Davis Polk
4.0 of 5 38 reviews
www.davispolk.com New York, NY 1000 to 5000 Employees

Davis Polk Reviews in New York City, NY

Updated Jun 13, 2014

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4.0 22 reviews

                             

86% Approve of the CEO

Davis Polk Managing Partner Thomas J. Reid

Thomas J. Reid

(7 ratings)

89% of employees recommend this company to a friend
22 Employee Reviews Back to all reviews
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    Great team environment but overworked employees

    Corporate Legal Assistant (Former Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsThe value of working for Davis Polk as a Corporate Legal Assistant is the exposure and ability to work on big cases. The teamwork environment also makes it easy to establish your reputation as a hardworking and reliable paralegal among the attorneys.

    ConsParalegals are overworked and almost work in the same capacity as junior associates in the firm. You are expected to put in the overtime and accede to last minute demands of the transaction/case if help is needed. This is not a place for a work/social life balance, it is for building your career as an entry-level Legal Assistant.

    Advice to Senior ManagementThere needs to be a better bonus and incentivizing structure for Legal Assistants, especially for "career paralegals" and plan to stay long-term (past 2 years) with the firm.

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    Legal Support

    Legal Support (Former Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsRespectful, nice atmosphere, decent pro-bono

    ConsNo work/life balance, cut a lot of programs/benefits

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Best employer ever

    Associate (Current Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsThe Tiffanys of law firms

    ConsWall Street hours year round

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Interesting and challenging (in a good way)

    Corporate Legal Assistant (Current Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsGiven a lot of responsibility upon demonstrating skills

    ConsCan be very long hours

    Advice to Senior ManagementContinue to foster the communication between senior associates and legal assistants

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    Awesome culture, great experience, friendly people, best place to work in NY Biglaw

    Associate (Current Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsPeople treat you with respect and make a real effort to avoid needless late night and weekend work, firm morale is very high, consensus is that the firm is headed in the right direction and expanding strategically both from a practice area perspective and geographically. Vacation time is absolutely sacred and everyone takes all 4-5 weeks.

    ConsHours can be long and very unpredictable, but this is the nature of the industry. Not a lot of firm-wide events, would be nice to have some more opportunities for social interaction with colleagues.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    Great firm and great opportunities

    Associate (Former Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsWe will work with talented people. You will have great clients who are able to pay a lot for lawyers. You will have exciting work.

    ConsYou will work long hours. You will get a lot of training too, but the learning curve is steep and there will be lots of situations where you will have to sink or swim.

    Advice to Senior ManagementKeep up the good work

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    One of the best places to work in Big Law. But you're still working in biglaw.

    Associate (Current Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsThe best reason to work at Davis Polk is the people. People are (generally) kind and interested in getting the work done, not interested in embarrassing one another or being rude.

    ConsBecause people are kind, they often fail to give good feedback for fear of being rude. Also, working in big law is crappy, no matter what firm you work at. Davis Polk is the best of a bad bunch.

    Advice to Senior ManagementManagement doesn't need my advice, the firm is very well run. Big law is probably in for a decline in the coming years but DPW management is very good and the firm will weather the decline better than most.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    The best place to be a legal assistant in NYC (take that as you will)

    Legal Assistant (Former Employee)
    New York, NY

    Pros-Access to some very high profile cases, most of which you'll read about in the news. The firm counts some of the largest, most powerful companies in the world as its clients. This is a harsh economy for most firms. Not this one. Davis Polk has been around forever and will continue to thrive due to its longstanding corporate relationships.
    -Access to top-notch lawyers. Granted, your face-time with partners will be very limited, but the associates here are cream of the crop. Really valuable for networking/law school recommendations/general advice.
    -Excellent firm culture. No yelling. Some reviewers who are attorneys may complain about how the firm seems "passive aggressive" in that people are very nice but will stab you in the back. I haven't witnessed that firsthand but as a legal assistant you are probably not important enough to have that happen to you. One of the upsides of being low on the food chain is that nobody has any reason to be anything but nice to you.
    -Collegiality: really feels like a team. Managers genuinely care about your workload and will generally stick up for you when you get unreasonable requests.
    -Name recognition: Davis Polk turns heads in the world of law. Sounds superficial but in the legal world, these things matter on your resume.
    -Perks are well above average for law firms: great cafeteria, dinner & car service home on late nights, beautiful building, law school admissions panels for legal assistants, etc.

    All said, this is a good place to work immediately after college. Just don't get stuck for more than 3 years because there are no opportunities for upward mobility without a JD, and salary increases are not significant. I don't know of any other firms of similar type and caliber that have more satisfied legal assistants. Just have realistic expectations when applying--it's a good 'stepping stone' job if you are at least considering law school--and this job will be a great experience.

    Cons-Salary. $40k base is tough to live off of in NYC. Overtime helps but you'll have to work hard to see any real savings. No significant bonuses.
    -Work is often unfulfilling and monotonous. This is NOT specific to Davis Polk, but rather a trait of this position across Biglaw.
    -You have to carry around, and check, a Blackberry. You'll get used to it, but you won't stop hating the constant buzzing of incoming emails.

    Advice to Senior Management-Regular work schedule should be 40 hours/week instead of 35 to help with the salary issue. We don't need to get off at 5:30--we're young and could use the extra $.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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    It was a great experience!

    Associate (Current Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsHighly professional and brilliant lawyers across the board. Don't think you'll find any other law firm with a deeper bench and that will give associates as much responsibility so early in their careers.

    ConsThe hours can be long and communication about partnership prospects can be opaque.

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend

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    As white shoe firms go, this is an above-average one to work for.

    Tech Support (Former Employee)
    New York, NY

    ProsGreat coworkers; very friendly management; excellent benefits (for full-time employees); flexible schedule; nice work culture; lots of opportunities for growth

    ConsBristly staff and attorneys; somewhat stuffy partners and upper management; antiquated work environment; slow to upgrade technology; understaffed; lack of communication between departments

    Yes, I would recommend this company to a friend – I'm optimistic about the outlook for this company

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Glassdoor is your free inside look at Davis Polk reviews and ratings in New York City, NY — including employee satisfaction and approval rating for Davis Polk CEO Thomas J. Reid . All 22 reviews posted anonymously by Davis Polk employees.