- Posted by Poston Communications
- On June 10, 2021
- Chambers and Partners, Chambers law firm rankings, Chambers submissions
In Chambers USA’s June 8 webinar, “How-To Chambers: USA 2021 Edition,” Head of USA Research Development Kush Cheema and Deputy Editors Alek Tomasevic, Joseph Chapman and Zahra Damji came together to address frequently asked questions and offer guidance regarding the submission process.
When it comes to the complex Chambers submissions, questions abound. What is the most important part of the submission? How detailed should work highlights be? Should every individual involved in the matter be included?
Chambers’ advice? Keep it simple and be concise. Work highlights should be well-written, to-the-point, and include only partners and any senior associates who played a key role in the matter. Regarding attorney bios, avoid repeating content elsewhere in your submission or summarizing work highlights. Chambers researchers want to get a sense of where an attorney’s specialties lie without creating a large burden of work; editors even accept links to bios on firm websites. Matter descriptions should be written like a concise news article, beginning with a lead and followed by supporting details.
The researchers also explained that they understand 2020 was an unusual year and ultimately will be more receptive to matters that fall outside of 12 months.
Though firms have less control in this phase of the Chambers process, abiding by a few best practices can help research run smoothly and ultimately strengthen your firm’s submission.
In selecting referees, they explained that, as with last year, they encourage referee lists to be a 50-50 gender mix, but it is not required. Further, referees who are ethnically diverse are valued highly. They also volunteered that referees lower on the org chart often generally provide better information and are more available to speak with researchers; the associate GC probably has more time for a call and may have worked directly with the law firm, for example.
Peer feedback is more important on market-oriented practices, such as M&A, and less important on practices, such as L&E, where there is less engagement among firms, they explained.
No referees are needed for nationwide practices this year because it is assumed those people were called for the corresponding state practices. However, an exception exists for any practice with no state equivalent.
Diversity and Inclusion
Chambers USA introduced Diversity and Inclusion statistics in the submission template in 2021 submissions. This voluntary, online diversity survey asks for the usual metrics, such as the breakdown of male and female lawyers and the proportion of diverse attorneys. While disclosures and participation are at-will and do not affect ranking decisions, Chambers is making greater efforts to include diverse referees, interviewees and staff.