Long gone are the days of a rigid 9-5 with a trend for flexible working taking a grip within a growing number of law firms. Being a lawyer inherently demands long hours, but the changing face of technology and the ability to work from anywhere is for some firms changing the long held belief that office-based workers are more efficient. Changing client demands, diverse briefs and varying workloads have seen many law firms embrace flexible working and here’s why it could be worth considering:
Firms have seen the light
Times when you have to ask for flexible hours are now long behind us with a growing number of firms offering a range of options for a better work/life balance. Looking predominantly in the South of England, there has been a big trend for vacancies being advertised with anything from just three days a week to 5 days part time, working from home options and plenty in between. Whatever split you are looking for it is certainly achievable in the current market.
Working smarter not longer
Some business leaders wrongly consider working flexibly to be less productive, but in truth it has the opposite impact. Flexible working offers lawyers greater control over their time and how to allocate it best. Many report that working remotely leads to less office distractions and enhanced focus and efficiency. The opportunity to work on your terms can boost productivity by bringing an improved work/life balance to your week.
Improved client relationships
It is a myth that flexible working means working from home. Remote working allows lawyers to go anywhere and work not just away from the office but on the move. The ability to work from a client’s office can help grow the face-to-face relationship and keep the client assured that they have your support as and when they need, even if that requires time in-house or after hours.
The worry that descends on anyone working remotely is that your senior partner and colleagues may think you are not working when you say you are. Quelling this is not just about sending a few emails early on to show you’re up and working, but by gaining trust and showing the fruits of your labour over the long-term. This can help to build your reputation within your firm rather than diminish it.
The team at Origin Legal produces a range of information to assist legal professionals in both the strategic and technical aspects of making a career move. Check out our resources for more information or contact us on +44 (0)1206 233500 if you would like to discuss flexible working options or any other aspect of your legal career.