,” says Jonathan Brayne, chairman of Allen & Overy’s India group, which has been recruiting from Indian law schools for three years. While this may be a testament to the talent pool available in the country, at another level it’s also reflective of the new emerging global economic order.
“We also want the diversity of our client base to be reflected by a similar diversity among our lawyers. As we do an increasing volume of India-related work, we want to have a growing number of lawyers from India,” added Brayne.
International law firms eye Indian talents
Besides Clifford Chance, Allen & Overy and Linklaters, other international law firms eyeing India include Jones Day and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer. Many of them already have informal tie-ups with domestic law firms to exchange clients and spot fresh talent.
And it’s not just among firms such as these that Indian law graduates are in demand. They are also finding jobs with international organisations like Unesco, Unicef, consultancy firms such as McKinsey and Boston Consulting Group, non-governmental organisations and legal process outsourcing companies.