With the continued growth of internal recruiters with law firms and corporations, is there still a need for an outside recruiting firm? Yes. Hiring through a search firm devoted to law firms and corporate legal departments is generally a great way to avoid harming any relationships you have with businesses you liaise with or causing friction with any competitors. Hiring people from the same talent pool becomes much simpler when working through an impartial third party.
A legal search firm brings expertise, confidentiality, and provides the luxury of only interviewing the best of the best. Let us expound on some of these ideas.
These candidates may have transferrable skills that aren’t apparent on a resume or LinkedIn profile. Or after interviewing them, we know they are only looking for X and your law firm is an X. Maybe they have been out of the job market for a while or transitioning from another industry.
Someone in a non-legal role handling commercial real estate leases or procurement more than likely has strong contracts drafting and negotiating skills. Or a law firm administrator accustomed to managing all aspects of the business side of a law firm – we have seen these professionals’ transition to a compliance role with a corporation.
Supplement Internal Efforts
When your law firm or company hires a recruiting company, that doesn’t mean the internal human resources, sourcing team and other recruiters can take a break. Part of the value a legal search firm will bring to your organization is providing candidates that might not reply to an email or voice mail message from someone they don’t know. Nor would they reply to a job posting.
It could be the confidential nature of their job search they’re concerned about or simply they have established a relationship with a headhunter who knows what they’re looking for in their next career move.
Job Seekers Flying Under the Radar
As discussed above, many candidates in Momentum’s proprietary database are associates, partners and other professionals gainfully employed with a law firm or in-house legal department. Confidentiality is incredibly important to these candidates. They contact a company like Momentum Search Partners to partner with them, keep them apprised of potential jobs that match their wish list.
Knowing that Momentum recruiters all came from big law firms, we can do more than walk the walk. We have also litigated big cases or worked on a corporate merger or probated a Will. This combination offers peace or mind to many of those candidates that want someone that can advocate for them and truly understand and able to articulate their work experience to a potential employer.
Experienced recruiters with a legal search firm like Momentum should be plugged in to their markets. They will often know about a firm splitting or a practice group forming a new firm. This can lead to some previously unavailable or uninterested candidates becoming available and interested in hearing about new opportunities.
Some want to be pro-active ahead of a potential lay-off and others may not be interested in joining the newly created firm. Often this intel comes for a lawyer contacting one of the Momentum recruiters to confidentially discuss making a move.
Public Relations and Reputation Management
Sometimes law firms or corporate legal departments get a reputation for being a tough place to work. Maybe an unexpected string of people leaving, rumors of poor workplace moral or others. This information can be obtained in several ways, including sites such as Glassdoor or Indeed. Often, it’s more difficult for an internal recruiter to toot the company’s horn.
However, an outside recruiter is able to investigate the information separately and be removed from the company, giving potential candidates some insight into the situation. Maybe there’s a new manager that is ruffling feathers or bonuses weren’t what was promised. Whatever the problem, an outside headhunter can address the subject directly and provide answers to someone considering that law firm or company.
Internal Recruiters with Corporations often have no Legal Experience
Big companies with internal recruiters are often responsible for sourcing and hiring sales, marketing, software engineers or administrative staff. Not lawyers, paralegals, and other legal professionals. The hiring in the legal department may be a small part of their responsibility.
At Momentum, we have worked with numerous corporate recruiters that have never worked on a legal search and have been asked to hire a corporate counsel, patent paralegal or employment law attorney. This is where we can offer immense value with our legal expertise and market knowledge.
Recruiting Firms are an unnecessary expense
An objection often heard is a search firm is too expensive. On the contrary, using an experienced headhunter will ultimately save time and money. A company like Momentum can add value by immediately targeting a handful of on-point and vetted legal professionals. Some of them we have been in touch with for months waiting on a particular opportunity with a law firm or corporation. We can often have resumes to a hiring manager or managing partner within a few days.
On the flip side, a firm or company will post the job internally, possibly on their website and job boards. Then begins the laborious task of filtering through often hundreds of resumes to find qualified ones to contact. Phone screen, video interview, references, in-person meetings, etc. One call to Momentum and problem solved.