The truth about what firms are paying their support staff
New research has offered insight into what private practice firms pay their support staff, from legal receptionists and paralegals to payroll officers and HR directors.
Gatehouse Legal Recruitment has just released its 2018–2019 Private Practice/Australia Salary Guide, utilising a compilation of salary and market information to determine remuneration of those who work in the business of law, including superannuation but not bonuses or other benefits.
The company’s guide highlighted a considerable difference between the lawyers starting off their careers in a top-tier firm versus those at a boutique, but also offered further detail into what legal support/business services people tend to receive as a salary while working at a law firm.
Kicking off in legal and office support, the guide showed legal receptionists earn between $45,000–$60,000, while legal secretaries with over four years’ experience earn between $70,000–$80,000.
Paralegals earn between $65,000–$90,000 and senior conveyancers earn between $70,000–$90,000, according to the guide.
In the office support category, the guide noted that mailroom clerks earn between $40,000–$50,000, administration assistants earn between $45,000–$60,000, and float legal secretaries earn between $65,000–$75,000.
In the accountancy and finance space, payroll officers earn between $50,000–$65,000, while supervisors/accounts managers earn between $65,000–$100,000 and bookkeepers earn between $50,000–$75,000. Meanwhile finance directors/CFOs earn above anywhere between $115,000–$250,000 while accountants earn between $80,000–$100,000, the guide noted.
Lastly, the guide detailed the earnings of those in the practice management/human resources side of the business of law.
Practice managers earn between $85,000–$120,000, while legal HR assistants earn between $50,000–$65,000 and legal HR advisers earn between $70,000–$95,000.
Legal HR managers at firms with less than 250 employees earn between $80,000–$130,000, while those with between 250 and 1,000 employees earn between $100,000–$160,000 and those with over 1000 staff earn between $100,000–$200,000.
Meanwhile, legal HR directors at firms with less than 250 employees earn between $120,000–$200,000, while those with between 250 and 1,000 employees earn between $150,000–$250,000 and those with over 1,000 employees earn between $150,000–$350,000.