Where can you see yourself next?

To Perm Or Not To Perm?

To Perm Or Not To Perm?

Legal contracting and temp opportunities explored

So this is a photo of my mum, Vivienne, my sisters and me, taken in the 80s.  Clearly perms were all the rage back then, as were perm jobs…

Fast forward to 2021, I look back at those times with fond memories (I miss having a fringe, oh and a full head of hair!). Many things are different nowadays, the way in which we style our hair of course, and notably the way in which we approach our careers and working life.

In the late 1970s, after having three kids, Mum made the tough decision to leave her promising and enjoyable career in taxation in search of a role that offered more flexibility. She quickly secured casual employment with retail giant, David Jones, a job she absolutely loved and worked for over 30+ years. Mum’s job at DJs provided her with great flexibility and the opportunity to work across different parts of the retail business. Mum has no regrets, she worked with great people and made lifelong friends, but I always wonder, as a recruiter, what could have been for her and others in a similar situation; that is, professionals with excellent technical skills and experience, had there been more career opportunities to use their professional skills in a more flexible or contract environment. Such opportunities would have allowed her and others to continue developing their skills in their dedicated specialities.

Having worked in the legal industry for over 20+ years now, I look around at ex-colleagues from law school and my private practice days, and I find many of them have similar experiences to my mum. I should note, there is absolutely nothing wrong with this approach, but we want to ensure people have options and choices. Fortunately, we now live in times, where there are more flexible careers options for people with strong technical skills and experience.

Working as a recruiter in the legal industry, I am regularly speaking with clients who are screaming out for talented lawyers, and are open to working with lawyers on a specific project, temporary or contract basis. Clients are looking for lawyers who can help them solve their legal issues. They want lawyers who are smart, commercial, experienced, relationship and stakeholder focused, and can deliver results. Ultimately, they want lawyers who can get the job done!  I have seen lawyers with 10+ years out of the legal market re-enter the legal workforce with great success. Likewise, I’ve helped many lawyers seek out more casual/flexible contract opportunities enabling them to maintain their legal skills whilst developing alternate businesses/ outside interests.

Often talented candidates lack the confidence to return to a legal or professional role following a career break, or feel that they can only succeed if they secure a role that is full-time or permanent. But I assure you, this is no longer the case! Having also worked ‘in-house’ for a number of years, I am very aware of the opportunities out there — whether you are a parent returning to work after a career break, someone who took a break through COVID or your role was impacted by the pandemic, or perhaps you are someone that is focusing on a second career — come and chat with us at Montgomery Edge. One of the many great things about my role is sourcing great legal talent and connecting them with our clients, for an interim or temporary period, which can often lead to something more permanent (if you want!), or further opportunities for that talent.

If you are reading this, and it resonates with you or someone you know, please get in contact with me or share this article with your friends. I would love to chat to you about fantastic opportunities in the contracting and temp legal market.  We are also holding a candidate information session specifically designed to inform, educate and help candidates considering contracting or temp legal opportunities.  Send us a message to let us know you want an invite, or contact me directly on 02 8381 0740.

Bill Panourgias

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