Lawyers are more faithful to their roles compared to 2014 

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Millennials, however, are likely to look for a new role within six months of first job

Law firms might have to ‘turn on the charm’ in year three of their employee’s career, a new report has revealed, as lawyers hit the ‘three-year itch’.

The 2015 Salary and Benefits Benchmarker report by legal recruiters Douglas Scott found that the average time spent by a lawyer in a role is three years and four months, after which legal professionals are most likely to consider a career move.

This marks a six-month rise since 2014, when lawyers were likely to change jobs within two years and eight months.

Furthermore, the survey also revealed that 31 per cent of lawyers in their first year of employment are likely to switch roles within six months. These findings support the notion that the millennial generation has a different attitude to firm loyalty compared to their predecessors, and therefore different career aspirations.

Paula McMullan, learning and development (L&D) consultant and author of Trainee Recruitment and Management: A Definitive Law Firm Guide shared her insight on the matter.

‘Millennials favour a sense of belonging to a team, flexible working and opportunities for learning and personal development, including immediate feedback and recognition’, said McMullan in ‘Tomorrow’s talent: Win the loyalty of millennial lawyers to your firm’.

‘While firms are keen to place lawyers with clients to build relationships and give trainees exposure to clients’ worlds, trainees are busy working out where their careers may go in a few years’ time. It is therefore vital to recognise the changing face of lawyers entering the profession and in their first few years of practice’, she added.

Douglas Scott director Jonathan Nolan also pointed out that although lawyers appear to be more faithful to their current roles, firms need to be alert and treat each one of them accordingly.

‘It is interesting that lawyers are staying in their roles longer but in reality what we are experiencing are shifting talent pools that expand and contract with age and experience. Whilst legal professionals will be looking for the right balance of support and challenge in a working environment hirers may encounter difficulties if they take a one size fits all approach’, said Nolan.

Source: Solicitors Journal – Lawyers are more faithful to their roles compared to 2014

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