Where can you see yourself next?

Hello from the other side

Hello from the other side

In light of the sheer scale of the challenge we’re facing globally I’m certainly not bold enough to try and predict when and how we escape the shadow of Covid19.   I won’t be going anywhere near the shape of our recovery curve or telling you this is a perfect time to reflect on your life goals whilst you craft a resume that prospective employers will be powerless to resist.

However, with the beaches opening, kids returning to school and a chance for some light social interaction at the weekend, it is clear that things are beginning to improve.  If we keep moving in the right direction, there’s a good chance we could all find ourselves back behind our desks in the not too distant future and being back behind our desks will be the first steps to seeing our working lives return to some sort of normal.

With that in mind, I thought it would be interesting to step across to the other side of our current lockdown conditions and discuss, from a recruitment perspective, a few things we might find waiting for us;

Blessed are the litigators; in the 12 months or so leading up to the outbreak of Covid19 we’d never experienced such consistent and high demand for disputes lawyers.  The endless search for the perfect ECM lawyer or project finance specialist continued but with Royal Commission’s raging it was the litigators who were enjoying their time in the sun.  The firms may not be allowed to hire just for the moment but when the lights go green again it’ll be lawyers with general litigation and/or insolvency experience they’ll come for first.

There’s no place like home; it seems likely that anyone who’s been planning to take their experience overseas might need to shelve their plans.  With international borders closed, a necessary focus on ensuring full employment for citizens and a rumbling uncertainty in some of the worlds larger economies it will be some time before Australian lawyers are in demand elsewhere.   It’s an interesting time to consider if your current job is a labour of love or if it was just a ticket to ride.

We could, like, Zoom?; Like most people, I’d never heard of Zoom six weeks ago but now it feels completely normal to hold team meetings online replete with my favourite Tiger King backdrop.  Pre-Covid19 it was commonplace for lawyers to have the facility to work from home but in future it’s now likely (and more likely to be encouraged) that we’ll all do it more often and not just because we have a plumber coming around.

Under review; nobody can predict quite yet what will happen to salary reviews this year (he says, knowing exactly what to expect) but I think it’s safe to assume they won’t be life changing. You’ll have to balance how you feel about the effort you’ve put in against the reward you got out.  For those firms keen to recruit, salary is likely to remain one of the key weapons in their arsenal.

So, with a bit a bit of luck it won’t be too long before we can go back to moaning about coffee, sharing juices at the gym, standing in a packed pub and feeling OK about the finger that just touched the ATM.  Until then, and despite what I said before, why don’t you use this time to reflect on your life goals and buff that CV anyway.

Matt Harris

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