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Finding work life balance: work as an interim lawyer

Here I am again, school summer holidays looming and seven weeks of childcare to arrange for my two children. Like a military operation I organise clubs, holidays, grandparents, and beg the occasional favour from friends. I certainly don’t envy my friends who work full-time, as I am fortunate to benefit from working reduced hours, which certainly helps!

Recruitment is very similar to the law, as it is an industry that has up until recently fought against the flexible working model, but finally times are changing and individuals are increasingly looking to find a work life balance tailored to their unique needs. Here at Chadwick Nott, we have seen a shift in attitude from many of the large commercial law firms, who are now offering a much greater degree of home working and flexibility for permanent staff. But has this shift in attitude and law firm policies been enough?

Over the past few years, I have increasingly registered more and more candidates who are seeking interim and locum work. This means that as working parents they can have more control over their work life balance and remove some of the headaches associated with childcare, particularly over the holidays and amidst the World Cup fever. A good example of this is a close friend of mine who now works as an interim during term time only, taking summers off, to manage this exact problem. Despite losing the security and benefits associated with a permanent role, the buoyancy and growth of the interim market has made it a very attractive proposition, allowing candidates to work full-time for short periods of time, work part-time, or work on a consultancy basis. This means that you work when it fits your schedule. This trend has of course been promoted by the likes of Lawyers on Demand, Eversheds Agile and Vario, who provide an interim lawyer offering to many of their in-house clients.

However, the rise in popularity of working on a locum or interim basis is not just confined to candidates with a commercial background or within a top tier firm. Residential Property, Private Client, Family and Personal Injury fee earners are all in great demand, with the number of candidates wishing to explore this way of working rising rapidly. This is obviously good news for firms and organisations, as the pool and diversity of skilled interim workers continues to grow in an ever short candidate market.

So too, it is not just working parents that have benefited from working this way. Our team at Chadwick Nott have placed interim candidates whose motivation for seeking an interim role included caring for elderly parents, managing a separate business venture, spending time abroad, and pursing other interests and work life balance.

If you feel that working as an interim could be a solution for you, your family or your life in general, or if you would like to discuss any interim cover you may need within your current team/firm, please contact myself or one of our national interim team to discuss the best option for you.

Charlotte Williams
charlottewilliams@chadwicknott.co.uk
0121 200 5577

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