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Hire the Right Person for the Job: Harnessing the Benefits of Good Hiring Practices in Legal Firms

published March 05, 2023

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( 27 votes, average: 4.9 out of 5)
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Recruiting legal professionals can be a challenging task. Finding the right man for the right job is essential for any legal firm. There are certain criteria that need to be considered when selecting the right candidate, such as experience, qualifications, and the right organizational fit.

The experience of a legal professional is one of the primary factors to consider. It is important to evaluate the individual's relevant experience and background when making hiring decisions. An attorney's previous legal experience and expertise are essential in order to choose the best candidate.

Qualifications are also an important factor when determining which legal professional to hire. It is important to consider the education and training that the attorney has received in order to evaluate his or her legal knowledge and skills. It is also important to determine whether the candidate is up to date on the latest developments in the legal field.

Organizational fit of a legal professional is another factor to consider when recruiting. It is important to evaluate whether the candidate will be a good fit with the firm's values, culture, and goals. It is important to determine if the candidate is a team player and whether he or she will be able to work collaboratively with other members of the firm.

When hiring legal professionals, it is important to take into account experience, qualifications, and organizational fit. It is important to ensure that the candidate is the right man for the right job in order for the legal firm to be successful. Recruiting the right man for the right job is key in order to ensure success for the firm. Evaluating criteria such as experience, qualifications, and organizational fit are essential for making the best hiring decisions.

Legal Firms Focusing on the Right Candidate for Every Role

Recently, legal firms have become more conscious about picking the right candidates for the right roles in their businesses. Companies understand that the best way to build a successful legal practice is to ensure that their staff is highly qualified and well-suited for each job. Legal firms are recognizing the benefits of placing a strong emphasis on finding the most qualified candidate to fill each role.

Hiring the Most Qualified Candidates

When scouting for new legal professionals, companies are searching for the most qualified candidates. A legal firm may require a candidate to possess formal legal education and skill sets that can bring immediate value to the organization. Professionals should be capable of managing projects while using the latest technology to meet important deadlines. Furthermore, they need to have the ability to communicate effectively with clients and other members of the legal team.

Performance & Technology

Legal firms are evaluating the performance of the candidates and their ability to use the latest technology to improve their efficiency. Candidates must demonstrate their knowledge and experience in the use of popular legal software applications. Additionally, legal firms are focusing on the candidates' capacity to think critically and analyze complex legal issues in order to provide strong legal advice.

Highly Qualified & Experienced Lawyers

Legal firms are looking for highly qualified professionals who have earned their degrees from accredited institutions. Moreover, legal firms are interested in lawyers who have experience in their respective fields. In the past, firms often hired inexperienced lawyers with the expectation that they would gain experience in due course; however, now they are eager to employ candidates who have a demonstrable track record of success.

Matching the right people with the right jobs is a talent Davenport has been developing since even before her eight-and-a-half-year tenure at Cooley. Prior to working at Cooley, she ran a child-care placement agency, where she listened to what clients were looking for and paired them with providers with the appropriate backgrounds. Thanks to that experience, the transition to career services in a law school was relatively smooth and easy, despite her lack of legal experience. "My opinion," Davenport says, "is I don't know that you must have a law degree to be a career advisor. You have to be able to interview, to sit down with people and talk with them, in order to advise them."

When she began at Cooley, Davenport did a lot of research and reading on the legal profession to supplement her non-legal education (she holds an MPA from Western Michigan University, one of Cooley's partner institutions). It's that same sort of work she expects students to do when they look for a career. "A lot of students don't want to do the research that is required. They think they can walk in and I'll hand them a job." Davenport quickly deflates that myth. "I tell them it's a partnership. We work together. Like in any relationship, there are parts I have to do and parts you have to do."

In counseling students, Davenport works to help them narrow their sights from a big-picture view to a more focused vision of what they would enjoy doing. "Students come in saying, 'I've always wanted to be a lawyer.' I catch them off guard by asking them, 'What does that mean?'" Many students also find themselves in law school by default, not necessarily with a passion for a particular practice of law. "The economy plays a big part in more people coming to law school, wanting a graduate-level degree, and not having as many options." These students require more guidance, Davenport adds. "I ask them to consider what they like doing, what they like about law school, how they see themselves as lawyers."

The joke in her office, Davenport reports, is that all the students want to be international entertainment lawyers. "They tend to want to be where the glamour and the flash are, and make lots of money always, but don't we all?" In reality, many of the Cooley students Davenport advises end up in small or solo practices after graduation. She helps them reach that goal by outlining the smaller interim steps on the path to get there.

One of the most challenging parts of her job, Davenport admits, is the sheer number of students she is responsible for assisting at Cooley, the nation's largest JD law school program. "It's difficult when you have to deal with people more as quantities. You hope they also get the quality when you meet with them." Staffing two offices on the main Lansing campus and offices at each of the satellite branches in Rochester and Grand Rapids, Cooley's resources go largely toward serving walk-ins, making outreach to those who don't use independently choose to use Career Services more difficult. Davenport estimates her offices receive visits from only about 30% of the Cooley student body, but she'd love to see more. "I tell people, 'You pay for us to be here. Use your tuition dollars wisely and come to our office.'"

On the flip side, Davenport truly appreciates the diversity that comes along with such a large student body. "One thing I particularly like about Cooley is the unusually high number of second-career people. Among our students, I've met a neurosurgeon, a bank president, a pilot—a variety of people with diverse interests and career goals, and I really like that." Davenport sometimes has to get a bit more creative in packaging these students as attractive candidates for jobs. "We're talking about people who might have 10 or 15 years of professional expertise. I explain how valuable this can be to a firm, as opposed to someone who's never had that experience. It's all in how you market them."

Davenport also encourages job-hunting students to cast a broad net as to whom they speak regarding their search. "A few years back, I'd been working extensively with one student who was looking to move to a location he'd never planned on," Davenport recounts, "and after all the work we did together, he ended up talking to his neighbor, she gave him a contact, and he got the job. It made my job real easy!" As her story illustrates, there's often an element of surprise to the job search. That's why Davenport urges, "Tell everyone you're looking for a job. Tell people in the grocery store, in the doctor's office - so often it's who you know, and being in the right place at the right time."

A visit to the Career Services office doesn't hurt either. Ultimately, Davenport just wants students to give her office a chance, even if they've had a bad experience with career counseling in the past. "If one advisor doesn't work out, try another." According to Davenport, she and her peers work hard to make their offices everything they can be, developing resources and establishing connections, and she really hopes students take advantage of what's there. "I suppose it would be a great world if we had nothing better to do than build an office - but it's for our students, and we want them to use it.

published March 05, 2023

( 27 votes, average: 4.9 out of 5)
What do you think about this article? Rate it using the stars above and let us know what you think in the comments below.