The number of articling jobs continues to slump

By: July 22, 2015

But the hireback rate stays strong

Hireback Watch

With this year’s batch of job numbers now added to our annual Bay Street Hireback Ranking, there are two takeaways: one good, the other bad.

First, the good: compared to previous years, firms are hiring back a healthy number of their articling students. Back in 2013, just 73 percent of students got hired back. Then, in 2014, the hireback rate on Bay Street shot back up to 78 percent. And, this year, that number held steady at 77 percent.

The narrative for current law students, however, is grim. Though firms reported strong hireback rates, they continue to take on fewer students in the first place. In the past six years, the number of articling gigs on Bay Street has fallen from 322 to 277 — a total loss of 45 jobs.

Indeed, this confirms what most students probably feel intuitively: the recruitment battleground on Bay Street is more competitive than ever.

Here are three of the most striking facts from this year’s hireback data:

  • After finishing in sixth place last year, Faskens posted a perfect hireback rating, vaulting it into a tie for first with Osler.
  • At Cassels Brock, the hireback fell sharply from 71% to 47%.
  • The Department of Justice took on just six articling students — a notable departure from its glory days in 2010, when it had a class of 14 students.
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