Many people don’t realize how many different jobs exist within the legal profession. Of course, there is the hardworking team of lawyers in your office, and there are also several other administrative and marketing professionals that all work together to bring the very best out of your firm, every single day.
Effective recruitment for your legal team is not always an easy task. There are so many competitive candidates out there these days, with extensive experience and training. You have the challenge of sifting through hundreds of resumes, sitting through several interviews, and the difficult task of hiring just one individual.
Although every firm varies in the type of law that’s practiced, and legal positions differ in tasks and scope, there are several universal qualities that you must look for in potential candidates as you filter through the interview process. Let’s take a look at what those traits are.
Oral Communication Skills
To communicate well is one of the most fundamental tools of the legal profession. Your candidate must convey information confidently in concise, clear, and logical terms. The right individual is persuasive and able to advocate a position or cause.
There is a unique legal lexicon that isn’t commonly used outside of court or the office. They’ll have to master the terminology to communicate with their teammates effectively. Also, don’t overlook the power of a good listener. Excellent listening skills are crucial to any legal profession.
Exceptional communication isn’t limited to speaking and listening; it also very much includes the skill of writing. Your candidate doesn’t need to be the next Ernest Hemmingway, but they must know how to craft a legal document, email, or meeting agenda with impeccable grammar, syntax, and spelling.
It’s a bonus if a candidate has any prior Communications experience because that means they’ve likely written marketing copy and have a solid understanding of the English language.
Logical and Analytical Reasoning
Legal professionals must review and retain large volumes of complex information efficiently and effectively. Logical and analytical reasoning skills include reading convoluted documents, drawing inferences, and making connections between legal authorities.
The right candidate will demonstrate excellent problem-solving abilities, as well as the capacity to structure and evaluate arguments.
These days, it’s critical for any new employee to have a fundamental — if not advanced — understanding of technology. Legal professionals should master a variety of necessary technology platforms, including word processing, Customer Relationship Management (CRM), presentations, billing, emailing, and web browsing.
If a candidate is familiar with Adobe or other graphic design programs, don’t hesitate to focus on that individual. It’s never a bad idea to have a few extra designers in the office because you never know when you’ll have to whip up something quick to send to a client.
This new hire process is your opportunity to employ a fresh, new face to the firm. It might take more time than you thought, but if you look for these qualities and pay attention to details, the exciting candidate you select is sure to strengthen your team.