Employer insights

A Law Firm's Quick Solution to a Candidate Short Market!


by Mary Savova

about 2 years ago


As any HR professional or Principal of a law firm would know, the Legal Secretary/Legal Assistant market in Melbourne is tighter than ever, which has made it more difficult than ever to source and retain top talent. This candidate short market, in turn, leaves  job seekers in the legal support market ‘very tight lipped’ about the (often) multiple job offers they have received.   Due to the very thorough and mostly ‘traditional’ recruitment processes within law firms, holding out for the ‘perfect fit’, they are very often left with a huge backlog of administration work in the interim. This can be frustrating for all. Whilst it remains important to source talent and the right cultural fit, a more immediate solution needs to be found to enable these very busy legal firms to continue their searches for permanent legal staff.

Australia is home to thousands of legal support professionals who are on Working Holiday Visas from many different countries. We work exclusively with legal support professionals who have travelled from Europe, US and Canada, amongst others. In most instances, these candidates have a wealth of knowledge and expertise in many different areas of law within some of the world’s most prestigious law firms. Now I know what you might be thinking… "legal processes here are different", "the court systems aren't the same" or "they don’t know our billing system". Whilst this may have some truth and won’t be practical on a long term and permanent basis; the drive and worth ethic that these candidates have is first class. From my personal experience with working with a legal secretary, legal assistant or paralegal on a working holiday visa, is that they been able to translate their experience and skill set quickly and hit the ground running.

Time and time again, I have outstanding feedback from boutique, mid-tier and top tier law firms that these candidates have been impressive and have really assisted the practice in getting on top of their backlog or overflow. Even though this is a short term fix, it can also benefit firms in the long term by ensuring we spend considerable time in sourcing and securing the right candidate. If you are looking for a Legal Assistant, Legal Secretary or Paralegal on a temp or contract basis, or are a legal support professional looking for temporary/ contract work, please don’t hesitate in giving me a call on +613 9098 7427.

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