Transitioning in-house is fast becoming the goal for many lawyers as salary gaps between private practice and in-house become ever nearer.
But what are the other potential benefits? Robert Walters examines just some of the reasons why you may want to make the move in-house.
Less working hours
One of the most common benefits that lawyers recite when moving in-house is the effect it can have on your work-life balance. Typically, if you are working in-house it is much more likely to find yourself working to standardised hours, reflective of the greater business. Although there are exceptions to the rule from organisation to organisation, most in-house lawyers tend to have much more predictable hours than what you may find in a practice role.
Central focus on one client
For some, working for one client – being your primary employer, provides a host of benefits. This of course can vary person-to-person, however, most that transition from private practice to in-house note being relieved of the marketing activity associated with private practice. Similarly, some also enjoy holding responsibility over one business, rather than managing multiple clients at any one time. Although there are obvious variances to this when you are working within a large or international business, you will also typically find much more flexibility when negotiating deadlines.
One of the key benefits that lawyers find very rewarding is the ability to see the results of their advice and the commercial impact this can have on the business.
When making the move in-house you will often find that the nature of work can change dramatically. This can often be very welcome to lawyers seeking to involve themselves within projects related to the wider business. Often you will find that a strong understanding of the business is just as necessary as your knowledge of the law.
Witness the impact of your work
One of the key benefits that lawyers find very rewarding is the ability to see the results of their advice and the commercial impact this can have on the business. Within the world of private practice it is often the case that communication with the client will cease once the advice is given. In-house, you will see the results whether they are good or bad.
Broader remuneration packages
Although it is common for many lawyers starting in-house to receive salaries under that which some may receive in private practice, it is often that they will receive greater benefit packages as a whole. It is also very common for salaries to fluctuate quite dramatically, dependent upon which industry sector you are working within.
Some lawyers associate their involvement in decision making processes essential to their job satisfaction. Typically, those working in-house make particular reference to the sense of accomplishment associated with decisions ultimately impacting the growth of the business.
Structure work around your life
A billable hours culture is something you will not generally find in-house, which is often a great relief to lawyers having come from private practice. Although lawyers may still be working just as hard, there will not be the same bookkeeping pressures that are associated with a billable practice environment.
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