How flexible thinking, about flexible working, can help..
Flexible working, flexi-time, home working, part time hours, condensed hours. Unfortunately, these words are not part of the standard vocab in the Legal sector yet but can really pay off when searching for a skill set which is in short supply in a given geography.
A client of mine was recently struggling to source a key role with a niche skill set, combine this with a desire to have the successful applicant coming from a legal sector background it was doubly tricky. They had searched for the core skill set, with sector experience as a full-time role to little, practically no success. So rather than banging our heads against that wall any further, we started trying to think about the lack of quality applicants from a different perspective - why is the firm not right for the applicant instead of why the applicant is not right for the firm. What is it that the quality candidates out there are looking for - could the firm offer something others don't? – could they offer flexibility and balance. As the opportunity opened to people who required a degree of flexible working in their life it became apparent that the “niche” skill set, with sector knowledge did exist. Because this firm were open minded enough and flexible enough to see beyond these requirements and recognise the value this person could add to their team they were able to source the best possible individual for their role within 4 weeks of initial conversation.
If you are looking for someone to join your team and cannot be flexible on the skill set you need then maybe start thinking about what you can show flexibility on. Some of the very best candidates out there need to balance their work life with their home life and if you can establish yourself as the firm that can allow for this you will find a whole new group of potential employees out there.