Law is a practice known for long hours, employees with high stress levels and, of course, a long history of tradition in the office. Law firms are slow to move forward in this fast-paced world, resisting change at every turn. Formal dress codes, “clocking hours” and (dare we say) outdated processes can become the norm in complacent firms.
In this digital age, many companies across a variety of industries have picked up new technology, new methods of working and even automating processes that once took hours of manual labor. If law firms want to stay competitive, they must keep up and adopt to not only the technology aspect, but new culture practices as well.
How can your firm adapt to stay competitive in the talent market?
- Offer flex time. Many firms don’t offer this yet, but lawyers and support staff work too hard to be confined to certain “clock in, clock out” times. When the situation calls for it, for working parents, for doctor visits, for other important factors of life, let an employee work when it works for them. Treating them like they’re doing time instead of helping serve it will take a toll on your staff.
- Offer work from home days. Studies have shown again and again that working from home (with the right technology) is just as productive, if not more, than working in the office. Employees don’t have to worry about a commute, and end up having more time with their clients than they usually would.
- Offer big benefits, even if you’re not a big firm. It’s hard to compete with big firms that have the latest nap rooms and unlimited PTO, but you should still make the effort to give back to all your employees (not just the attorneys!) as much as you can. Extra PTO, flexible hours and work from home do count as benefits, as well as better insurance, bonuses, a 401k match program, lucrative family leave, etc. With high-end perks, you’ll attract top talent to work for you, so it is a win-win situation.
- Adopt the latest tech. There is a lot out there for law firms these days. Don’t get stuck using prehistoric systems and processes that will make your support staff turn into a revolving door. Invest in high-end technology that will automate or ease your processes for better efficiency and ROI, as well as satisfy your staff.
- Enforce the use of your perks. Once you’ve taken the time to lay out these perks and create a better firm for everyone, you must make sure people are taking advantage of it. Too many associates leave vacation time on the table – which leads to burnout and eventually could lead to turnover. Keep your staff healthy by offering incentives for using their perks and benefits, and remove the stigma around time off, flex hours and working from home. You’ll notice the difference in your bottom line.
Need additional insight on top perks of law firms? Contact one of our experts today to get on the right path.