An Introduction to Hiring Virtually for Your Law Firm
The recent health crisis is forcing law firms to take a deeper dive into hiring virtually. The legal industry is now taking part in the trend of working with virtual administrative assistants, legal assistants, and paralegals to support day to day operations. Due to current stressful times, the added benefit allows them to remain fully operational and to focus on revenue-generating tasks.
In addition to transitioning their current staff to remote work, hiring additional virtual staff allows for firms to plan for a shortage of staff who may become ill or may have to assist their children with homeschooling duties. Virtual staff can jump in as needed and assist with administrative functions as caseloads increase.
By implementing a cloud-based approach and adding remote and virtual members to lawyers’ teams is smart for both the short and long-term. It is a cost-effective consistent strategy that allows for law firms to scale while alleviating and assisting overwhelmed staff.
There are remote and virtual best practices that law firms should practice. Start by implementing policies and processes. Create a manual. Here are a few tips that you should think about as you take the virtual leap:
- Prioritize work needed to be outsourced and create workflow processes for remote workers.
- Practicing time management. Create a virtual policy for remote workers or virtual team members that makes them responsible for time management.
- Dedicated work space. When hiring new virtual staff first ask about their work space and require them to have a dedicated work space void of additional noise.
- Implement different modes of communication so that the team members can collaborate with the firm including, phone, email, apps such as Zoom, Slack or G Suite.
- Work Management. Set clear expectations on how the work should be managed.
There is a wide pool of virtual and remote workers available for you however it is important to exercise due diligence. Research the best fit for your firm. Here are some best practices to consider when looking for virtual talent:
- Define what you are looking for in an awesome candidate
- Ask a colleague for a referral
- Implement on boarding and training
- Ask the candidate for references
- Hire virtual staff with experience
There is no debate that the virtual trend will continue long after the current crisis is over. This is especially true as technology will continue to evolve. Developing and implementing a clear strategy to on board virtual help will position your firm in the best possible position.