find the latest legal job
Partners and Senior Specialist Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Australia
· Earn 70% of billings and fixed referral incentives · Full practice flexibility & freedom
View details
Partners and Senior Specialist Lawyers
Category: Corporate and Commercial Law | Location: All Australia
· Earn 70% of billings and fixed referral incentives · Full practice flexibility & freedom
View details
Litigation Associate / Senior Associate
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Sydney NSW 2000
· 4 years + PQE · Varied work
View details
Commercial Litigation Lawyer
Category: Litigation and Dispute Resolution | Location: Brisbane CBD & Inner Suburbs Brisbane QLD
· 3 - 7 years PAE with very strong technical skills · Technical and personal development
View details
Senior Lawyer
Category: Industrial Relations and Employment Law | Location: Haymarket NSW 2000
· Play an integral part in launching Employsure's law firm
View details
Frequent feedback key to staff retention

Frequent feedback key to staff retention

Feedback and recognition for a job well done outside of a formal review should be an ongoing part of an employers’ retention plan and process, according to leading legal recruiters.

“This in turn can lead to improved morale and productivity,” said senior regional director of Hays Legal Darren Buchanan when speaking to Lawyers Weekly after the publication of the Hays Quarterly Report on Tuesday (August 7).

“Employees are interested in career progression, as well as being part of something bigger. It is the ground-level manager’s role to work with staff, build their internal relationships and make staff feel they are a valued part of the business’ bigger picture,” he said.

The Hays Quarterly Report indicates employers are leaning towards offering career development to their staff and promoting internally, as well as offering flexibility to top candidates through working from home arrangements, free parking and bonus incentives.

“While many employers have very strict requirements in terms of skills and experience, others are looking at new hires with long-term potential and will consider less-experienced candidates who they can develop into a role,” said Buchanan.

“The main reason is that they believe this gives the candidate a greater incentive to remain long-term with the organisation. For the same reason, many employers will also invest in new graduates and develop their experience.”

According to Sharyl Walsh (pictured), director of Allied Recruitment Solutions, more effort needs to go into cultivating new and less-experienced hires.

Simply offering flexibility and incentives at the interview process is not enough, she said.

“One of the major complaints I hear from lawyers of all levels is the lack of feedback regarding their performance, and although many firms do annual performance reviews the occasional pat on the back  or ‘you have done a great job’ wouldn’t go astray,” said Walsh.

“Lawyers are very quick to criticise but very slow to praise, and if there was more recognition more frequently productivity would flow more readily.”

Being part of an active and progressive team is desirable across all professions, but in law firms, Walsh said, working with a partner who cares and takes an active interest in all members of the team is what most lawyers want.

“Being part of the action and getting recognition for the input of each team member is vital and not just the partner taking the kudos,” she said.

Some employers still believe salary is an overall umbrella fix for retention and staff satisfaction but Buchanan said a one-size-fits-all approach to retention will not work for all employees.

A number of firms are implementing 90-day (or quarterly) performance development plans, which seems to be achieving improved moral and motivation with employees striving to promotion. In addition, recognition of employee contribution doesn’t have to involve expensive reward programs. A simple thank you for a job well done from a manager can be enough to make staff feel valued and proud of what they do and where they work. But make sure it is a genuine, honest gesture by management for the recognition to be effective.”

Hays did not survey firms to gather information for this quarterly report. Rather it used internal sources, including insights from the heads of specialist legal recruiting.

Like this story? Read more:

Book commemorates diamond milestone for WA law society

QLS condemns actions of disgraced lawyer as ‘stain on the profession’

NSW proposes big justice reforms to target risk of reoffending

Frequent feedback key to staff retention
lawyersweekly logo
Promoted content
Recommended by Spike Native Network
more from lawyers weekly
new role with SA judicial appointment, scales of justice
Jan 15 2018
Worker's comp expert takes on new role with SA judicial appointment
An Adelaide barrister has been appointed deputy president of the South Australian Employment Tribuna...
Scales of Justice, NSW Bar Association
Jan 16 2018
New case management approach won’t beat backlog: NSW Bar Association
The New South Wales Bar Association says a new case management approach will fail to make a signific...
Jan 12 2018
E-discovery predictions for 2018
Promoted by Law In Order The outlook for early adopters of e-discovery in legal looks bright in 2...
APPOINTMENTS
Allens managing partner Richard Spurio, image courtesy Allens' website
Jun 21 2017
Promo season at Allens
A group of lawyers at Allens have received promotions across its PNG and Australian offices. ...
May 11 2017
Partner exits for in-house role
A Victorian lawyer has left the partnership of a national firm to start a new gig with state governm...
Esteban Gomez
May 11 2017
National firm recruits ‘major asset’
A national law firm has announced it has appointed a new corporate partner who brings over 15 years'...
opinion
Nicole Rich
May 16 2017
Access to justice for young transgender Australians
Reform is looming for the process that young transgender Australians and their families must current...
Geoff Roberson
May 11 2017
The lighter side of the law: when law and comedy collide
On the face of it, there doesn’t seem to be much that is amusing about the law, writes Geoff Rober...
Help
May 10 2017
Advocate’s immunity – without fear or without favour but not both
On 29 March 2017, the High Court handed down its decision in David Kendirjian v Eugene Lepore & ...