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November 25 2021

Flex Legal's Northern In-house Community


sophie gould

sophie gould

Flex Legal's Northern In-house Community

At the start of November, we were delighted to host our first ever Northern In-house Event, in collaboration with LexisNexis.

Aimed at all professional levels within in-house teams, from paralegals to GC’s, the event brought together an array of teams from across the thriving northern in-house legal community.

Thank you to everyone who attended - we’re really excited to welcome you all to our brand new northern in-house community. We hope you enjoyed the event as much as we did, and we'd like to offer an extra special thank you to all of our incredible speakers: Mary Bonsor, Louise Anderson, Gemma Farina, Susan Lamb, Dan Kayne and Katie Barker.

For those of you who couldn't make it, make sure to keep an eye out for our next Northern event! But until then, here are a few key takeaways from each talk:

The Flexible Approach to New Talent - Mary Bonsor, Flex Legal CEO & Louise Anderson, Head of the Flex Legal Northern Hub

  • The current route to qualification (LPC/Training Contract) is problematic. It is being phased out by the SRA and replaced with the Solicitors Qualification Exam (SQE).
  • The new route to qualification includes 2 years of qualifying work experience which can be completed in any organisation offering legal work, allowing in-house teams to build legal talent pipelines more affordably.
  • In-house legal teams can help aspiring solicitors by hiring Flex Legal paralegals on an 'on-demand' basis, or by hiring Flex Legal Trainees.

Mental Health and Wellbeing in Law - Gemma Farina, Assistant GC at Capital One & Susan Lamb, Managing Counsel at Shell (both LawCare Champions)

  • LawCare is a charity which promotes and supports good mental health and wellbeing in the legal profession - www.lawcare.org.uk.
  • LawCare's Life in the Law Study found that 69% of participants had experienced mental ill-health in the 12 months before completing the survey.
  • The survey also found that some key things participants felt would help improve workplace culture are: providing management training; regular catch-ups; and working towards creating a psychologically safe and supportive workplace.

Key Skills to Succeed - Dan Kayne, Founder of the O Shaped Lawyer & Katie Barker, Chair of the Junior Board

  • The O Shaped Lawyer aims to promote a cultural change in the legal industry, placing people and human behaviours at the heart of a more modern, progressive legal profession: http://www.oshapedlawyer.com/.
  • Their framework encompasses 5 areas:
    • Have an open mind
    • Be optimistic
    • Make and take opportunities
    • Be original
    • Take ownership
  • After 6 months, the O Shaped Lawyer pilot programme found that the individuals who took part were/had: increased trust; leaders setting the tone from the top with an empathetic and honest approach; more innovative ways of working; a focus on priorities/better time management; willingness to be vulnerable; an inclusive environment; more confident/comfortable; and overall, wellbeing always had a place at the top of the agenda.

If you'd like any more info on the above talks, please see links to all the presentations below:

The Flexible Approach to New Talent: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1y-JY2jT8arU8eTPjHgzVJkrJUuPDcK3LXNaAE58LI2M/edit?usp=sharing

Mental Health & Wellbeing in Law: https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/10GNThT9jy0UHzeFFWf4xojO-7JxtT5jx/edit?usp=sharing&ouid=110027796773500852864&rtpof=true&sd=true

Key Skills to Succeed: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1p8uc8l3sTuvipoSGiEteFLpkUjgUMBWM/view?usp=sharing

Thank you again for joining our Northern In-house community, and watch this space for more news on our next event!

Additional Resources:

  • Hire through Flex Legal - get in touch to find out more about our fantastic pool of northern paralegals and lawyers, and how they can support you and your legal team.
  • Apply to be a Flex Lawyer - interested in what the world of flexible, interim legal work could look like for you? Click here to learn more.
  • Humans of Law podcast - Humans of Law is our podcast which explores what it means to be human in the legal industry. Give it a listen on your morning commute!