Decipher and ALM Intelligence Release Report on Lateral Hiring

Risky Business: Rethinking Lateral Partner Hiring

Review the full report and download the Executive Summary

St. Louis, MO – February 26, 2019 – In partnership with ALM Legal Intelligence, Decipher has released “Risky Business: Rethinking Lateral Partner Hiring,” an inaugural report analyzing the opportunities and risks law firms face in their lateral hiring strategies.

The Risky Business report draws its insights from a survey conducted by Decipher and ALM Intelligence, interviews with numerous heads of talent from national and international firms, and data from ALM Intelligence’s Legal Compass, which includes information on over 10,000 lateral partner moves.

The report finds the allure of increased revenue and profitability has dulled firms’ senses to the immense risks inherent in the lateral hiring process and finds that the cost of acquiring lateral partners is incredibly high as are the failure rates. Beyond these financial considerations, firms face significant risks from issues related to malpractice, workplace harassment, and conflicts.

“The survey results and report really punctuate the challenges firms face in achieving measurable results from their lateral hiring programs. This is a clarion call for greater transparency in the lateral market,” said Howard Rosenberg, Co-Founder and CEO of Decipher.

The collective wisdom of the industry seems relatively clear – firms need to carefully consider how they source and vet their candidates, says Michael Ellenhorn, Co-Founder and General Counsel of Decipher. “The traditional methods just aren’t working. With failure rates at close to 50%, these mistakes are taking quite a toll on firm performance.”

Review the full report and download the Executive Summary here.

About Decipher

For law firms who plan to grow with lateral hires, Decipher ( is the corporate intelligence provider that lowers risk and empowers better decision making. Unlike basic screening services, we combine quantitative data with human intelligence to accurately assess candidates’ business, legal skills, work style and character. Armed with this information, our clients grow safely and more efficiently, with success rates four times the industry average.

About ALM Intelligence

ALM Intelligence, a division of ALM Media LLC, supports legal, consulting, and benefits decision-makers seeking guidance on critical business challenges. Our proprietary market reports and analysis, rating guides, prospecting tools, surveys, and rankings, inform and empower business leaders to meet business challenges with confidence.

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