Finding top quality legal support staff can be difficult for even the biggest firms, but that's not to say that there is a lack of talent in the pool.
Despite there being a wealth of support staff currently seeking jobs, you must be able to offer more than just a cheque every few weeks. This can seem difficult if you're just starting out, but there are a lot of things you can do that require minimal amounts of time and money.
Ensure your wages are competitive
Of course, there is more to a job than just making money, but you need to ensure that your support staff will be getting paid what they are worth. This is not to say that you can ignore all the other factors so long as you are paying a high rate. We're also not saying that you absolutely have to pay more than every other firm out there, that's not possible if you're just starting out. However, you will have to make sure your wage offerings are competitive with similar firms in your area.
Involve your team in recruiting
It's important to remember that you aren't the only one working with new employees, in fact you may not even be the one who is working closest with them. Factoring in the opinions of your team members on new hires can not only help you get the best possible hire, but will also make your employees feel valued and make them more loyal to you and your practice.
Implement a mentoring programme
If you want to see your support staff thrive, you absolutely should consider a strong mentoring programme. Even if you are the only lawyer in your practice, by meeting with staff on a regular basis and help guide them in making wise career choices, you can help them upskill and become more valuable team members. This gives the support staff a leg up and helps them feel that they are a valued and important part of the team. What's more, it will give your support staff a way to provide you with feedback on son how things are being run and ways you can potentially improve.
Make your culture employee focused
Work-life balance has been in the spotlight since March last year when working from home became a norm. If you want to attract top support staff to your practice you have to take this into account. How can you help enrich your employee's lives? Not just through paying them more, but by showing that you are listening to them and making them feel valued. Maybe you can offer flexible working conditions so they can spend more time with their families.
Interestingly, studies have shown that employee satisfaction derives a strong boost from an employee's perception that they are cared about. This may be one of the most affordable things you can do for your support staff: let them know that you care, and that they are being heard.
Give your staff the tools they need to succeed
One item that tends to increase staff unhappiness, which in turn leads to higher turnover rates, is the tools provided to the team. Staff who have to do their job without having the proper tools will be unhappy and will likely leave the firm for better employment conditions elsewhere.
One excellent option is legal software. mattero gives your staff the simplest way to efficiently perform their jobs.
mattero can help you to centralise your work so that everything your staff need is accessible from the web-based platform, anywhere, any time on any device. Depending on the specifics of your practice, it may even be possible to move support staff to a completely paperless work space. An added advantage of this is that it is accessible outside of the office to allow employees to access their work from wherever they need to, allowing you to provide your staff with flexible working conditions they may be asking for.
Having the right legal support staff can make a huge difference in the success of your law firm. As such, you must take steps to attract the best employees you can, and retain them once you have them. By being proactive, you can help to ensure the success and profitability of your firm.