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One in Three Lawyers Plans to Add Staff in Second Half of 2013; Litigation Driving Hiring



  One in Three Lawyers Plans to Add Staff in Second Half of 2013; Litigation
                                Driving Hiring

PR Newswire

MENLO PARK, Calif., June 19, 2013

MENLO PARK, Calif., June 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The legal field should see
more hiring activity in the months ahead, new research indicates. Nearly
one-third (31 percent) of lawyers interviewed by Robert Half Legal said their
law firm or company plans to expand or add new positions in the second half
(July through December) of 2013 while half (50 percent) said their
organizations will be maintaining current staff levels by filling vacated
posts. Thirteen percent of survey respondents said they will not be filling
vacant positions or creating new ones while two percent said they will be
reducing or eliminating positions.

A surge in litigation-related work is prompting the expansion of legal teams,
the research suggests. More than half  (55 percent) of lawyers expect
litigation activity to drive hiring at their law firms and companies followed
by business and commercial law matters, cited by 39 percent of those polled.
Although hiring is on the horizon for many, locating candidates with the
specialized skills and abilities employers require may prove difficult: 53
percent of survey respondents cited at least some challenge in finding skilled
legal professionals.

The survey was developed by Robert Half Legal, a legal staffing firm
specializing in placing lawyers, paralegals and other highly skilled legal
professionals. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based
on 200 telephone interviews with lawyers in the United States: 100 of the
respondents are employed at law firms with 20 or more employees and 100 are
employed at companies with 1,000 or more employees. All of the respondents
have hiring authority within their organizations.

Lawyers were asked, "Which of the following areas of law, in your opinion,
will drive hiring of legal professionals at your law firm/company in the
second half of 2013?" Their responses:*

Litigation                              55%
General business/commercial law         39%
Healthcare                              24%
Intellectual property                   14%
Privacy, data security, information law 11%
Bankruptcy/foreclosure                  8%
Labor and employment                    8%
Ethics and corporate governance         6%
Immigration                             4%
Energy/oil and gas                      3%
Real estate                             2%
Other                                   7%
None/don't know/no answer               11%
*Multiple responses were permitted.

 

Lawyers also were asked, "How challenging is it for your law firm/company to
find skilled legal professionals today?"  Their responses:

Very challenging                      16%
Somewhat challenging                  37%
Not challenging                       44%
Not applicable/not looking            3%
Don't know/no answer                  1%
                                      101%*
*Total percentage does not equal 100 due to rounding.

 

(NOTE: An infographic illustrating the hiring activity survey results is
available to download at
http://legal.rhi.mediaroom.com/file.php/1493/RHL_0613_GRAPH_Hire_US.jpg.)

"To increase their bench strength and augment practice groups, law firms are
seeking legal professionals who possess expertise in high-demand specialties
as well as solid business development skills," said Charles Volkert, executive
director of Robert Half Legal. "Legal departments also are expanding their
internal teams to address increased workloads."

Volkert added that companies are promoting their work environments, along with
career development and work-life balance programs, in an effort to attract the
best candidates.

About Robert Half Legal
Robert Half Legal is the legal staffing division of Robert Half International.
The company provides law firms and corporate legal departments with highly
skilled professionals, including lawyers, paralegals and legal support
personnel, on a project and full-time basis. With North American and global
locations, Robert Half Legal also offers managed review and e-discovery
services. More information, including online job search services, can be found
at www.roberthalflegal.com.

SOURCE Robert Half Legal

Website: http://www.roberthalflegal.com
Contact: Lisa Hamilton, (650) 234-6234, lisa.hamilton@rhi.com
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