Articles From the Team
Is it time to quit your in-house legal job?
In-house lawyers move legal jobs for lots of different reasons; some remain in their job situation longer than they should, and others are guilty of leaving too early into a role.
Here are some of the top reasons why lawyers look to move on.
Outgrowing a role
Outgrowing a role is one of the more positive reasons to move on. Unless the company’s grown exponentially or the team’s grown/more senior lawyers have moved on, there comes a point where it’s ‘just time to move on’.
What about the more ‘negative’ reasons?
‘Legal isn’t held in high esteem’
Unless you or someone else can improve the impact/importance of the legal team, it’s highly likely that the legal team will get despondent and decide to move on.
The company is sinking
Working for a company that’s not doing well can be a tough place to be. Morale’s down across the business and this has a negative effect on your daily working life. Sometimes, a lawyer can become entirely fed up of being in this atmosphere – not to mention the lack of financial bonus you might be missing out on by not working with a business ‘on the up’.
Your commute is long
Travel, whether by train or car, is becoming longer and more arduous. We’re finding that lawyers will leave if the right work/life balance isn’t achievable.
Your duties have increased but your pay remains the same
Whenever a lawyer comes to me stating this as a problem, I always ask them to elaborate on timeline: from when they felt paid appropriately to when this fell below their expectations.
The reason being, when the duties first increase, I see this as a benefit to ‘you’ as you’re the one gaining the new skills and experience; in the long run, this is making you more marketable when it comes to your career.
Ask too early and you might be viewed as a money grabber; however, there comes a point when a company should increase salaries at their own volition.
Nothing’s more upsetting to hear than a once motivated and hard working lawyer feeling like they’re being taken for granted, based on having a below-market salary for the role they’re completing.
Other reasons include a lack of belief in the values of a company, not liking where the company is moving (both location and business-wise), and not liking fellow employees. The list goes on.
As a recruiter, we’re keen to see that as a professional, you don’t jump without:
- Valid reason; or,
- Giving your situation enough of a go. As long as the next recruiting client understands your situation, why it’s been a problem and what you’ve done about it, they’re usually open to discussing this with you directly.