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The A-List, published annually in July, is based on rankings taken from four ALM surveys that ALM Legal Intelligence conducts throughout the year. Both revenue per lawyer and pro bono ranks are taken from the Am Law 200 while the Diversity Scorecard) and the Midlevel Associates Survey provide the diversity and associate satisfaction ranks, respectively. The A-List formula provides a collective measurement of the most successful and committed firms in the United States. Data fields include:
* A-List Rank
* Firm Name and Location
* Overall A-List Score
* Revenue per Lawyer Score and Rank
* Pro Bono Score and Rank
* Midlevel Associates Score and Rank
* Diversity Score and Rank
To be named of the 20 firms on the prestigious A-List, The American Lawyer starts with the four different surveys that rated firms' performances for the previous fiscal year. Firm rankings are converted to points by inverting the score. The values are then weighted to find the overall scores. The following are the four components of The A-List: Revenue per Lawyer, Pro Bono, Associate Satisfaction, and Diversity.
The true A-List consists of the first 20 ranked firms as published in The American Lawyer. Entire list comprises 200 firms and is available in the ALM Legal Intelligence database, however firms 21-200 are listed as relative ranking and shown for illustrative purposes only.
REVENUE PER LAWYER (RPL) RANKINGS come from The Am Law 100 and 200 reports, which are based on the previous fiscal year. A firm’s rank for The Am Law 200 is inverted to come up with its points for the A-List. For example, the number one firm gets 200 points, and the number 200 firm receives one point.
PRO BONO RANKINGS are derived from the per capita hours and number of firm lawyers (number of lawyers in U.S. offices only as of December 31) who performed at least 20 hours of service annually. The rankings for the Pro Bono list are inverted to come up with point values for the A-List, as described for the RPL points, above.
ASSOCIATE SATISFACTION RANKINGS are determined from The American Lawyer’s annual survey of midlevels (third-, fourth-, and fifth-year associates). Any firm with at least 10 midlevels may participate in this survey. In 2008, for example, 157 firms returned at least ten responses, which qualified those firms for a national ranking. Because there were fewer than 200 firms on the Midlevel Survey list, for the purposes of the A-List, the top-ranked firm received a score of 200 and the bottom-ranked received a score of 44.
DIVERSITY RANKINGS come from The American Lawyer’s Diversity Scorecard, which ranks firms based on their percentage of U.S.lawyers who are from a minority group. In the past, rankings were based only on the minority percentage of all U.S. attorneys. Starting in 2010 we revised our rankings to stress the importance of hiring and promoting minority attorneys to partnership positions. Our new diversity score was created by adding the minority percentage of all U.S. attorneys at the firms surveyed to the minority percentage of all U.S. partners at those firms
Am Law 200 firms that did not participate in one or more of the other surveys did not receive any points for those surveys.
To come up with the overall A-List score, The American Lawyer doubled the points for both revenue per lawyer and pro bono and added them to the points from the associate satisfaction and diversity surveys. Firms were then ranked by their total scores. Only the top 20 form The A-List.