Blog post

In a candidate-driven IP market – how do you stand out from the crowd?


I want you to imagine a hypothetical situation. Let’s say that after a an extensive round of interviews a highly sought-after qualified patent attorney has 3 offers on the table from different firms. It’s a decision which will have a huge impact not just on their future career, but potentially on the firm they choose to join – and on the two who miss out.

This is a tricky situation for a recruitment consultant like me who’s working alongside the candidate and trying to help them make the right decision. Often there’s not much to choose between the offers themselves, it often comes down to which of the firms is the organisation the candidate would most like to work for. So when you’re thinking about hiring new talent, it’s worth taking a minute to think about how you differentiate yourself from the competition. 

Having a clear unique selling point – and presenting it effectively to both recruiters and candidates – is something I’m convinced many IP firms could put more energy into. It’s absolutely crucial to ensuring that candidates facing a similar dilemma will pick you over the competition, but not everybody in the market consistently makes the effort. Next time you’re about to meet a potential new hire, ask yourself the following, and try and makes sure you get these points across in your conversation:


  • Does the Legal 500 recognise the firm in the top 10?
  • Are you – or a colleague – a leader in the practice area who candidates would be excited to work with?
  • Is your business ranked gold by the World Trademark Review 1000?
  • Have you won IP awards?
  • Is your firm’s culture unique in some way? What about your training programme or your commitment to continuous development?
  • Ultimately - what makes you stand out that will appeal to candidates?


As I’ve commented in previous posts the market for talent in the IP industry is increasingly competitive. I believe the firms who make this extra effort will reap the rewards by attracting more of the top talent - and we all know that this can be the difference between success and failure in the long term.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the issue - who are the firms that stand out? 


Your bullet points and leading comments are (obviously) highly pertinent from a technical viewpoint in the IP industry. However, I think you could have expanded the last bullet point - no matter how qualified a Patent Attorney is he/she is not an automaton, thus there must be some effort to make the IP firm cosmetically attractive as well as on repute.

  • Posted by Christopher Gordon
  • on Thursday December 3, 2015 09:13

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