Construction and property lawyers being sought in-house
Hotspots of skills in demand are emerging, with relevant industry experience needed in the corporate counsel sphere, according to new findings from a global professional recruitment group.
The 2018–19 Hays Salary Guide has shown that construction and property lawyers are needed in-house, as part of a broader increase in demand for legal counsel with relevant industry experience.
“For example, a mining organisation will request a lawyer who has worked on mining accounts previously,” Hays stated.
These hotspots of skills are popping up across industries, the guide revealed: “Demand will be high in-house for construction and property lawyers with at least three years PQE [post-qualification experience] in response to the flourishing infrastructure, residential and commercial markets.”
“Both front-end and back-end experience is sought; front-end lawyers are needed to provide contract advice while back-end lawyers are required to handle disputes that arise during or in the aftermath of a project,” Hays said.
Residential and commercial conveyancers and commercial litigation lawyers are similarly in high demand, with candidates showing “general commercial skills” for relevant industry projects becoming priorities for the in-house space.
“Lawyers with commercial contract experience remain highly sought after to negotiate, draft and review a wide variety of commercial agreements in relation to sales and services provided by or to a business.”
The news follows early reporting from Lawyers Weekly that while more in-house lawyers will receive pay rises in their next employment reviews, traditional law firms will be more generous in terms of dollars.
Two-thirds (65 per cent) of employers will give corporate counsel a pay rise of less than three per cent in their next review, and 11 per cent will not increase salaries at all. A further 18 per cent will give staff an increase between three and six per cent, and just six per cent will receive a raise of six per cent or more.