Published on 13th November 2017
The PWC annual law firm report revealed a lot of interesting observations and statistics from the UK law firms surveyed.
A key comment from PWC partner David Snell revolved around the necessity for law firms to adapt to new technological innovations to aid the recruitment and retention of staff, pulling a conclusion that an increase in staffing costs contributed to an average cost of £6.9 million this year to each of the UK’s top 10 firms.
With the market more candidate short and competitive than ever, could the creation of a more flexible working environment assist legal firms being able to retain and attract talent?
70% of firms offer remote working solutions
The PWC report sprung what seemed to be a surprising statistic; from the responses gathered it indicated that 70% of firms have embarked upon “remote working solutions”.
I agree that law firms have started to develop in this direction over the past 6-12 months but it is still an area that needs some significant improvement.
Or do they?
Throughout the marketing, business development and communications piece it seems to be a rarity that roles are actively promoted/advertised with a degree of flexible working options from the outset.
Many candidates perceive and are concerned that asking for flexibility upon application would impact negatively on their chances of landing the opportunity or even reaching interview stage.
Whilst the report is only a reflection on the participants and quality of data entered, at Ambition we do see a clear reluctance from firms to engage candidates who are looking for more flexibility, which in many cases means they are overlooking experienced talented options that could enhance their business propositions.
Further clarity is needed on what parameters define “remote working solutions” before making assumptions but if 70% are keen to apply more flexibility, law firms on the whole need to really market this flexible approach far better internally and externally and make it more the norm than an exception.
So what can be done?
Make it known! We are currently working with a number of excellent, high calibre candidates who are looking exclusively for part-time, flexible working or agile working arrangements.
Making it clear that you’re open to applicants who work in this way can be a hugely attractive plus for a firm and potentially increase the quality of candidates you have applying to roles particularly at management level and above. It also empowers your workforce to keep asking for flexibility and ultimately means you retain good talent.
To discuss further, please feel free to get in contact with me firstname.lastname@example.org