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Silicon Valley’s In-House Hiring Takes Hit From High Cost of Living

Caroline Spiezio LAW.COM

The rent is too damn high in Silicon Valley—and it’s driving off in-house candidates.

Bay Area legal recruiters said it has become increasingly common for in-house candidates at all levels to turn down offers in Silicon Valley, explicitly citing “cost of living” as the reason for their decision. The shrinking pool of available candidates coupled with growing demand for in-house counsel is keeping positions open in the region for longer than usual.

Carol Warren Simon, a managing director at legal recruiting firm Major, Lindsey & Africa’s San Francisco in-house practice group, said she’s seen legal departments struggle to attract nonlocal candidates for “mid- and lower-level attorney roles” with five to 10 years of experience.

Candidates have explicitly told her, too, that “cost of living” is their reason for turning jobs down. That’s a shift from when she started in legal recruiting around five years ago.

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