Senior Associate – Global Law Firm
We are all guilty of hyperbole in the current market: nobody has seen activity to this extent; firms are more flexible than ever in their approaches to recruitment; opportunities like these may never come again. However, having taken time to reflect over the past few weeks it seems the hyperbole has been justified.
Many of our clients have improved their processes to ensure they don’t miss the opportunity to hire top talent and have positioned themselves as an employer of choice for candidates. We’ve seen firms move from receiving a CV to making an offer in under a week. All of this is great, and speed of process certainly helps to, but what happens after they’ve signed on the dotted line?
Nearly every candidate we’ve had an offer for in the past 6 months has been asked to reconsider, and promised better pay, work, or both to make them stay. This happens at the time of resignation and can continue for some time during notice periods.
Furthermore, with demand for lawyers showing no signs of slowdown AND salaries continuing to rise, candidates will continue to receive calls and messages from head-hunters throughout their notice period.
It’s therefore vital that once someone has decided to join you that the onboarding process starts immediately. Initially this is ensuring that paperwork is sent promptly, and conflicts and references are conducted with minimal fuss.
From then until they join it is about building a relationship with the candidate, so they feel part of the team before they even join. There are several things that can be done to help this:
- Be personal – embrace the person, not just the lawyer! Having your new partner check in to ask how the resignation went can be extremely powerful and re-enforce the reasons they are joining at a time when they might be feeling most vulnerable.
- Schedule regular check-ins during the notice period to update them on developments in the team and the firm.
- Invite then to social events so they can meet their new colleagues in a more relaxed environment
- Introduce then to their new mentors so that can begin to build a working relationship before they start.
Not only will these steps ensure your new hire feels confident in the competency of the onboarding process, but it will also show them how excited you are that they will be joining you, making them feel valued throughout their notice period and ensure they hit the ground running when they start.