Wilson Elser "billable hours" Reviews | Glassdoor.co.in

Wilson Elser Employee Reviews about "billable hours"

Updated Sep 11, 2019

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Found 222 reviews

2.9
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35%
Recommend to a Friend
79%
Approve of CEO
Wilson Elser CEO Dan McMahon
Dan McMahon
54 Ratings
Pros
Cons
  • "Billable hours are high and certain partners only see numbers(in 20 reviews)

  • "Miserable women, non caring partners, poor management of support staff(in 12 reviews)

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Reviews about "billable hours"

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  1. Helpful (5)

    "Demoralizing"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend

    I worked at Wilson Elser full-time

    Pros

    Possibility of varied and interesting work depending on location.

    Cons

    Billable hours are the idol of this firm. Policies encourage intense competition for hours and revenue generation, resulting in overworked and stressed attorneys and staff. That, in turn, leads to what is generally an unpleasant environment. If you desire any level of work-life balance, this is not the place to achieve it.

    Advice to Management

    Focus less on maximizing profits for the few at the top and more on quality, culture, and lifestyle. You'll still make plenty of money, and you'll realize greater stability and a more desirable environment.

    Wilson Elser2018-09-13
  2. Helpful (1)

    "Associate attorney"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Wilson Elser full-time

    Pros

    Depending on who you work for, the partners can be great resources and willing to teach.

    Cons

    Billable hours are high and certain partners only see numbers.

    Wilson Elser2018-08-28
  3. Helpful (22)

    "Big Firm Hours and Expectations with Small Firm Pay"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate Attorney in White Plains, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I worked at Wilson Elser full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    1. Great experience (except for the no trial part, see below) working in a variety of case types, handling everything from the answer up until trial. But experience is what you get when you don't get what you want, right? Which is a real salary commensurate with the job. 2. Pretty good training and education. Decent guidance on how to become a real lawyer and do what you don't learn in law school. 3. The respect... and prestige of working at a big firm goes far in building your resume and looking for your next job. 4. Good job security. They really do not fire attorneys. I heard if they don't want to keep you, they'll encourage you to leave, allowing you to transition. 5. Good benefits -- health, dental, life, 401k (no match), FSA, CBA, corporate discounts. Fake PTO, though (see below). 6. Excellent support staff for attorneys. Many Secretaries are smart and know all procedures. File clerks handle files for you and do it very well. Brilliant IT people. Remote dictation and word processing service make life easy.

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    Cons

    1. Baited and switched from before I even accepted the offer. After I got the offer, I asked about the work hours for attorneys and was told it varies, some attorneys work 9-6, some work more. I was not told about the insane 2100 billable hour requirement until after I started. Some nights, I worked past midnight. 2. Raises are so minimal. If you have not been there for a full year, expect around 1.5%. The maximum... annual raise is 8%, and if you reach your hours, then bonuses, if they are given at all, are still only 4-figures. They are completely discretionary. 3. Constant hypocrisy in billing. All they want you to do is bill bill bill, but when you do, it's: a) you can't bill for this! b) why are you billing for this? c) how did you bill so much for this? Not to mention the tons of unbillable work you have to do that does not count towards your 2100. 4. The vacation time they give you is a mirage. You get 22 PTO days in your first year, then 27 each year thereafter, but you could never possibly take all of it and still meet your hours requirement. Every day you take is just hours you have to make up, and expect to be asked to work while sick or on vacation. Fakation. 5. They are a big law firm with 800 attorneys, and they pretend to be big law, but the salaries don't justify it. Don't expect to make 6 figures until at least your 6th year -- if you're lucky. Some junior partners don't even make the $160K that a first year associate makes at the real Big Law firms. 6. If you do happen to bring in business as an associate, don't expect it to mean much. I brought in a case from a big insurance company and it was barely recognized. They don't give commissions. 7. Don't expect to try a case as an associate. They only let partners do it. 8. Minimal work-life balance. Expect to be on call 24/7 and to cancel weekend plans on no notice.

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    Advice to Management

    Pay your Associates at a rate commensurate with the amount of work they do.

    Wilson Elser2017-12-28
  4. Helpful (15)

    "Partner"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Wilson Elser full-time

    Pros

    A great place to be to get useful experience and move on to a different law firm.. If you have no desire to earn a lot of money or have your intangible contributions valued, this is your type of firm.

    Cons

    No camaraderie, only internal competition among partners. Rampant padding of hours encouraged by the firm's minimum requirement of 2200 billable hours annually for associates. No recognition of intangibles and other leadership qualities that make certain law firms truly great . A stifling, negative atmosphere for all employees and partners, except the chosen few at the top of the pyramid who take home most of the... profits. Opening more and more offices but the profits per partner do not increase, only the gross collections do. Toxic at all levels of the partnership. Executive Committee membership depends on who you work for and how much business you bring in, not on great client service and quality of work or the many intangibles that should be, but are not, valued. Very unprofessional.

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    Advice to Management

    This second generation partnership will implode unless there is a complete attitude adjustment starting at the top. Wilson Sr. is gone but his power, cynicism and negativity lives on through the next generation. The cut throat nature of the partnership is encouraged at the top levels of the executive committee. You will reap what you sow, sooner or later.

    Wilson Elser2017-10-19
  5. Helpful (4)

    "Associate"

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    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Associate Attorney in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Wilson Elser full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Gain litigation experience quickly; gain familiarity with other local firms and judges. Paid maternity leave. Free CLEs and CLE tracking.

    Cons

    High turnover of associates. Comparably low salary in light of the heavy work load. Long hours and Saturdays expected. Politics. Heavy focus on billable hours requirements.

    Wilson Elser2017-08-01
  6. Helpful (2)

    "Attorney"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Attorney in Dallas, TX
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Wilson Elser full-time for more than 5 years

    Pros

    Good Big Law reputation; offices accross the U.S.; stability ; friendly work environment.

    Cons

    Not much guidance given to associates, and work experience is highly dependent upon the partner with whom the associate is working. Salaries lower than most Big Law firms. Heavy focus on billable hours. Not much room for autonomy or advancement. Very little actual diversity amongst attorneys.

    Wilson Elser2017-06-21
  7. Helpful (1)

    "Associate"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in New York, NY

    I have been working at Wilson Elser full-time

    Pros

    Amazing learning opportunities and growth potential! It is true that you get great hands-on experience at this firm. Although I have only been here for 2 months, I have learned a lot and have participated in litigation practices in which only more senior associates usually participate. Also, the supervising partner of my team is incredible, patient, reasonable, and considerate. Good work/life balance. A typical... work day for me is from 9 am - 7 pm. My workload is constantly busy; therefore, I'm able to bill between 8.5 to 9 hours a day (even after taking an hour lunch), which is more than enough. The firm hosts tons of CLEs per year so you can fulfill your CLE requirements in-house. They even track your CLE credits for you! The location is also really convenient (access to trains and buses) with loads of places to eat. Starbucks on every street (literally). Your experience at this firm will depend on who you work with, but that's normal for other firms as well. Overall, everyone that I've encountered at this firm is really nice and helpful.

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    Cons

    High billable hour requirement (2100 hrs), but with my workload, I haven't had trouble meeting the monthly requirement. The pay (although not terrible) could be better for a firm of this size. However, the pay is pretty could for an insurance defense firm.

    Wilson Elser2017-06-14
  8. "Work Review"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I have been working at Wilson Elser full-time

    Pros

    - great training - partner specific - great coworkers

    Cons

    - heavy focus on billable hours

    Wilson Elser2017-02-28
  9. Helpful (7)

    "Pay your attorneys more!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Attorney in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Wilson Elser full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Wilson Elser is great for a young attorney as it provides Free Cles, training opportunists and ability to go to court and depose parties within 6 months.

    Cons

    2100 billable hours for 62-80k is a joke. Attorneys will work harder and stay if you either pay them more or lower the billables. Don't be shocked when 10 attorneys leave every 6 months.

    Advice to Management

    Pay your attorneys more or lower the billables. Talent is literally walking out the door, which is terrible since Wilson Elser really provides great opportunities to learn and be a great attorney.

    Wilson Elser2017-02-02
  10. Helpful (3)

    "Attorney"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Career Opportunities
    • Compensation and Benefits
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee 

    I worked at Wilson Elser full-time

    Pros

    The location had a small office feel but had big firm clients, tech and resources. Office location was also convenient.

    Cons

    Very burocratic and employees treated as billable hours. All associates compared across the board with no consideration of location or type of law practiced.

    Wilson Elser2017-01-07
Found 222 reviews