Director, Legal Recruiting

Human ResourcesAll Practice AreasAustin, TX, Boston, MA, Charleston, SC, Charlotte, NC, Chicago, IL, Dallas, TX, Ft. Worth, TX, Harrisburg, PA, Houston, TX, Los Angeles, CA, Miami, FL, Nashville, TN, New York, NY, Newark, NJ, Orange County, CA, Palo Alto, CA, Pittsburgh, PA, Portland, OR, Raleigh, NC, Research Triangle Park, NC, San Francisco, CA, Seattle, WA, Washington, DC, Wilmington, DE

Job Description

At K&L Gates, we are looking for smart, imaginative and hard-working people with diverse backgrounds, experiences and ideas to join us.  Perhaps our search for talented visionaries and your search for important and impactful work lead to the same place.

We are seeking a Director, Legal Recruiting to join one of our US offices. The candidate will be responsible for leading recruiting operations and recruiting strategy for all associate level hiring across all US offices and lateral partner hiring in all offices globally. Responsible for building and directing a team responsible for legal recruiting strategies that align with the firm’s objectives and growth projections, to include attracting, hiring and retaining top legal talent. Candidates must be self-starters who possess the ability to work independently and as part of a team. Excellent communication skills and a commitment to providing the highest quality client service are strongly preferred.

Key relationships
Chief Officers, Advisory Council, Management Committee, PGCs, hiring partners, Diversity and WIP Committees, Office of General Counsel, HR Senior Leadership and global HR department.

Key duties include but are not limited to
• Direct full life cycle of legal recruitment to source highly qualified candidates and implement strategies that increase the firm’s capability to attract, assess, select, and onboard superior talent. Includes oversight and strategic direction.
• Lateral associate recruitment – source top level talent by leveraging various resources including Leopard Solutions, LinkedIn, an internal referral program, and other networking and social channels; manage approved templates for offer letters, search firm agreements, and other candidate and search firm communications; work with firm leadership on the movement toward practice management/recruitment from local office management/recruitment.
• Lateral partner recruitment – manage all stages of identification, assessment, and due diligence process for lateral partner candidates and groups; maintain regular communication with Global Strategic Growth Partner and other key stakeholders; lead team of firmwide recruiting professionals to manage a substantial partner pipeline of active partner candidates; onboard lateral partners; build and maintain strong relationships with practice and office leadership to align partner recruiting strategies with practice group business needs.
• Law student and entry-level recruiting – including firmwide hiring projections, strategic outreach, communications and relationships with targeted law schools; build and maintain strong relationships with law school career services at target law schools; plan strategic outreach and communication efforts; maintain hiring statistics, projections, and analyze trends; provide advice to hiring committees regarding recruitment initiatives.
• Summer associate program –  manage the process of designing and overseeing the firm’s summer program, including work assignments, evaluations/offer decisions, training and development, in coordination with the professional development team.
• Onboarding – collaborate with Firm functions such as IT, matter pricing, new business intake, data governance, client growth, professional development, D&I, and HR operations on strategic initiatives related to lateral recruiting to ensure smooth onboarding and integration of partners and associates; structure and execute firmwide First Year and Summer Associate orientation programs, lateral associate orientation and integration, and lateral partner onboarding.
• Brand communication – collaborate with client growth team to develop and maintain recruitment brand campaign and Careers website; regularly collaborate with team to ensure consistency in recruitment messaging and collateral.
• Diversity and inclusion – serve as an active member and recruiting representative to the firmwide D&I committee; collaborate closely with D&I committee members to ensure candidate assessment and hiring practices align with D&I goals; lead the recruiting team’s role in Mansfield certification process; develop and maintain new initiatives to diversify candidate pool at all levels, including national 1L client partnership program and developing strategy to diversify lateral pipeline.
• Lead the design, development, implementation and required data analytics of talent acquisition programs and systems to attract, develop, evaluate and retain talent.
• Consult with the Office of General Counsel regarding all employment, personnel, and other risk-management issues as necessary, in collaboration with the HR Business Partner team.
• Collaborate cross-functionally with all levels of management to understand business needs, align our talent strategies with the Firm’s strategic plan, and identify resources required to develop and conduct talent acquisition initiatives.
• Represent the firm within the legal recruiting industry, assess and report on market trends, recruiting opportunities, and firm recruiting performance.
• Manage and leverage relationships with external vendors in talent acquisition areas.
• Implement, own, and leverage the firm’s legal recruiting systems to streamline processes and enhance reporting.
• Manage, lead and develop a large team of legal recruiting professionals.
• Manage the operational budget for the department.


• Bachelor’s or university degree in business, human resources, or equivalent required; JD and practice experience preferred.
• Areas of expertise beneficial to success in this role include strategic planning, team development, consensus building, risk management and compliance, performance management, budget development and oversight, presentations and meeting facilitation, change management, on-boarding, process improvement, systems design and implementation, and project management.
• Extensive experience developing and leading recruiting processes for a global law firm or other professional services organizations.
• Understanding of applicable employment laws and regulations and related experience.
• Experience with selection and implementation of integrated talent management systems in conjunction with a fully integrated HRIS.
• Ability to lead, manage, and counsel others to ensure effective and efficient attainment of departmental goals.
• Ability to manage multiple priorities and competing demands; demonstrated success in managing and delivering large programs and in leading change in a demanding environment.
• Excellent oral and written communication and presentation skills; executive presence, maturity, and sound judgment to communicate effectively and gain credibility with internal and external audiences.
• Ability to lead in a complex multicultural environment with multiple stakeholders; excellent relationship-building skills and ability to influence across HR functions, global offices, and various functional departments.
• Strong business and financial acumen; ability to develop strategic plans, make sound decisions and anticipate, diagnose, and develop creative solutions to complex problems.

Additional abilities required
• Ability to handle confidential situations, maintain complete confidentiality, exercise prudent judgment, and execute tactfully.
• Travel, as necessary, to support business needs.
• Responsibilities occasionally may require an adjusted work schedule and evening/weekend hours in order to meet deadlines

Note: Nothing in this job description restricts the firm’s right to assign or reassign duties and responsibilities to this position at any time. Information provided represents the usual method of accomplishing the duties in this job.  Reasonable accommodations will be considered in appropriate circumstances.




K&L Gates is a fully integrated global law firm with approximately 2,000 lawyers across five continents. We have experienced dramatic growth in the past decade and now rank among the largest U.S. based law firms in the world.  We take pride in constantly striving for innovation, imagination and an entrepreneurial spirit. We come up with big ideas and then roll up our sleeves to get the job done, guiding our clients through their most complex issues in a variety of industry sectors and across multiple regions of the world.

The industry recognition the firm has garnered in the past five years emanates from the foundation of a global community aligned on behalf of our clients. The people at K&L Gates are committed to working together to create a legacy for each other, the firm, our clients, and the communities in which we serve. We thrive in an inclusive and socially conscious environment that embraces diversity and takes a holistic approach to the career evolution of all our professionals.

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We offer a dynamic work environment and excellent benefits.


The Firm is an equal opportunity employer. It is the policy of the Firm that employment decisions shall be based on merit, qualifications and competence. Employment practices shall not be influenced or affected by virtue of a person’s race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status, disability, military status or any other characteristic protected by applicable law. This policy governs all aspects of employment including, without limitation, recruiting, hiring, compensation, benefits, promotion, assignment and dismissal. In addition, it is the Firm’s policy to provide an environment that is free of unlawful harassment of any kind including, without limitation, that which is sexual, racial, age-related, disability-related or ethnic background-related.