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How to Create a LinkedIn Profile That Stands Out To Legal Employers

When it comes to selling your value to a recruitment company like Clayton Legal and the clients we work for, there are a few pivotal documents required to draw attention to yourself. 

The humble CV is one, followed quickly by your LinkedIn profile. 

As LinkedIn is the biggest social business network outside China, with 850 million members listed, it is more crucial than ever to leverage the opportunities your LinkedIn profile provides as a positioning tool for your legal career. 

Your LinkedIn profile has many positive attributes. Unless you share a name with a well-known person, it is highly likely that your profile, if created properly, will appear on the first page of Google. 

Even though your CV/Resume is a standard document that demonstrates your career journey, a LinkedIn profile can deliver even more insight about you as a potential recruit in an interactive and engaging style that a CV alone cannot achieve. 

In today’s post, I want to share why your profile is so important and the easy, quick wins to ensure your legal LinkedIn profile stands out from the crowd. 

Headlines and Pronouns 

Your headline is often the first piece of text a recruiter or potential hiring manager will see, so make it count. Paraphrase what you do, and the good news is LinkedIn now allows 220 characters, including spaces. Here is an example of a legal headline that works.  

“Solicitor at BLM. Working in the Housing Team dealing with insurance litigation, housing disrepairs and property damage in Liverpool” 

With D.E.I. being on most workplace agendas, LinkedIn now allows you to add your preferred pronouns on your profile. The use of pronouns will let hiring managers, colleagues or online connections know how to address you to prevent any misconceptions.  

A Professional Photo 

LinkedIn produces numerous reports that demonstrate the power of imagery and media on your profile. Profiles with a professional photograph can get 14 times more profile views vs those with selfie style images or group pictures. 

Phone technology today means there is no excuse not to have a professional LinkedIn profile picture. Ask a colleague or friend to take a photograph with their smartphone in good lighting where you shoulders and face are visible to give an honest and accurate perception of who you are professionally. 

Head and shoulders are the best shots. Your face, preferably smiling in appropriate business attire, makes the best impact. Remember, recruitment consultants viewing your profile are imagining how you will fit into their client’s organisation, so this is an easy way to make an impact.  

How To Get In Contact  

As a first start, do you have all your contact details visible?  

Make sure you have a mobile number and a Gmail/Hotmail address that is your most active and professional email account. Try to avoid the likes of 90sbaby@hotmail.com or something with your birth year in as this can indicate age bias subconsciously.  

A professional url demonstrates your attention to detail, for instance, LinkedIn.com/in/Andy Gold as opposed to LinkedIn.com/in/Andy-Gold-2671c567. 

It’s also important to include links to your blog where you share knowledge related to your sector which is a great feature a lot of LinkedIn users forget to utilise.  

Featured Section

Have you written papers or presented at a legal industry conference, or recorded any work-related videos?  

If the answer is yes, add them here, and this will certainly make you stand out from the crowd and gives recruiters or potential law firms the chance to see more of what you can do rather than just reading it on a CV. 

Your About Section

Please do not add only your essential skills or paste sections from your CV into your summary section. Use it to catch people’s attention as you share relevant information about who you are and your skills and abilities; you have 2000 characters, so make them count. 

In this section, talk about the value you will add to an organisation alongside your skillset. Be different and stand out by explaining how you might help a potential new employer solve their problems while being genuine and authentic. 

Our experience as recruiters is this attracts our attention, plus it makes it easier for us to ‘sell’ the fact you are a ‘must see’ candidate for our client and pick out your best attributes towards their needs. 

Here are some examples from LinkedIn themselves as to what they see as great profile summaries. 

Add to Profile and Open To

On the right-hand side of your profile, you will see a button that says ‘add to profile’. When you click this, it reveals all the additional sections you can add to your profile.  

From featured items to licenses and certifications, and courses and recommendations the list is endless to really boost your profile against your competitors.  

If you are open to work and currently not employed, you can add this to your profile picture by clicking the relevant button. This lets recruiters know instantly without even clicking on your profile that you are a potential candidate for their client and therefor you are most likely to be seen.  

In the ‘add your profile’ section under background, share details of all your work experience that will communicate your capability. Then list all your education and volunteer activities. Today, organisations have an active CSR programme that they love to promote to new starters; therefore, this area is essential to share too should you have experience in those departments. 

Under accomplishments, you can list publications, certifications, patents, courses, projects, honours and awards, test scores, languages and how you are involved with communities that are important to you. 

This makes it easy for a recruitment organisation to identify your skills and expertise as a potential match for their client. 

The big question is, does your profile: 

  • Help your standout? 
  • Communicate your value, including providing supporting evidence? 
  • List your work achievements? 

Share Useful Content

Depending on your current organisation and their social presence, you can share and like content until your heart is content. This unconsciously communicates to everyone how connected you are and what is important to you. When someone arrives on your profile, it is one of the first sections they can see. 

You can now share an article or even upload a compelling image or create a video on your LinkedIn profile. All of which enable you to communicate your personal brand and show recruiters areas of your work you are particularly interested in the most. 

List The Skills You Know Are Important in Legal

When it comes to legal skills, you can add up to 50, which could help you stand out to a recruitment consultant and your future employer. You don’t have to add all of them as only your top ten will be profiled, so make these the most important. 

The UK is in the grip of a skills shortage. Therefore, if you know you have in-demand skills, communicate them on your profile wherever you can. You would be surprised that this is an area often forgotten by even the best of candidates. 

Endorsements and Recommendations

We all now live and work in the review society. Social proof is a significant influencer in our current community. Who has not viewed Trip Advisor before booking a restaurant or holiday with their significant other? It is the same in the business world. 

Therefore, collecting recommendations and endorsements is crucial for your career. If you have not got any, ask for them from your contacts. All too often, people are shy about asking for validations of their work. The good news, which might surprise you, is that many people are more than willing to give you a recommendation as long as you offer to give one back in return. 

Finally, Complete Your Profile in Full

A question for you? Are you using all the features we have mentioned? 

Do you have a presentation or video on your summary? Have you got a link to a paper you have written? 

It is interesting the impression people get from reading a full LinkedIn profile. It sends a message to recruitment companies that you are a person with attention to detail and take their career and work-life seriously – a great candidate for their clients.  

About Clayton Legal 

Clayton Legal has been partnering with law firms across the country since 1999 and has built up an enviable reputation for trust and reliability during that time. We have made over 5,000 placements from Partners to Legal Executives, Solicitors to Paralegals and Legal I.T. personnel to Practice Managers.  

 

If you are building your legal team or looking for your next career move, we can help. Call us on 01772 259 121 or email us here.  

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Posted By

Lynn Sedgwick

Managing Director

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Why Soft Skill Development Will Be A Success Factor In Your Growth This Year

  • March 8, 2022

Last week, I watched an old comedy re-run and interview featuring Joan Rivers, an iconic U.S. comedian.

During the interview, she shared a quote; “life doesn’t get better; you get better”.

Something to consider for lawyers but in a different context; let me explain.

Studying the law and gaining experience to then practice takes years. The shortest possible time is around seven. Unfortunately, it does not stop there to be truly successful in your legal role.

Enter the ability to develop your soft skills.

Soft Skills For Growth

Functional or hard skills are one skill area to develop. Yet, the skills that make the most difference to accelerating your legal career or growing your law firm are the ‘soft skills’ that will help you manage your mind, communicate well consistently, and influence your team to improve their performance.

Here at Clayton Legal, we help our clients craft role descriptions for candidates who are critical for their firm’s growth.

Alongside this, we assist legal candidates in developing their legal careers where we consistently share the softer skills that need to be developed.

Self-Awareness

One of the key challenges when managing and developing a team is a lack of self-awareness from the employee.

You will hear the term emotional intelligence shared in many circles. The term was defined as a person’s ability to manage their feelings and to express those feelings appropriately and effectively.

The original book on this topic is worth getting from Amazon by Daniel Goleman.

Who has not come across a colleague in the practice who has zero idea about their impact on others? Only last week, a paralegal candidate approached us looking for a new role because of the behaviour of a new partner in the firm; yes, managers can lack self-awareness too.

It appears that every morning the manager in question would appear with a sore head, grumbling and snapping at people. The individual had no idea how his behaviour affected the team.

Self-awareness also covers motivation, empathy, self-regulation, and appropriate social skills.

Communication Skills

The legal profession includes people with effective communication skills. Summing up a case or communicating options to a client jargon-free are all expected skills. However, talking over team members in a practice meeting does not demonstrate communication excellence.

A large part of being a great communicator is the ability to listen. We can all tell the difference when someone hears the words you are saying or when they are actively listening.

As an experiment, notice how often people have their phones open during conversations or look over your shoulder at other people and what’s going on when speaking with you; worse, they sit on the edge of their seat waiting to interrupt.

I hope I have not just described you.

Active listeners, meanwhile, pay close attention to meeting presenters, offer up clarifying questions or responses, and refer back to notes in future discussions. They do not need things repeated to them because they heard them the first time, making active listeners respectful legal colleagues.

Openness to Feedback

This might sound like a different soft skill, yet a lack of openness to feedback often indicates an individual stuck in a pattern and unwilling to learn.

The ability to accept developmental feedback is critical for all of us; otherwise, how will we improve? Think about it; constructive feedback will help you do the best job possible when it comes to your legal role, and yet often, people take it personally and react defensively; when this happens, feedback is not heard.

No one is ever perfect, no matter how long they have been in a role. Reflecting on this, when did you last ‘overreact’ to feedback?

Growth Mindset

Having a growth mindset leads on from the ability to accept feedback. Individuals with a growth mindset see feedback as the gift that it is.

Their mind is focused on what is possible rather than what is not. No matter what role, you will encounter roadblocks, disappointments, and other situations that might frustrate you. A soft skill critical to your ability to persevere is having a growth mindset.

Dr Carol Dweck conducted the original work on this several years ago. Her book is well worth reading to identify if you have a growth or fixed mindset.

For instance, someone with a growth mindset who did not achieve their billable target would look at this as an opportunity to double down and focus on what they could do differently in the next quarter.

Whereas someone with a fixed mindset would see this differently, complaining that the target was too high, the clients they were working with were demanding, and the list of complaints goes on.

Adaptability and Flexibility

The last few years have been a challenge for many, yet certain employees have stood out above others; Two words describe them.

Adaptable and Flexible.

No matter your role in your law firm, the ability to adapt to change and a positive, flexible attitude about what is happening never go unnoticed.

Many people have no idea how negative they can be when something does not go their way. Worse still, they become a classic mood hoover.

Fact: Our business landscape is changing, and no matter what role you hold in an organisation, you have to be willing to adapt and change.

In summary, soft skills focus on developing a positive can-do attitude. A well-worn statement, I know, and yet developing abilities like this will help you navigate most things that are thrown your way while making you stand out as a potential new hire for a firm (as well as being areas to focus on if you are indeed in the hiring seat, and looking for a standout candidate to bring on board).

How Can We Help?

Here at Clayton Legal, we have multiple clients looking for skilled and ambitious candidates to join their teams. For a confidential conversation about your legal career goals and your next move, please contact one of our team here.

About Clayton Legal

Clayton Legal has been partnering with law firms across the country since 1999 and has built up an enviable reputation for trust and reliability during that time. We have made over 5,000 placements from Partners to Legal Executives, Solicitors to Paralegals and Legal I.T. personnel to Practice Managers.

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The Four Day Working Week: An Option For Law Firms?

The last few years have created a shift in how we work like never before. Working away from the office became the norm in 2020, with hybrid working being adopted by many last year.

New’ human centric’ ways of working have been a topic of conversation for some time. Iceland was one of the first counties in the world to trial the four-day week between 2015 and 2019.

This took place in trials run by the Reykjavík City Council in Iceland, between 2015 and 2019 to move workers to four-day weeks. Over 2,500 workers were involved across multiple industries.

The trial reports revealed less stressed workers and a lower level of burnout.

Many employees moved from a forty-hour week to thirty-five hours, working longer on the days they did work. Iceland’s working patterns are overseen by a significant union presence who have negotiated different working patterns for over 85% of the population.

Similar trials are now being held in various counties worldwide, including the U.K.

The U.K. Uptake of a Four Day Week

The four-day working week campaign started in earnest as this year began. The Guardian shared that several U.K. companies had signed up to a six-month trial to work a four-day week.

Other companies, including several law firms, have spontaneously changed their working hours.

The organisations in question spread across many sectors, training, telecoms, software, video games producers and medical imaging. All are moving from a forty-hour working week to thirty-two hours without loss of pay.

Academics will facilitate the trial at Oxford and Cambridge plus Boston College in the U.S. and the think tank ‘Autonomy’. The campaign group, 4 Day Week Global, oversees the research project.

Companies taking part in the U.K. study vary from twenty to over a hundred staff.

Let’s explore the rationale behind this move and discuss if this truly is an option for busy law firms across the U.K.

The Evidence For a Four Day Working Week

The four-day campaign cites many reasons why working four days is beneficial for all, and I’ll share them in a second.

However, surprisingly the campaigners haven’t shared that historically our ancestors didn’t work very hard at all. Before capitalism hit the world, we had a lot of leisure time, though, to be honest, not a lot of money!

Daylight drove our working hours alongside regular breaks and, drum roll, an afternoon nap. If you want to read more on this subject, look at this fascinating report on working hours from MIT.

Coming back to today, the four-day campaigners cite many logical reasons to shift the way we work in the U.K., not least the fact that we work longer hours than most of Europe.

In light of what has happened with remote and flexible working, is it time for a review?

The five-day working week was developed over a century ago here in the U.K. when John Boot was the chair of the Boots corporation.

He demonstrated that two days off each week reduced absenteeism and positively affected productivity. Therefore, the weekend became official Boots policy in 1934; maybe as we approach the 90th anniversary of this change, it is time to shift again.

Both employers and employees can experience the benefits of a shorter week.

We all get a better work-life balance. The four-day week can give us time to live happier, more fulfilled lives and allow for those non-work parts of life that often are neglected.

For example, spending time with friends and family, on fitness pursuits or time in nature.

Then, of course, there’s always that life admin that we all have to deal with, like; shopping, cleaning, sorting out the bank, along with the many parenting duties we can experience.

As an employer looks out for higher performance and profits, trials have demonstrated that a shorter working week can increase productivity. A Henley Business School study pre the pandemic found that 250 firms participating in a four-day week saved an estimated £92 billion a year because their employees were happier, less stressed, and took fewer sick days.

Our economy could benefit too, which is undoubtedly needed. Incredibly, the U.K. suffers simultaneously from overwork, unemployment, and underemployment. A four-day week could be an intuitively simple way to rebalance the economy and address many problems.

Productivity is a concern for many. Google how to improve productivity as a critical business driver, and you will find multiple research papers that reveal that working less could be the answer to achieving more.

The Four Day Working Week and Law Firms

We are currently in the grip of a skills shortage in many sectors, especially when it comes to finding legal talent.

We are receiving more role instructions than ever at Clayton legal, and many firms we work with are reviewing their EVP to make their role offer irresistible. If you want to attract dynamic lawyers, could a four-day week work?

A recent post in The Times also suggested that firms keen to embrace flexible working might even be persuaded to abandon the billable hour.

In a post on Legalfutures, the CEO of one law firm in Kent revealed that his 22 strong team had started working a four-day week at the end of 2020, except two customer service staff who worked Friday and took Monday off.

His underlying premise of the four-day week was that productivity gains could be found by reducing or eliminating unproductive time in the traditional five-day week.

He gave as examples “unproductive meetings”, meetings with “too many people who did not need to be there”, unnecessary social conversations or staff spending time sending personal messages or on social media.

All logical observations considering a U.K. study in 2018 had found that up to 40% of workers’ time in a traditional working week was unproductive.

Admittedly moving to a trial of a four-day week would also mean additional work for your firm, at least initially, as you outline the process, including delivering billable hours, customer service and other vital business drivers.

However, it is clear that the world of work is changing for all professional service sectors, including law. The pandemic has undoubtedly accelerated changes into where individuals work – is it time to review how, when and how often?

About Clayton Legal

Clayton Legal has been partnering with law firms across the country since 1999 and has built up an enviable reputation for trust and reliability during that time. We have made over 5,000 placements from Partners to Legal Executives, Solicitors to Paralegals and Legal I.T. personnel to Practice Managers.

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Posted By

Laura Lissett

Marketing Consultant

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Why partnering with a legal recruitment specialist could make 2019 your best year

  • December 13, 2018

As we head towards the end of the year and get ready to welcome a new one, it’s an ideal opportunity to reflect. That’s why we’ve put together this blog, to help you assess what difficulties the legal sector has faced this year, and how to plan so that 2019 gets off to a successful start.

Challenges and opportunities in 2018

Earlier this year we published research into the legal sector’s biggest challenges and opportunities in 2018. One of the main things that emerged was firms’ fears about how skills shortages might impact on growth. Conveyancing, both residential and commercial, was highlighted as a particular area of concern, as property specialists come under increasing pressure. There’s certainly no shortage of work for those that do specialise in property, and changes to the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality scheme may add to conveyancing professionals’ list of things to do.

The other major challenge highlighted in our white paper, was the political landscape – no, we’re not quite on to the ‘B’ word yet! At the start of 2018 firms were facing uncertainty over what would happen regarding the so-called ‘whiplash reforms’. Thankfully, as we approach the end of the year there’s much greater clarity, with the reforms having been pushed back to April 2020. We reported back in October that we’d already seen a sharp increase in the number of personal injury vacancies emerging, which offers greater job security for those who specialise in that field, at least for the next year or so.

What’s happening across the market: plan now, succeed later

The good news on whiplash reforms isn’t the only piece of positivity that 2018 has delivered. While the legal sector, and many other professions, have found Brexit to be a challenge, firms have also reported that it represents an opportunity.

The changing relationship with Europe could actually mean that those who specialise in litigation may find themselves in demand, as businesses and individuals require advice. The best thing to do is to plan for all eventualities. Faced with uncertainty and skills shortages, firms’ best bet is to work hard to retain staff now. In fact, research carried out by CIPD shows that 26% of organisations are placing a greater emphasis on developing existing staff. Our blog, ‘Save Time, Money And Resources: Retain Your Best Legal Talent’, has tips on how best to achieve that.

Changes have meant that some situations have become clearer, for example the whiplash reforms. And while some things remain a little foggy – Brexit being a prime example – planning and retention strategies can help secure your success in 2019 and beyond.

Partnering with Clayton

Equipping clients with what they need to achieve their objectives now and in the future is what we aim to do, after all, we’re only as successful as our clients. In order to help you achieve your goals, we use two vital elements:

  • Each client has a dedicated legal recruitment consultant
  • We build strong, trusting relationships with clients by always taking the time to listen to your needs and challenges. Candidate relationships are key also and we have built up a large database of quality candidates

By focusing on your success, we have reinforced our own values of trust, relationships, and growth. These values are what clients appreciate, and we often share the same values as the firms that we serve, making for a stronger partnership.

We take building positive client relationships seriously, and also strive to build strong relationships with our employees too. So if you’re the kind of firm that is committed to building an employer brand that not only attracts but retains talent, then we could be a good match!

In fact, a prominent law firm was recently struggling to source quality candidates with the right skill set for the role. By upholding the two key elements above we were quickly able to fill the post. Not only did this reduce the demand on the client’s time, it allowed them to focus on their day job, which was much more beneficial for business. The client was delighted with the outcome and commented that “Clayton Legal understand what we want and deliver by taking the process away that leads us to being able to concentrate on the business.”

Of course, each client measures success differently, although 91% of clients have reported being really pleased with Clayton and the results of working with us.

Talent can be the scarcest resource, which is why our goal is to use our market expertise, insight and networks to ensure that we provide the right people to the right firms, so that they become their greatest asset.

Clayton Legal’s success stories

We’re delighted to hear such positive feedback and are proud to say that we have filled over 3,000 placements in our lifetime. We have worked alongside firms to recruit positions ranging from:

  • Partners to Legal Executives
  • Solicitors to Paralegals
  • Legal IT personnel to Practice Managers

Our ongoing dedication to and passion for legal recruitment means that we’re continually refining our knowledge of the market and improving the service we offer to clients.

As part of our continual desire to improve, we have achieved the following successes this year:

  • 2018 has seen our fifth continuous year of growth, which is testament to our MD Lynn, the work of the whole team, and the fantastic clients that we serve.
  • It’s not just in a financial sense that we’ve grown. From our base in the North West, we’ve expanded across the UK and are proud to be supporting clients as far afield as London, Birmingham, Leeds, Bristol, as well as the South East.
  • This year we’ve also introduced a service providing locum professionals across the legal landscape. We understand that sometimes your firm needs a helping hand without taking on the financial responsibility of an entirely new member of staff; a locum worker is a great alternative.

Looking forward to 2019

While we’ve celebrated some of our own successes here, it’s been a good time for the legal profession as a whole, despite various obstacles. Indeed, at the end of November the number of solicitors on the roll was 192,516, up on last year and at the highest point in 2018. The sector is proving to be healthy, regardless of its challenges.

This is reflected in our 2018 Salary Survey which highlights that, despite ongoing skills shortages in areas like conveyancing,  firms have felt more positive about the availability of legal skills in general. And while there have been plenty of challenges in 2018, they have been balanced with opportunities. We’re certainly looking forward to 2019 and continuing to support law firms with their needs.

And if you’re thinking of recruiting, it’s not too late to get things underway before Christmas. We’ll be here until the 24th of December and will be more than happy to help with whatever recruitment challenge you’re facing.

Whether it’s a last-minute locum emergency or a full-time employee for 2019 expansion plans, call us on 01772 259 121 and one of our talented consultants will be able to assist you.

In the meantime, you might like to find out more about what a specialist firm can bring to the table in our blog: Big firm, little firm…get the best from your recruitment provider.

You may also like to download our latest report on trends in law: The 7 critical recruitment trends in law that will impact your talent pipeline in 2019.

Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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More than money: the true cost of legal sector recruitment

  • November 8, 2018

A stable workforce means that your law firm runs smoothly and without interruption, so when a staff member leaves it can have a big impact on the rest of the firm. Valuable skills and job-specific knowledge that have built up over time disappear with a departing staff member, leaving you in a tricky position to bridge the gap. These practical implications of recruitment can have just as heavy a cost to your firm as the financial element.

That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help explain what the true cost of recruiting is to your firm. From finances to how attrition rates impact your recruitment, we’ve considered some of the things you may not have thought about when it comes to your recruitment costs.

Recruitment costs: facts and figures

To understand the true cost of recruiting, it’s useful to look at the facts and figures and what costs they refer to. When a staff member leaves, your firm could find itself paying for everything from agency fees to the wages of temporary and locum staff.

Research carried out by Oxford Economics suggests that it costs more than £30,000 to replace a staff member, with the legal profession bearing the highest costs at £39,887 per employee. Two main reasons for this cost are highlighted in the findings:

  • Firstly, the logistics of recruiting a new staff member and the associated costs that go along with that. For example, HR activity and the cost to the firm of the interview process.
  • Secondly, the reduction in productivity while the new staff member gets up to speed. According to the report, the average legal professional takes 32 weeks to reach optimum efficiency, which makes it one of the longest periods of reduced productivity. This makes the legal sector the most costly industry in which to replace a lost staff member.

The financial figures are striking of course, although it’s important not to overlook the bigger picture. Not only does a departing staff member result in a monetary cost to the business there is a range of knock-on effects:

  • HR spends considerable time going through leaving and joining processes, completing all the relevant paperwork as well as sourcing a replacement.
  • Management has to spend time arranging for the work to be covered, either by distributing it amongst existing staff or appointing temporary cover. There’s also the time spent away from everyday work conducting interviews to account for.
  • The workload of colleagues increases and there is a general reduction in productivity as staff take time to readjust and the new person to settle in.

Not only is this expensive, it’s time-consuming: resources which could be used to retain staff are instead spent on finding a replacement. There’s the commercial element to consider also, as time and energy are put into recruitment which could be put to more effective use by serving clients.

Attrition rates and their impact on recruitment costs

Losing a well-established member of staff is undoubtedly a blow to your firm, although it’s equally important to consider how attrition rates play into your overall recruitment costs. If you find that you hire someone only for them to leave after a short while, or if staff aren’t sticking with you for the long term, it can greatly influence the cost of recruitment to your firm. What’s more, if staff churn is causing disruption, then it’s unlikely that the workforce at large is working at optimum productivity.

There’s a mixed picture on attrition rates across the board. PwC’s Annual Law Firms’ Survey 2018 shows a difference between the top 25 law firms and the firms in the rest of the top 50. The number of newly qualified solicitors in the top 25 firms has decreased, as did those with up to two years’ PQE. While PwC suggests that this is due to ‘underutilisation’ of legal professionals at this level, it does perhaps show that the top firms pose a problem to the rest of the sector in their ability to attract the kind of experienced, talented individuals that smaller firms would want to retain.

However, the NQ headcount was up by 33% amongst firms in the top 26-50. In our own research, firms felt more positive about attrition rates in 2018 which suggests that law firms are getting better at retaining staff, at the Newly Qualified level at least. Indeed, the PwC findings back this up suggesting there has been a greater desire to ‘nurture’ talent.

Showing staff that you are invested in their development is one of the most effective ways to retain them. Legal professionals that can see a future with your firm are less likely to leave and this reduces your costs associated with recruitment.

It’s important to point out, however, that attrition hasn’t disappeared entirely. Numerous respondents to our Salary Survey did say that high salaries offered by bigger firms can be problematic. This means firms either need to try and compete financially – for example, paying city-like salaries to tempt candidates to a rural location – which is a costly move. Or, they could try alternative tactics such as offering flexible working and a better work-life balance than the big firms can.

Why law firms benefit from using a recruitment agency

Knowing what will attract candidates, what will drive them away, and what will help to keep employees is invaluable. And especially when it comes to attracting candidates in the legal field, having a specialist recruitment agency on your side can make a big difference. As the Oxford Economics report suggests, the legal sector is more likely to use a specialist recruitment agency because of the need for quality over quantity; specific skills and knowledge are needed, therefore an agent that understands the sector is beneficial.

A legal recruitment agency will not only be familiar with all the quirks of the legal profession, they will be able to think outside of the box and help you to consider candidates that you might not otherwise have done, giving you more choice. Of course, using a recruitment agency rather than recruiting in-house incurs a cost. However, by making use of a partner with specialist skills, your staff are free to do what they do best, meaning that you save time and money in the long term. Placing the right candidate with your firm will also reduce attrition rates, meaning you spend less on recruitment than you would do if attrition rates remained high.

If recruiting, or even retaining staff, is something that your firm has been struggling with why not give us a call on 01772 259 121? We’ve over twenty years’ experience in the legal recruitment field and would be pleased to help.

You may also find out recent blog ‘Save time, money and resources: retain your best legal talent’, of interest if you’re looking for some new ideas on how to retain your staff.

And please feel free to register your vacancy online, if you’re looking to recruit at the moment.

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