How do you help lawyers develop their careers, even when they don’t want to move firms?
One of the nicest bits of feedback that I’ve had recently from candidates is that they really appreciate the way that we check in with them. I think that’s something that sets us apart from other agencies that treat recruitment very much as a “sell-a-role” type approach. Whereas the way that we work is, we keep in regular contact with the lawyers that we try to help with the view to building those relationships so that even where they’re not immediately looking to move, because we get to know them so well, when the time is right, we’re in the best possible position to be able to assist them.
There are lots of things that we can help them with in the meantime anyway in terms of helping with salary benchmarking, drafting CVs and business plans and things like that. So, there’s plenty that we can help with even where people aren’t necessarily looking to move.
Tell us about a great result you got for a law firm.
I recently helped a firm secure a partner that they thought they’d lost to another firm a few months prior, and it comes back to the same thing again, about keeping in contact with people and having those good relationships.
Unfortunately, because of the relationship that I had with my client, and the fact that I’d kept in contact with the candidate in question, it became apparent quite quickly that the firm they joined wasn’t the right fit. I was able to have the original offer reinstated with my client, they joined that firm the following week and things are going really well. So that was a successful all-around.
Tell us about your journey into legal recruitment.
I was an associate in a commercial litigation team prior to moving into recruitment. And I’d actually been in the legal profession for about 11 years and doing litigation of various types. I think in hindsight, possibly, litigation wasn’t the right area of law for me and I just felt increasingly like there might be something more suited to me and my personality. I started thinking about different options and legal recruitment came to mind as something that I would have relevant skills for and I just thought it might be a better fit.
Apart from a bit of a false start with the pandemic hitting, I’ve not looked back. I really enjoy working at Realm and I feel like I personally get a lot of job satisfaction from recruitment.
What’s something that’s on your bucket list?
It’s not very specific, but I do love travelling and I love going to new places. Mexico was somewhere that has been on my list for a while and I managed to get there before Christmas, so that was fantastic. I think just continuing down the ever-increasingly long list of places to go, which includes Bali, which is somewhere I’ve always wanted to go to, and I would love to go to the States and travel around a few places there too.
What do you think makes litigation such a fantastic practice area to work in?
I think one of the main reasons that people choose to go into litigation is the diversity. You get exposure to different areas of law and it’s quite collaborative as well. You don’t tend to work on one case on your own. On lots of, especially the higher value, more complex matters, you’ll have a team of lawyers, you’ll have barristers, experts, witnesses so there’s a lot of working together as a team on a case. Building relationships with clients is key as well because a lot of cases will go on for potentially a number of years, so there are all the twists and turns that come with that.
It’s exciting, it’s challenging and definitely keeps you on your toes – I think that’s why it’s a really great practice area for people to consider going into.
What advice would you give to any law firms looking to recruit right now?
I think it’s important for firms to move quickly. I think that’s the key thing. Move quickly with interviews, move quickly with getting offers out. I think where the market is more candidate rich than it perhaps was towards the end of last year, there’s a tendency for firms to want to try and interview as many people as possible before coming back with feedback or making decisions, and the risk is that they’ll lose out on some really good candidates. So yes, don’t delay would be my best advice at the moment.